Culture invariant intelligence testing

Nowdays it is politically incorrect to speak of a person's intelligence as measured by his/her I.Q. It is impolite too. Some people doubt any measure of intelligence can be culture independent. To learn more about this subject I purchased the scholarly but controversial book, "The g-factor" by Harvard professor Arthur Jensen.

Here is my adaptation of Jensen's example of a question of moderate difficulty on such an IQ test. The classic tests of this kind are called "Raven's Matrices". Google might find you the entire test. Look around and you'll find average scores by countries of the world.

Does this look like an intelligence-measuring question to you? What's your answer? the same as mine? We'll all agree the exam can be turned upside-down or sideways without changing the meaning of anything.

If you like politically incorrect materials, look at Amazon book reviews for "IQ and the Wealth of Nations" by Richard Lynn and Tatu Vanhanen.

What's my message to you? I'm a geophysicist. That's like a geographer -- look at different parts of the world and describe the differences. If everywhere everything was the same, there wouldn't be much work for a geographer to do, would there? Amazingly, some geophysicists act as though seismic velocity were complicated (anisotropic) but the same everywhere. That's like believing that people are complicated but the same everywere. I don't believe that. I think velocity (and people!) vary from place to place. Mapping it and explaining it -- that's my job. I'm not very good at the people part. Others are not very honest about the people part -- just like seismic velocity! That's my message to you.