Cognitive Advancements and the Growth of Intelligence in History the Cognitive-Developmental and the Psychometric Approaches in Comparison
Authors: Georg W. Oesterdiekhoff
Number of views: 73
Populations of different societies differ enormously in their average intelligence scores. Scores of humans from developing countries are lower than those of humans living in advanced countries. Scores of populations of industrialized countries have been continuously growing for more than 100 years. These two groups of phenomena are interconnected to each other. The analysis presented here inserts the psychometric research results, circling around the Flynn effect, into the context of Piagetian cross-cultural psychology. The results of more than 1.000 empirical enquiries, basing on this comparably smaller twin industry, carried out in the past 80 years, have shown that populations of pre-modern societies are staying on preoperational and concrete-operational stages and do not reach the stage of formal operations usually. Only adolescents of modern societies gain the cultural opportunity to develop this stage of abstract thinking. The both leading theories of intelligence, rightly commented, come to the same conclusion referring to the relationship of culture and cognition. Both approaches can support each other. Moreover, the essay combines these insights with notions stemming from ethnology, history, and sociology. The resulting conclusions are helpful to a better understanding not only of mental structures but also of the development of culture and social structures.