Intelligence testing

Alternative names
IQ testing


IQ tests are a series of assessments used to determine the general intelligence, or “intelligence quotient” (IQ), of an individual in relation to other people the same age.


There are many IQ tests used today, and the question of whether they measure actual intelligence or simply certain abilities continues to be controversial.

The Wechsler test is the most standardized and widely used exam. Average test results range from 90 - 110:

  • A score below 70 indicate mental retardation.  
  • A score of 130 or higher is usually considered gifted, although different programs set different levels for this classification.  
  • A score of 165 or higher is usually considered genius.

IQ tests measure a specific functioning ability and may not accurately asses a person’s talents or future potential. Results of any intelligence test may be culturally biased.

Johns Hopkins patient information

Last revised: December 4, 2012
by Harutyun Medina, M.D.

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