Intelligence is a term describing a property of the mind including related abilities, such as the capacities for abstract thought, understanding, communication, reasoning, learning, learning from past experiences, planning, and problem solving.
The Study of Intelligence
Intelligence is most widely studied in humans, but is also observed in animals and plants. Artificial intelligence is the intelligence of machines or the simulation of intelligence in machines.
Numerous definitions of and hypotheses about intelligence have been proposed since before the twentieth century, with no consensus yet reached by scholars. Within the discipline of psychology, various approaches to human intelligence have been adopted, with the psychometric approach being especially familiar to the general public. Influenced by his cousin Charles Darwin, Francis Galton was the first scientist to propose a theory of general intelligence; that intelligence is a true, biologically-based mental faculty that can be studied by measuring a person’s reaction times to cognitive tasks. Galton’s research in measuring the head sizes of British scientists and laymen led to the conclusion that head-size is unrelated to a person’s intelligence.
Alfred Binet, and the French school of intelligence, believed intelligence was an aggregate of dissimilar abilities, not a unitary entity with specific, identifiable properties.