A General Intelligence
Today we will look at this problematic concept known as "intelligence". What is it? Is there an "intelligence" that help us to solve all kinds of problems? Or are there
different intelligences that help us deal with particular problems and
solutions? What do you think?
I think it depends on other things, such as cultural background.
Indeed. There is also a body of research that states mental ability is a function of
social factors such as education and not one's inherent biological make-up. The
scientific community is devided on the issue. One of the beliefs behind the idea of
single entity "inteligence" is the concept of "General Intelligence" or "g". The
English psychologist Charles Spearman in the early 20th century made "g" stand for
a statistical measures of performance across a variety of tests. He found that the
same people who did well in variety of mental tests tended to use a part in their
brains that he termed "g".This "g" laid the foundation for the notion of a single
intelligence, allowing us to undertake everyday mental tasks. Can you think of any
problems inherent in this theory?
Well, for one thing, it seems there are a lot of t mental activities that go on and that we
can't always measure their activity so easily.
Ture enough. Nonetheless, a recent study seems to confirm Spearman's theory.
Reseach has found that a part of the brain called the "lateral prefrontal cortex" is the
only area of the brain to increase in blood flow when volunteers tackle complicated
puzzles. However, Spearman's concept is still highly controversial with many people
questioning both the the statistical process and the simplistic nature of "g"
1. What is the main topic of the lecture>
A The importance of intelligence in education.
B Sperman’s theory of General Intelligence.
C The function of the lateral prefrontal cortex in human psychology.
D The problems in the scientific community.
2. What is the main idea of Spearman’s “g” theory?
A There is a single intelligence that helps us to solve all kinds of problems.
B There is a part of the brain called “lateral prefrontal cortex” which controls blood
C The social background is the main factor in determining intelligence.
D We cannot measure our mental activities with the “single intelligence” theory.