# Henri poincare got a 35 on an iq test?

1. Jan 30, 2012

### Mathguy15

I read here http://www.eoht.info/page/Genius that henri poincare got a 35 on an iq test. I think that is really interesting, if its true! i've heard that people with mental deficiency score in the 60's, so 35 would be really low! I used to think iq meant something years ago, but I dropped that in 9th grade, when I realized I could do math without a "high" IQ, but now I'm of the opinion that IQ is very useless except under very limited contexts! thoughts?

Thanks,
Mathguy15

Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2012
2. Jan 30, 2012

### AlephZero

Re: 35?!

More likely, a classic example of a "fact" misinterpreted out of context.

Binet was one of the early pioneers of intelligence testing, and scored his tests to indicate the "mental age" of the subject. The web page doesn't say at what physical age Poincare was tested, but "a mental age of 35" isn't "an imbecile", on any reasonable interpretation.

3. Jan 30, 2012

### micromass

Re: 35?!

I can't really find a reputable source for this claim.

4. Jan 30, 2012

### micromass

Re: 35?!

Imbecile is (or was) the official name of an IQ between 26 and 50. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imbecile

5. Jan 30, 2012

### AlephZero

Re: 35?!

Binet didn't use the "modern" standard IQ scale with mean = 100 and SD = 15, because that was not invented until after Binet and Poincare were both dead.

He was mainly interested in the development of young children and was trying to measure their "mental age" compared with their physical age. That type of scale doesn't make much sense for adults, or even for adolescents, but Binet wasn't trying to measure adult intelligence.

6. Jan 30, 2012

### arildno

Re: 35?!

According to Wiki, Binet made major revisions of his intelligence test just prior to his death in 1911.
If Poincare was tested in, say, the period 1908-1911, he would have been in his mid-fifties.
If there is anything valuable about Binet's original testing method, a mental age of 35 ought to be a PEAK value in his system.
A middle-aged man retaining his youthful mental agility is quite impressive..

7. Jan 30, 2012

### Mathguy15

Re: 35?!

okay, that's why it was "35".