Psychological Myths Debunked- IQ, Divided Brain, Handwriting

I had written this essay for a Psychology class and i just thought i should share it with you all, hope you enjoy.

Why do people impulsively accept beliefs?      Is this a matter of recognized “freedom?”

Could it be the innate nature of competitiveness that seduces reason to inevitable self-deception?

Perhaps it is all about competition, bred by the primal factor needing to chase perfection. Perhaps it is about conformity that frames private adaptations of unexplored traditions, truths and identities. No matter the reason, one thing is for sure; “will” is easily lost in translation. It is easier to adopt common truths in order to grasp cultural acceptance than it is to question conflicting ideas of perceived perfections. There is an attractive bliss in surfing the waves of popular “logic,” but we must seek to unmask intrusive information that could be deceptive. Statistical beliefs supporting concepts like the intelligence quotient (IQ) tests being a true representation of intelligence, the black and white reliance of being either left-brained or right-brained , and the belief on handwriting as a mood ring-like identifier of human personality. In the fallowing essay I will be introducing these beliefs by testing the reliability of the IQ consistency, the right or left brained scientifically reasoned identity, and the acknowledgement of handwriting as a true personality identifier. I will begin by introducing the origins of the IQ test and its own originality. Then, I will undress the “logical” reasoning behind the commonly conceived left-brained or right brained personality. Finally, I will explore the reasoned belief that handwriting determines human personality.

The Lore of IQ Tests

The Intelligence Quotient (IQ) test is known as a leading standardized test in which cognitive competence is reliably measured to define human mental competence; this is done by assessing a person’s flexibility, multi-tasking ability, and fast reaction time by the determinant qualities of timed complex questions, problems-solving of long lasting questions (“What is an”, 2003). This test has unbelievably become popular in providing “sound evidence” as a basis for self-evident confidence. Moreover, it has become globally and industrially reliable by classifying general representation of world-wide academic and professional population. However, this test was not intended to be used for adults or to determine high scoring mental proficiency, instead it was destined to measured children’s low-level scores to determine cognitive deficiency in biologically immature and psychologically developing children (“What is an”, 2003). Thus, the original purpose of the IQ test was plagiarized and wrongfully rearranged.

To begin with, Thomas J. Hally, author and Vice President of the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry introduced the roots of this maladapted and misrepresented IQ test. He also stated that the roots of this test came from the works of German Psychologist William Stern, psychologists Alfred Binet, and Theodore Simon; these three innovators intended to quantify IQ low-levels of children but were unsuccessful and unreliable in attempts to assume academic correlation (2012). However, later, this test was reintroduced and supported as sound methodology as a way to prove highly assumptive mental dominance by analyzing “attention, memory and problem solving . . . previously introduced as the methodology to define a childs “mental age” (“A Brief History”, Para 1). This coined concept of “mental age” was a creation meant to measure “low Scores” differing between children to assess abnormal cognitive and mental functioning (“A Brief History”, Para 1). The intended purpose of differentiating children’s mental capacity through relative age-related correlation existed to provide cognitive aides for the improvement of their abnormal developmental targeting the improvement to nurture what their developmental stage intelligence “should be” (“What is an”, 2003).

                         IQ Tests Fallacies                                                      

In addition to the misguided use of the original IQ test, newly adopted tests like the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), the Weschler and the Standford-Binet test have been inadequately originated as well (Hally, 2012). Hally’s pointed statement in regard to the fallacious aims of the IQ test was expanded from him recognized occurrence of the IQ test being used on illiterate recruited soldiers and foreign New York immigrants (2009). Here the flaws of the IQ tests became noticeable since the groups taking the general IQ test were not from the United States. Thus, the multicultural and globalization expansion conflicts the accuracy of an ideal score due to diverse and different cultured intelligence would easily target contrasting standards and definitions of intelligence: “IQ test results were inappropriately used to make false generalizations and to verify the claim of “surprisingly low intelligence” (“A brief History”, Para 3). Further, more IQ test inaccuracy stemmed from the assessment of reaction times in long complex problems (“What is an”, 2003). The fallacy here is that speedy reaction time in test taking is not a well adjusted determinant of intelligence, or lack thereof. Besides the primal biological factors and physical limitations, a framed reaction time was complicated by the fact that everyone is different. However, different does not mean a person with slower reaction time is not intelligent enough to answer highly complex questions. This is because the over generalized standard of time is overly dependent and assumptive dismissing critical variables carrying differing dimensions of the definition for the term intelligence (“What is an”, 2003).

