Can you score higher than your IQ? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 06:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have always been under the impression that it's impossible for someone to score significantly higher than their actual IQ.   I know that it's possible, for a wide variety of reasons, to score significantly lower.  Can anyone point me to any documented info. on whether it's possible to score higher?

 

TIA!

 


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#2 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 06:37 AM
 
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I know when given scores, we were given a score- but then a range to go with it. If you were to take an IQ test one day and then again the next theoretically, you scores could vary. Anyone that has taken multiple IQ tests often get scores that vary a bit (as some students do that have an IEP and need reeval for GIEP or Spec.Education services) even when given the exact same test. The variance in scores may differ even more if different IQ tests are given (see reasoning in links below):

 

Our schools tried to re-give IQ testing at a later age, or avoid IQ testing in kids under age 7 since it can vary so widely due to outside circumstances (fatigue of child, length of sessions needed, etc). I have seen wild swings (up and down) in kids that were tested young and then restested at a later date, especially if given WPPSI when young an then WISC as an older child.

 

So usually they give you scoring in a range fashion with a percentage of confidence that scores fall in that range.

 

I dont have any documented info, but observations both personal and from working with scores and data from academic and achievement testing. Maybe someone who has administered IQ testing could have more concrete info for you.

 

Below is a link that talked a bit about the variance in scores that can occur:

 

http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/iq_varies.htm

 

Here is a breakdown of scores from different testing and what they imply per giftedness (different tests have different cut-off range for giftedness):

 

http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/highly_profoundly.htm

 

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#3 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 07:19 AM
 
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I've also always heard that you can't. However, I've been reading about IQ tests lately and it seems to me that certain GT kids who are very quick on the draw and have good memories (this is my DD, although we don't have a processing score for her because the test she took doesn't provide one) might score more highly than those who are in a sense more "deeply" gifted and who think about things more slowly and thoroughly. But I guess this is why people use the GAI, or whatever that other measure is?

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#4 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 08:16 AM
 
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Hmm. Interesting question. I don't know about any research off-hand. There are different kinds of tests and assessments out there. I can think of a possible scenario where an early achieving child with an exceptional memory might score very high on an achievement test, but not do so well on an ability-based test that probes deeper and with more sensitivity into a range of cognitive skills. 

 

Is there a particular scenario that inspired the question? 

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#5 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 10:53 AM
 
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I have been told the same thing about not being able to score lower than your IQ because the questions are open ended and therefore it's not likely that you are going to get a lot of lucky guesses.

 

However, I spoke on the just last week with a psychologist in my area who is very familiar with testing gifted kids.  One of his comments was that it was generally easier for a younger kid to get a higher score on an IQ test than an older kid and that very often kids who were tested very young score lower when retested when they were older.  I have nothing to back this up, it's just was I was told.  So, in that sense, yes, you can score a higher score when you are younger than what your true IQ score might be once you are an adult. 

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#6 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 11:00 AM
 
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My daughter is soon to get tested to, so I'd appreciate any research and info that can befound.

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#7 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 11:53 AM
 
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OK, I have to chime in here and ask a question along the same lines.

Let's say a child, at the age of 7, scored verbal 158 and performance 140. Can this child then score "90", as I was told, on the same IQ test performed 4 or 5 years later.

What's the degree of accuracy? Does degree of accuracy vary by method of testing? Seriously, a childs IQ score doesn't change that drastically over a few years, right?

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#8 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 12:08 PM
 
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A child could certainly score that way--but, to me in my former role as an educational evaluator, it would call one of the two administrations into question. Unfortunately, there is no telling which one was inaccurate. That's where, in my experience, we would go to other tests for confirmation, and do a thorough review of the child's records and history to determine which of the two scores seems more accurate.

 

and, that is where we would do other assessments to rule out any sort of complicating medical issue that might be causing scores to be suppressed.

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#9 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 12:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casha'sMommy View Post

OK, I have to chime in here and ask a question along the same lines.

Let's say a child, at the age of 7, scored verbal 158 and performance 140. Can this child then score "90", as I was told, on the same IQ test performed 4 or 5 years later.

