Does a high IQ score mean that you’re highly gifted?

It could mean that, yes – but before you make that conclusion, you should know that there is a difference between being intelligent and being an “IQ genius”. To put it this way, Albert Einstein’s IQ was an estimated 160, but this was not the only thing that made him fall into the “IQ genius” bracket. His innovative thinking and his ability to adapt to different circumstances, coupled with a very important ingredient called creativity, made him a genius. There are certain things that an IQ test can measure, and if you are feeling curious about your IQ level, why not take the test and find out.

Graphic of Albert Einstein, next to an atom

High IQ scores and the brain

The brain is an interesting organ. Scientists say that parts of its activity are responsible for making a person smart. A high IQ indicates that a person could possess exceptional abilities, even to the point of being an IQ genius. Geniuses have been portrayed in films for decades, Gifted, Shine, Good Will Hunting to name just a few, but what sets these people apart from genuinely smart people? Some say it is all in the brain. Was Einstein’s IQ so high because of some abnormality in his brain? When Einstein’s brain was examined, they found that he had a missing Sylvian fissure (the line that divides one part of the brain from another) which allowed different parts of his brain to communicate more effectively.

According to scientists, when examining children with a high IQ, many saw that their brains showed a higher level of interconnectivity, which means that their brains were likely able to handle a large amount of “traffic”. In other words, information gets collected and processed much quicker.

These days, the only tool we have for determining intelligence is the IQ test. In fact, many scientists and theorists who study the brain claim that a score of 100 or more, in any standardized IQ test, demonstrates a good level of intelligence.

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IQ Scale illustrating a high IQ and genius IQ

What is considered a high IQ score?

Over the last few decades, IQ tests have undergone several changes to ensure that they are socially and culturally appropriate and that they do not exclude certain groups and individuals.

If you scored between 80 and 100 on an IQ test, you are in the average range of intelligence. A score above 100 means that you are above average. If you scored between 120 and 140 you are considered gifted. However, if you scored between 140 and 160, you fall in the highly gifted zone. Achieving a high IQ score of above 140 means that you are among the 2% of the population who score in this range. What this means is that you might be able to qualify for membership in a high IQ society.

What are High IQ societies?

A high IQ society is an organization which you can only join if you achieve a certain high IQ score. One of the most famous high IQ societies is Mensa International which was founded in 1946. Membership at MENSA relies on being assessed by the American MENSA National Office under the supervision of a psychologist who then reviews your test score and decides whether you can join the organization or not.

Another high IQ society which also operates on a membership basis is Intertel. It was founded twenty years later in 1966. It has over 1400 members today from 30 nations. They encourage anyone who has scored highly on an accredited IQ test to apply for membership. The benefits of joining a high IQ society are mainly to feel a sense of belonging, but also to exchange ideas. Intertel also has a journal called Integra which is published 10 times a year. It encourages its members to engage with one another via online newsletters, emails and via online forums.

5 IQ geniuses who dropped out of school!

Yes, you read that right. Albert Einstein’s IQ certainly was high, but did you know that he dropped out of school at age fifteen? He also failed the entrance exam to the prestigious Swiss Federal Institute of Technology.

Now get this, Benjamin Franklin, scientist, inventor, politician, author and painter was certainly a jack of all trades, but he never graduated high school. In fact, he dropped out of school at age ten and went to work with his brother and father as a printer. He had a high IQ score of 160!

Richard Branson, self-made millionaire struggles with dyslexia. He had a difficult time at school, so he quit at age sixteen. He is now considered one of the richest entrepreneurs on the planet!

Thomas Edison also became a self-made millionaire with more than 1,000 patents to his name! According to his school-teachers though, he was deemed “addled”, because after an illness he was unable to think clearly at school. He only had 3 months of school education before being home-schooled by his school-teacher mom. Edison’s high IQ score was 145!

Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft has a high IQ score of 160! He scored 1590 out of 1600 on his Harvard Entrance Exam but dropped out of Harvard in his junior year to establish his multi-million-dollar software company.

Having a high IQ and high intelligence goes beyond an ability to memorize information or your performance in the classroom. You may not have excelled at school, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find your skill-set later in life. To be smart means that you are able to adapt to new situations, that you can learn from experience, and that you have the mental capability to apply your knowledge to new circumstances. You can find out what type of intelligence you have so that you can better understand how your brain works.