How Cultures Affect Perceptions of Intelligence - Essay Example

Perceptions of Intelligence In this essay, I will describe my personal deflation of Intelligence and explain how my cultural frames of reference influence my definition. I will compare my cultural frames of reference for intelligence with another culture’s frames of reference for intelligence. I will analyze the two online intelligence tests in terms of their appropriateness for use with people in all cultures. Last, I will explain why I believe family and environmental factors have a great influence on intelligence.

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Everyone as their own unique perception of what intelligence means. Our textbook described intelligence “as a set of mental abilities; the capacity to acquire and use knowledge; problem-solving skills and knowledge about the world; the ability to excel at a variety of tasks; or as a skill that allows us to understand, adapt, learn, and overcome obstacles” (Sheller & Levy, p. 1 1 6). There are so many factors that affect those definitions. All definitions relate to each person’s own culture and environment, whether It Is analytic thinking, creativity, nonverbal communication, emotions, movement, etc.

I define intelligence as the ability to use knowledge and problem- solving skills in order to reach certain goals and overcome certain obstacles to survive. One must recognize a problem; find a solution to the problem; use correct and available resources to solve the problem; and work through the process of the solution. By using these problem-solving skills, goals can be met and obstacles In my culture, survival is a huge part of intelligence. It is more than overcome. Being “book smart”. A person that has a high IQ and grades is definitely considered smart, but those are not the only elements of intelligence.

An intelligent person must also have knowledge of the land and utilize the resources available to them. I come from a rural town In Multiples. Gardening and farming are very common here, and they are a huge source of Income or means for survival. My family has lived off the land for many years, as well as most families in my community. We grow gardens, a part in my perception of intelligence. Other than geology and agriculture, common sense is part of my view of intelligence. Common sense allows us to function in the everyday world. If a stove eye is red, do not touch it.

If you hold a knife by the lade, it can cut you. You can get run over by a speeding car if you walk out in front of it. If you stand too close to the edge, you can slip and fall down. Common sense is our survival mechanism, and knowledge of survival is an important factor of intelligence. If you compare my culture’s perception of intelligence to another culture’s perception, you will see they are similar and different. My “rural” culture and “urban” cultures associate problem-solving with intelligence. In my culture, we feel someone that can solve their problem of hunger by growing their own vegetables is intelligent.

In “urban” cultures, they view a financial advisor’s ability to find the solution to people’s financial problems as intelligent. But, on the other hand, my culture has a broader view of intelligence. We feel that every class has intelligent people, whether it is high, middle, or low class. “Urban” cultures view the high class people as smart, and they feel the low class has lower IIS. They believe that people are considered more intelligent if they have a PhD or Master’s Degree. My culture believes that there are some people that have Master’s Degrees, and cannot function in the everyday world.

These people are not considered intelligent to us. The two intelligence tests were inappropriate for all cultures. It limits an accurate measure of intelligence, because only natives of that culture know the correct answers. With The Original Australian Test of Intelligence, it asks what number comes next after one, two, and, three. In my culture, common sense tells me it would be four. The correct answer to that question was actually many. It also asks a question about Sam, Ben, and Harry. It wanted to know which person was the nephew. I actually chose the correct answer, but for different reasons than it stated.

I chose Harry, because Ben and Sam were smoking. The test stated that Harry was the correct answer, because Harry is not to directly face and conversant with Ben. With The Chatting Intelligence Test, it asks what a “gas head” is. I chose a person who has a fast moving car, but the correct answer was a person who has a “process”. I am still confused after seeing the correct answer, because I do not know what a “process” is. On the other hand, I got a few correct. I knew that Bob Diddled was a down-home singer and Jet was a news and gossip magazine. I guessed several of the questions correctly, but I could have possibly guessed wrong.

I do not see how people from different cultures are to get these answers correct. There are too many differences in every culture, including terms, definitions, and phrases. I believe that family and environmental factors have the greatest influence on intelligence. People from stable environments know what to expect; therefore, they can plan their lives accordingly. If a person is from an unstable environment, they might lack planning strategies. The availability of educational tools also factor greater intelligence, such as, teachers, books, and technology. A well educated family will press the child to set higher educational tankards.

They will start stimulating and teaching their children at a young age. If children have parents that are involved in their education, chances are they will perform well in school. A person that has a family to help support their dreams of higher education will most likely pursue those dreams and receive a degree. In you use your problem-solving skills in everyday life to succeed and survive. Everyone has different perceptions of intelligence, based on our own cultural frames of reference. Since we all are from different cultures, we have different “general knowledge”; therefore, the two online intelligence tests are bias.