Consider one of history’s most influential thinkers, also known for his high influential intelligence, Albert Einstein. When Einstein was asked in regards to the discovery of Law of Universal Gravitation, he said, “By thinking on it continually . . . I keep the subject constantly before me and wait till the first dawning’s open slowly, by little and little, into a full and clear light” (“Newton, Darwin & Einstein,” 2013). Admittedly, Einstein was a slow thinker, but this in no way made him less intellectually and intelligently capable. This only further proves that while some people may have attention/concentration (slow reaction time) deficits, they do not necessarily represent as the dismissive outlier of intelligence. Arguably, it can easily be pointed out that Einstein scored a high IQ score, yes it is valid. However, lost in translation and lost in intention, the IQ tests have over time defined different generalizations and standards for intelligence (“What is an”, 2003). Thus, while in the time Einstein took the IQ test and scored significantly high, efficient global data was not exactly fairly represented in order to realistically consider him higher than average in IQ. According to the Lisa Trahan, Karla K. Stuebing, Merril K. Hiscock, and Jack M. Fletcher’s journal “The Flynn Effect: A Metta Analysis” states the former global representation or the IQ is more accurate due less biased and improved representative samples of the global populous (2014). Thus, Einstein’s IQ today could have been standard due to the more effective populous count for less biased statistical representation (“What Does the Flynn Effect” n.d.). “more accurate” tests could be reasoned by Author and professors Scott O. LIlienfeld and Steven Jay Lynn determined Einstein’s Score average, even lower than average (“What is an”, 2003). Honestly testified by the recognizable IQ testing Autumn Group:

“In recent years, a number of theorists have argued that standard intelligence tests measure only a portion of the human abilities that could be considered aspects of intelligence. Other scholars believe that such tests accurately measure intelligence and that the lack of agreement on a definition of intelligence does not invalidate its measure
meant” (“What is an”, 2003).

Consecutively, where Einstein might have been more logically minded, he might have lacked proficient intelligences or competence, in artistic creativity, physical ability, and his score could have just have been bias based misrepresented considering the lack of global evidence to fairly represent him at a higher intelligence. Also, realizing that he admitted to thinking slower, the test in reaction time could have resulted, again, today, at an average or lower than average score; this is simply because of the test fallacious need to have speedy reaction time on complex problems that could be rightly answered just in less time.

Thus, a good question to ask here is, how can an appropriate “objective result” have been proclaimed when only a selective percentage of the population most likely participated in completing the same test?

Right-brained Vs. Left-brained

Second myth, is that there is a deceiving belief that a black and white determination of a person being either strongest-minded on either the right-half or Left-half, of the brains hemisphere. It is believed that people are either right brained, meaning known to be creative and free-spirited at mind, or that people are left brained, meaning known to be more logical and analytically minded (“An Evaluation of the” 2013). Whilst each hemisphere of the brain is known to portray certain stronger activity, it would be inconclusive and complicated to assume one can be either left or right brained.

The left brain is known for it’s dominance in language and is credited with the processing of most logical distributions. The right brain is known for its dominance in spatial and face recognition, music processing, but overlooked for its involvement in the logical contributions that overlap with the left brain functions. It is overlooked to critically think that the brain works on a global scale as opposed
to a localized level determining a stronger dependence of one side of the brain due coincidental factors, biological predispositions, or subconscious determinants/detriments: Thus the assumption is “results imply lateralization is a local property rather than a whole-brain property” due to concentrated statistical evidence segregating half-sided “functional connectivity” (“An Evaluation of the” 2013).

Pro Split-Mind 

Where did this idea rise from anyway? Nobel Prize-Winner Roger Sperry and associated colleagues were the last and most significantly recognized physiologists to execute
studies on the roles of the brain hemisphere, in this case, extensively on the left hemisphere (“The Split Brain”, 2014). In the 1960s Roger Sperry’s research on the left hemisphere, he discovered that “certain brain injuries, made it possible to suspect that the language center” in the brain was situated in the left hemisphere (“Robert Spenrry”2008). This research was conducted by mistake on the observed results of neurosurgical procedures in the brains left hemisphere due to “excessive signaling of nerve cells” (“The Split Brain”, 2014). As a result, patients showed signs of speech deficiency and numbing on one side of the brain making it hard to recall experiences, and thus memory and localized-perceived dysfunction is more relied upon research as opposed to the concept that the brain works at a globalized functionality (“The Split Brain”, 2014). For example, the study done in the journal “An Evaluation of the Left-Brain vs. Right-Brain Hypothesis with Resting State Functional Connectivity” conducted by Nielsen JA, Zielinski BA, Ferguson MA, Lainhart JE, Anderson JS:

Our data is broadly consistent with previous studies regarding the spatial distribution of lateralization of functional connectivity. We find that brain regions showing consistently strong left-lateralization include classical language regions (Broca Area, Wernicke Area, lateral premotor, and anterior supplementary motor areas) (2013).