What's the degree of accuracy? Does degree of accuracy vary by method of testing? Seriously, a childs IQ score doesn't change that drastically over a few years, right?



It could. I had a student that had poorly controlled epilepsy and his IQ scores swung (dropped) 40 pts over the course of 1st to 5th grade. We felt it was accurate due to biological damage the seizures had done. Another student that experiences a TBI from a car accident also had a significant drop.

 

I also have seen a large jump before from a child tested two different times years apart ( one testing period,it was noted the child could not attend to the task and that the data was not likely the highest indication of ability).

 

Usually they will state 90% accuracy between X and X scores with the final score given in the middle. So technically, the same child would get between X and X scores if given the same test 9 our of 10 times. 

 

With such a large score variance, I would look into the administrator, the testing environment, and other factors. Some kids given 'group' tests score very differently in a one on one setting due to attentional, hearing, focus, etc factors.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spedteacher30 View Post

A child could certainly score that way--but, to me in my former role as an educational evaluator, it would call one of the two administrations into question. Unfortunately, there is no telling which one was inaccurate. That's where, in my experience, we would go to other tests for confirmation, and do a thorough review of the child's records and history to determine which of the two scores seems more accurate.

 

and, that is where we would do other assessments to rule out any sort of complicating medical issue that might be causing scores to be suppressed.



I agree w/ the above. I would look into the medical and academic history of the child. Also standardized testing results from basic academic testing (not IQ- rather IOWA Basic Skills, MEAP, etc. that are done at certain times/grades for all children in that area done for AYP on NCLB testing) should help you know the childs abilities barring any severe learning disabilities (which most likely would result in lower than expected scores on basic academic testing).

If appropriate time has passed, request another evaluation.

 

As a PP, stated. There was a lot of chats of IQ scores being inflated for highly educated, preschoolers (WPSSI)---when tested later some will get lower scores (WISC), but I can not recall a specific paper that proves so. The Psychologists I worked with did say they saw it often- a small drop when given different tests at a later age. Some is due to differences in testing abilities (ceilings on subtests, cap on IQ upper limit testing, etc) Some testing also 'scores' differently (see links above) so two different tests can result in very different scores.

 

For example: the WPPSI has a higher 'score' requirement than the WISC for the Davison Young Scholars- BUT the percentile is the same (99.9%+). So they believe that scores of 150+ are equal to the those of 145+ on WISC.

 

http://www.davidsongifted.org/youngscholars/Article/Davidson_Young_Scholars___Qualification_Criteria_384.aspx

 

Just an idea of comparison.

 

 

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#10 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 03:02 PM
 
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Many IQ tests are designed to see if a person is able to figure out something novel that they are unfamiliar with out.  If the person being tested is actually familiar with the testing materials before hand, then their IQ will be inflated.


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#11 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 06:49 PM
 
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I think there are a number of variables at play.

 

1.  Ensuring that you're comparing scores appropriately - different tests score out differently (http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/highly_profoundly.htm ).    IE 138 on WISC IV is approximately equiv to 129 on SB-5.  So are apples being compared to apples?

2.  I agree with Eepster re novelty/familiarity, and with others that different thinking styles are going to affect "performance."

3.  How would one determine that the highest score isn't accurate?  Common practice is to assume that the lower score(s) are underperformance.  I guess if you did multiple testing and the high score was a dramatic outlier, but when's that going to be practical?

4.  Age does change scoring.  There's some evidence that scores can swing up or down as much as 30 points over the course of childhood.

 

I recommend the gifted chapter in NurtureShock.  They talk about this issue with a lot of citations included to actual studies.


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#12 of 21 Old 01-26-2011, 08:20 PM
 
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I certainly didn't mean to hi-jack.

Anyone have further info re: the op's question?

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#13 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 02:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casha'sMommy View Post

I certainly didn't mean to hi-jack.

Anyone have further info re: the op's question?


No, you didn't hijack!  The scenario you described is similar to the one I formed my question around - except there were different instruments used for  the tests.  It's the wild discrepancy in the scores that I was wondering about, and what that could possibly mean -- so all of this discussion has been good.

