What Is Intelligence?

Reading a road map upside-down and generating synonyms for the word "brilliant" are two very different skills. But each is a measurable indicator of general intelligence, a construct that includes problem solving abilities, spatial manipulation and language acquisition. Scientists generally agree that intelligence can be captured by psychometric tests. But the study of intelligence is dogged by questions of just how much IQ contributes to an individual's success and well-being, how genes and environment interact to generate smarts and why the average IQ score rose throughout the world during the twentieth century.

Recent Posts on Intelligence

Does Training Make Your Dog Smarter?

Dogs that have been trained to high levels of performance in any of a number of skills (e.g., agility, schutzhund, search and rescue, retrieving, musical freestyle, etc.) become better problem solvers on totally unrelated tasks.

This Is How You Should Learn

By Jen Kim on April 28, 2015 in Valley Girl With a Brain
According to research from the National Academy of Sciences, the most effective (and exemplary) teaching methods are those that truly engage its students.

Walking to Boost Creativity

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on April 23, 2015 in The Human Beast
We are all familiar with the health problems caused by obesity. These problems are peculiar to a modern sedentary way of life and are virtually unknown in physically active subsistence societies. Now evidence builds that physical activity is crucial for brain health, and even for creativity.

Prime Your Child’s Reading & Math Development with Patterns

Patterning refers to the meaningful process of organizing, coding, and categorizing information in the brain. It is through the patterns constructed and stored in neural networks that our brains recognize and find relevance in the millions of bits of sensory input received every second. Your child’s early experiences sorting, categorizing and patterning are key.

Ten Steps Toward Parenting for Happy Productivity

Accomplishment, achievement, and recognition are good goals for our children, but being loving and happily productive on one’s own terms are better. For my children and grandchildren, what delights me more than any prizes the world might offer is a confident integrity; a radiant inner light; a life lived with love, kindness, courage, happy productivity, and appreciation.

As A Nation, How Can We Best Empower Our Gifted Kids?

Should your child move ahead to that advanced math class? Should they skip a grade? Should they enter college early? What impact will that have on their educational and social/emotional trajectory? What does the research evidence tell us?

Lovely Me

Amy loses weight by squarely facing her emotional eating patterns and envisions living the life in the body of her choice.

10 Tips to Change From Reactive to Proactive in Situations

All of us encounter experiences in life when we may be temporally overwhelmed by a negative emotion, be it anger, pressure, nervousness, despair, or confusion. In these situations, how we choose to “master the moment” can make the difference between proactive versus reactive, and confidence versus insecurity. Here are ten ways to be less reactive in difficult situations...

Is Birth Order a Myth?

Most people believe that birth order shapes our personalities and has impact on the careers we choose, and the ways we behave. Is this real, or merely an illusion? What do we really know about birth order effects?

The Hand that Rocks the Cradle Rules—But Whose Hand Is It?

The history of the nature/nurture controversy reveals fraud on the nurture side and developments in our view of nature that the imprinted brain theory readily explains.

Putting the Happiness Back in “Young and Happy”

By Ran Zilca on April 17, 2015 in Confessions of a Techie
Happiness is a by-product of the pursuit of success, rather than successful accomplishments. Individuals who are actively engaged in the pursuit of goals that are meaningful to them, experience a range of positive emotions and become happier.

God, Humans, and the 20th Century

By Phil Zuckerman Ph.D. on April 16, 2015 in The Secular Life
More humans died from diarrhea than all genocides combined.

What Makes Us Tick?

They met in a airport because of a book that one of them was reading, the same the other had recently read. The conversation was so stimulating that they decided to continue it online and share it with their readers. They both believe this will be the first of an endless series of talks about the subject—what makes people tick—that tickles them the most.

When Your Four Year Old Hits Your Two Year Old: a Script

Rewards and punishment don't usually stop the hitting, because they don't help kids with the underlying feelings, or teach them a better way to solve the problem that caused the hitting. When things do go wrong, we want them to find a way to repair the damage they've done to their relationship.

The New Sexual Revolution Is the Sexual Healing Movement

The entire sexual recovery movement and growing number of therapists and centers devoted to sexual healing is at the forefront of a new wave of sexual liberation.

Add Humor to Your Job and Boost Your Career

Take the brave step of experimenting with more well-placed humor at your job. By going outside your normal comfort zone with some easy-to-follow tips, you may develop a much more appealing work environment for yourself, and advance your career.

Curiosity: The Heart of Lifelong Learning

What makes children want to learn? Curious children often spend a great deal of time reading and acquiring knowledge because they sense a gap between what they know and what they want to know—not because they are motivated by grades.

Newsflashes from Emotion Science

A few reflections on the themes that emerged from the second annual meeting of the Society for Affective Science, a new society dedicated to understanding our emotional lives.

'The Eureka Factor' and Your Creative Brain

By Jeffrey Davis M.A. on April 13, 2015 in Tracking Wonder
A creative insight can be as small as landing on an angle for a blog post or as big as discovering a fresh angle for a new book or business launch. The moment you gain such an insight flashes like lightning – and vanishes like lightning. Can you become aware of such moments? And can you replicate them?

8 Ways a Teacher Is Like a Leader

When most people think of a leader, archetypes often include the president of a country, the boss of a company, or a general in the military. But can a teacher be equated to a leader?

How To Change Your Life

By Sheila Kohler on April 12, 2015 in Dreaming for Freud
Change, which is so difficult to achieve in life and to portray in literature is often brought about by a catalyst, a stranger, who comes into our lives and makes us see ourselves in a different and perhaps more truthful light.

Show Me The Money!

By Renee Garfinkel Ph.D. on April 12, 2015 in Time Out
I love money. I love everything about it. I bought some pretty good stuff. Got me a $300 pair of socks. Got a fur sink. An electric dog polisher. A gasoline powered turtleneck sweater. And, of course, I bought some dumb stuff, too. –Steve Martin

The Psychology of Imprinting

By Adrian Furnham Ph.D. on April 12, 2015 in A Sideways View
There are fascinating stories of how animals get attached to those of a quite different species because of critical period imprinting. Can this process begin to help us understand why we are attracted to very different kinds of people?

Faulty Reporting on ADHD

By Christopher Lane Ph.D. on April 11, 2015 in Side Effects
Newspaper of record criticized for its tardy response to overmedicalization.

Meet Danielle Meitiv: Fighting for Her Kids’ Rights

By Peter Gray on April 11, 2015 in Freedom to Learn
Danielle and Alexander Meitiv have been giving their children some of the same freedom that they themselves enjoyed as children, in a world that is safer than the one in which they grew up. As a consequence, they have been visited by police, and the county Child Protective Services have threatened to take their children away. Here is my interview with Danielle.

A Meditation on How Moral Injuries Heal

By Nancy Sherman Ph.D. on April 09, 2015 in Afterwar
Many soldiers don't easily volunteer the word "guilt." They'll instead choose "fault" and "responsibility."

Making the Most of Your Charitable Giving

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on April 08, 2015 in How To Do Life
Most people work hard for the money they give to charity, but that money often doesn't do as much good as it could.

John Joseph Shows Us Why Healthy Living Is Pure Hardcore

By Michael Friedman Ph.D. on April 08, 2015 in Brick by Brick
The Cro-Mags' John Joseph shows us that coping with difficult situations can be hard, but healthy living is the ultimate strategy.

The Zen of Love

What propels a person to leave the beaten path and try something new? We seem to be predetermined by our early experiences, especially when it comes to abuse and neglect. Yet, some people free themselves of their conditioning and leap into something they have never encountered: love. Little do we comprehend when it comes to leaps, but what we know may just be a good start.