Several months ago, I took the Tickle IQ Test, advertised as “the most thorough and scientifically accurate IQ Test on the Web.” I’d never taken an IQ test before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect.
When I finished, I thought there was a good chance I’d answered every question right. I was only iffy on a couple of questions. I submitted my answers, and it said my IQ was… 144. High, but not quite the mindblowing score I’d expected from not missing a single question. So where did I go wrong? The website kindly informed me that for $14.95, I could get a complete report with all the correct answers. That’s when I passed the real intelligence test – by passing on the offer.
Yesterday, I got an email from Tickle saying I could get the report for free (after declining a bunch of lame offers). I skipped past all the babble about my intellectual type – it seems I’m a “Visionary Philosopher” – and went to the answer key. Guess what? I did answer everything correctly!
Apparently, 144 is the maximum IQ you can get on this test. Unless, of course, they score it based on something other than right answers, such as the amount of time taken. But nothing in the test instructions or score report suggested that. To test this possibility, I took the test again, this time inputting what I already knew were the correct answers as fast as I possibly could. The result? 144. Maybe they take your age or education into account? I tried again, saying I was only 20 years old and didn’t have a college degree. 144.
It’s not terribly surprising that a 40-question test can’t make very fine distinctions in the upper and lower tails of the distribution. But if this is “the most thorough and scientifically accurate IQ Test on the Web,” I’m not impressed.