 

From the Hoagies site:

http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/iq_varies.htm

"I've read and been told that intelligence tests cannot accidentally miss-score higher. Intelligence tests are not multiple choice; there's no way a child could "guess" themselves into gifted or highly gifted. Yes, perhaps, they could accidentally answer a question or two such that the score was inflated, but each test is long enough, and has been normed on enough children, that this is taken into account in the score."

 


Laura - Mom to ds (10) and dd (7) "Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life." Brian Andreas.

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#14 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 05:18 AM
 
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In my situation, ds was tested twice per my request in an attempt to rule out learning disabilities as he was having significant difficulties in school (kindy and first).

The difficulties in school include some of the below:

  • didn't read until 2nd grade but quite a large vocabulary (although, I believe he was able to read far before that but didn't care to read the kindy and gr 1 books because the first book he ever read completely on his own was a chapter book.)
  • excellent math skills but could not complete math work in class and later had trouble keeping numbers in columns. (However, he was able to add and subtract multi-digit numbers in his head before the age of six. He helped me add the grocery bill while shopping.lol.gif)
  • quirky and sometimes odd behaviors

So, I got tired of the "your son was naughty in school today" notes and requested testing for ds. I also had him tested privately to get a good comparison of the results. The IQ portion of testing was very similar in score however, I do not have the schools results any longer. (they got lost in a move) The results I posted above, 158 and 140, are the results from the private testing. Then, a few years later, the ex decides there's something wrong with ds eyesroll.gif and had ds assessed as well. I was told the score was "90" but have never received a copy of results. So, which is it? Are the original results from two sources accurate or is the 90 accurate? Or something in between?

Because of his behaviors and talents I find it very difficult to believe the score of 90 was using the same assessment tool and, if it was, then I can't believe it's accurate. y/k?

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#15 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 06:00 AM
 
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This article from the U. of Iowa might be of interest: Gifted today but not tomorrow.

 

I do think, like others have said, that achievement can be above ability due to strong work ethic, study habits, pressure, or well educated environment.  I also have seen cases where early IQ tests (like preschool) are inflated due to an enriched environment.  In both of these cases, I'd expect that time would bear out whether the higher #s were accurate and I'd expect to see higher than accurate numbers more in younger kids than teens, for instance.

 

One of my dds has seen some wild fluctuations in both IQ and achievement scores.  In her instance, even the lower IQ scores are still gifted and there is huge variance in the subtests even when she is looking more MG with parts still at the 99.9th while other parts are average.  It is hard to know what to make of kids whose scores move around like that.  It could be settling into the more accurate number if the child is consistently inching down toward his potential but, in instances like ours where the #s continue to move up and down wildly on all measures there is probably something more at play: a LD, ADD, anxiety...

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#16 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 06:23 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casha'sMommy View Post

 

So, I got tired of the "your son was naughty in school today" notes and requested testing for ds. I also had him tested privately to get a good comparison of the results. The IQ portion of testing was very similar in score however, I do not have the schools results any longer. (they got lost in a move) The results I posted above, 158 and 140, are the results from the private testing. Then, a few years later, the ex decides there's something wrong with ds eyesroll.gif and had ds assessed as well. I was told the score was "90" but have never received a copy of results. So, which is it? Are the original results from two sources accurate or is the 90 accurate? Or something in between?

Because of his behaviors and talents I find it very difficult to believe the score of 90 was using the same assessment tool and, if it was, then I can't believe it's accurate. y/k?

 

If I didn't have any further information about what assessment instrument was used, what the testing conditions were like, the qualifications of the person administering it, the underlying pattern of scores in the subtests, how your ds was feeling and behaving that day (given you mention behaviour as an issue) etc. etc. etc......I wouldn't rely on a bald "90" number. Especially not when 2 independent assessments produced similar results that are significantly different than that 90. 

 


 

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#17 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 07:56 AM
 
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Christa, that was a fascinating article that challenges quite a lot of the current dogma re: giftedness. I would encourage others to read it! It's given me a lot to think about.

grateful mother to DD, 1/04, and DS, 2/08

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#18 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 09:26 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Casha'sMommy View Post

In my situation, ds was tested twice per my request in an attempt to rule out learning disabilities as he was having significant difficulties in school (kindy and first).

