Teachers say the darndest things (about intelligence)

It’s time for a thought experiment! Imagine what would happen if most people working in engineering did not have a correct understanding of the basic principles of physics. Alternatively, ponder what would happen if a majority of physicians had incorrect ideas about biology and the causes of disease. Of course, the result would be disastrous.

Intelligence research: An example of Thomas Kuhn’s “normal science”

Psychology is a mess. And I don’t say that because of the consequences of the replication crisis. No, compared to biology and the physical sciences, psychology is a mess because it has no unifying theory. Biology has evolutionary theory as a powerful framework for understanding everything from ecology to genetics. Chemistry has atomic theory, which

Standardized tests: NOT designed for standardized minds

In response to my list of 35 myths about human intelligence that my upcoming book tackles, I have had people ask me what intelligence myths didn’t make the cut. It is a fun thought experiment to think how the book would be different with a different mix of incorrect ideas to address and correct. There

Lewontin’s bait-and-switch: A strategy to undermine genetic explanations of behavior

Coinciding with the launch of his book, Human Diversity: The Biology of Gender, Race, and Class (see my thoughts here), Charles Murray had an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal where, among other things, he discussed the importance of polygenic scores in making predictions. Polygenic scores are scores derived from DNA variants. Bits of

Start teaching about intelligence!

Last week, I had a new article published by the American Psychological Association in Teaching of Psychology (Burton & Warne, in press). The article has two parts: an analysis of course catalogs, and an outline for a university-level intelligence course. Course Catalog Analysis My then-student, Jared Z. Burton, identified 303 of the top universities in

35 mitos sobre la inteligencia humana

English version of this post – Versión en inglés de esta entrada En el 30 de noviembre de 2019, mandé el texto final de mi próximo libro In the Know: Debunking 35 Myths About Human Intelligence (con el título en español de Estar al tanto: Desmintiendo 35 mitos sobre la inteligencia humana) a la editorial.

Does the Ivy League’s prestige encourage bad ideas to flourish?

The announcement of the content of my upcoming book, In the Know: Debunking 35 Myths About Human Intelligence has been very well received. I’ve aimed the book towards the interested layman, and I have had several emails and social media messages from non-psychologists stating that they were looking forward to the book. There are two

The one variable that makes growth mindset interventions work

Do you believe that how hard you work to learn something is more important than how smart you are? Do you think that intelligence is not set in stone, but that you can make yourself much smarter? If so, congratulations! You have a growth mindset. Proposed by Stanford psychologist Carol S. Dweck, mindset theory states