IQ Testing as the Emperor’s New Clothes

A Critique of Jensen’s Bias in Mental Testing
  • Asa G. HilliardIII
Part of the Perspectives on Individual Differences book series (PIDF)


I, for one, was very happy to see the publication by Arthur Jensen, Bias in Mental Testing (1980), not for the reason, as some have suggested, that it provides a “final definitive answer” to the critics of standardized IQ tests. I am happy because Bias in Mental Testing, as Jensen’s attempt to be comprehensive, actually covers so much territory that the soft underbelly of key arguments in support of IQ testing in general and IQ testing for “minority populations” in particular is easily exposed. Presumably, this book is Arthur Jensen’s tour de force. He has done a distinct service to education measurement by his articulation of common practice in test construction, experimental design, and statistical methodology. I can think of few references that treat these topics quite so clearly and comprehensively. On the other hand, Arthur Jensen has listed most of the major criticisms in the IQ-testing controversy but has failed to deal with the data that are presented in support of the criticisms by others. Jensen has claimed that he has made an exhaustive review of all the literature that pertains to the IQ argument. In this critique, we will look precisely at that claim.


Cultural Group Item Difficulty Interval Scale Bilingual Child Cultural Bias 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Asa G. HilliardIII
    • 1
  1. 1.Georgia State UniversityAtlantaUSA

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