The difficulties in school include some of the below:

  • didn't read until 2nd grade but quite a large vocabulary (although, I believe he was able to read far before that but didn't care to read the kindy and gr 1 books because the first book he ever read completely on his own was a chapter book.)
  • excellent math skills but could not complete math work in class and later had trouble keeping numbers in columns. (However, he was able to add and subtract multi-digit numbers in his head before the age of six. He helped me add the grocery bill while shopping.lol.gif)
  • quirky and sometimes odd behaviors

So, I got tired of the "your son was naughty in school today" notes and requested testing for ds. I also had him tested privately to get a good comparison of the results. The IQ portion of testing was very similar in score however, I do not have the schools results any longer. (they got lost in a move) The results I posted above, 158 and 140, are the results from the private testing. Then, a few years later, the ex decides there's something wrong with ds eyesroll.gif and had ds assessed as well. I was told the score was "90" but have never received a copy of results. So, which is it? Are the original results from two sources accurate or is the 90 accurate? Or something in between?

Because of his behaviors and talents I find it very difficult to believe the score of 90 was using the same assessment tool and, if it was, then I can't believe it's accurate. y/k?



Were these all the same intruments?  What time difference existed between the private and school testing?  It's not considered valid to use the same instrument more than once within the same year, so if you did the WISC-IV (say) twice within a few weeks or months, I think the first test would be deemed more "valid."  A link I posted above also demonstrates the differences between what a number/score can mean depending on the instrument used.  In fact, it's pretty uninformative to use a number (130) without identifying which test and which ideation of the test used, as that number can mean pretty different things depending on the instrument used (MG to EG).

 

As for 158 and 140 in the same testing, they are both within the gifted range on any test listed in that hoagies link (don't know if it was some other, uncommon instrument).  It's really common for gifted scores to be uneven, that there's real strength in one area (ie verbal vs non-verbal).  So, assuming that the scores are valid (see above), your DS is really, really gifted in one area (verbal or non-verbal) and also gifted in the other, just not to the same degree.

 

I think LauraLoo is talking about big discrepancies in scoring between testings, not within a single test (which is pretty common). 

 

Laura, the SB5 was used in kindie with DS, and he had near ceilings in the non-verbal portions and high scores overall.  In gr2, we used the WISC-IV and he ceilinged the verbal and had high but not as high as kindie non-verbal scores.  It was explained as differences in how stuff is tested between the two instruments, and also how things are tested in the younger years.  We think that the believed-to-be-depressed non-verbal scores in gr2 are caused by his vision issues and 2E variables. 

 

Now, off to read Christa's link :).

 

ETA;  You might find this interesting, it discusses g and testing.

http://www.gifteddevelopment.com/About_GDC/whoaregiftd.htm


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#19 of 21 Old 02-01-2011, 08:57 PM
 
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Casha's mommy, is it possible that someone misunderstood, and the second score is 90th percentile? Which would still be lower, but not by such an absurd margin, especially if the testing conditions were really bad?

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#20 of 21 Old 02-02-2011, 09:49 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by domesticidyll View Post

Casha's mommy, is it possible that someone misunderstood, and the second score is 90th percentile? Which would still be lower, but not by such an absurd margin, especially if the testing conditions were really bad?



I had never thought of that! Very good point.

I don't want to be too hard on myself but I have to say that I really don't think ds scored higher at a younger age due to enriched environment.winky.gif

I believe the testing environment and the feelings ds had regarding the therapist may have contributed to a lower score but I couldn't wrap my head around such a discrepancy. 

Thanks so much for your input. 

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#21 of 21 Old 02-03-2011, 11:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by domesticidyll View Post

Casha's mommy, is it possible that someone misunderstood, and the second score is 90th percentile? Which would still be lower, but not by such an absurd margin, especially if the testing conditions were really bad?


This is what I was thinking.  If you had 2 IQ's when he was younger and they scored pretty equally AND he was demonstrating skills like you said, then I would go with those scores and forget about the "90" without more information backing it.  Could be that this was a percentile ranking.  Could be that it was not an IQ test, but an achievement test of some sort and ds was having a mediocre day. ;-) 
 

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