Split-Mind Bias

As a result, continuous studies have popularly pressed the idea that people are either more right-brained emotional and artistic, or left-brined and more serious and communicative (“The Split Brain”, 2014). Authors of the book based on “50 great myths of popular psychology: Shattering widespread misconceptions about human behavior,” Lilienfeld, S. L., Ruscio, J., & Beyerstein, B, state that more critical thinking approaches are needed to accurately access “Psychological Science and Common Sense” (2009). Moreover, the importance of avoiding dependence of information at face value infects and influences a “Pos Hoc Reasoning,” meaning, “after this, therefore because of this,” (2009). With this in recommended consideration this book acknowledges the, “the most dramatic evidence for laterality of function— the superiority of one or the other hemisphere for performing certain tasks—comes from patients who’ve undergone a “split brain” operation” (2009). Thus, while evidence like the conducted research on “An Evaluation of the Left-Brain vs. Right-Brain Hypothesis with Resting State Functional Connectivity,” is complicated for its overdependence on the effects of the results of “Split-mind” surgery. Continuously, concluding:

“Using Sperry’s techniques, researchers have confirmed that the left and right hemispheres are relatively better at different mental activities. Note, however, that we wrote relatively better. The two halves of the brain differ in how they process tasks rather than what they process (McCrone, 1999). . . “language, for example,” “left hemisphere is better at speech, such as grammar and word generation, whereas the right hemisphere is better at the intonation and emphases of speech (what’s known as “prosody”).” Although the right hemisphere is better at nonlinguistic functions involving complex visual and spatial processes, the left hemisphere plays some role in these capacities if we give it the chance. The right brain is better at dealing with a general sense of space, whereas corresponding areas in the left brain become active when the person locates objects in specific places. In many cases, it’s not that one hemisphere or the other can’t perform a given task; it’s just that one of them can perform it faster and better than the other. So it tends to grab the assignment first”” (2009).

Thus, simply because “pop psychology” (“50 greatest myths”, 2009) has influenced and supported a strongly biased inclination to side with an abundant amount of differences, the kind of differences are limited by the more true and real understanding of how the brain functions in all of its complexity. For example, while it may be evident that some specialization of activities show higher brain functioning on a focalized area for a short amount of time, general more abundant functioning of the brain like math, only work best in the light of the two hemispheres. Like Sperring stated, after a “spilt-mind” surgery, the mind was spilt and significantly left deficit, impaired to full functioning.

Handwriting Speaks

How can it be true that due to handwriting you can be know as a smarter, sloppy, or intellectual person?

Graphology, or the analytical study of handwriting, is said to determine personality, and is somewhat scientifically supported but mostly due to the pseudoscientific evidence encouraging a need to self-identify and self-determinate. You know? That need to categorize people in order to have confidence ion conceptualization. This same self-serving study directed my pseudoscience, a fake profitable “science”, only intends to masquerade existing vulnerabilities and insecurities of others with some pity observational statistics from controlled groups and studies. They run by the means of biased and questionable intentions.
There are many occurrences for which the categorization defining this evidence can be flawed. First of all, just because an arm breaks or you happen to have nerve damage, and your forced to write with your left hand forever cannot suffice to define you as a type of person: your lack of proficiency for the one hand you are forced to use can easily misguide someone judging you based on your writing. Also, because you may have a medical condition, different structural hand or fingers this does not make you less happy or a disordered person, more family oriented or friendly. This is much like the Rorschach test in the way that it is all a matter of perception, to think that a factual meaningless idea, picture, or style, can define you mentally in a dark place or worse. This is in no way to debunk therapeutic methods of psychotherapy, which are increasingly discredited approaches, but this is a matter of factual biased misconceptions. These same misconceptions and false evidence lead to the harm of others and rob people from an opportunity to introduce themselves. For example, the situational pressure from applying at a new job caused by anxiety. You are asked to write a personal experience, not timed, but from temporary anxiety, which is normal, you could be nervous or even over-confident and this could affect the careless grip or undesirable slant of the way in which a letter or certain sentences come out. You could be simply trying to impress the reader so much that you lose yourself into their interpretation of you mistaken writing.

This is very similar to the concept if body language as well. While body language has more physiological and biological evidence, critical factors like culture, age, health, and attitude, or situational mental processes, can easily misrepresent undesired behavior. An impulsive reactioncould be misinterpreted by a body language enthusiast. When one person was simply crossing their arms because they were cold, they could be perceived as closed to conversation and interaction when it is just not simply the case. Culturally, where in some countries it is rude to stare and in others it is the opposite: in some countries it is rude to slurp your soup in Japan it is a behavior of confidence. so on and so on.


Conclusively, regardless of all the support of psychological myths such as these that are in the world, there is no defense credible and consistent enough to compensate for these fallacious reasoned research. The only foolproof repellent to know the truth is to do educated research through internal processing based on doubt. It is thought the active conscious awareness and the interest of intellect that will rid bias reasoning from common misconceptions. As reasoned throughout this essay, weakened perception and inability to go beyond the common and popular facts can only cause inconsistency. The beliefs that qualitative tests can be trusted, is a much more complex answer than a yes or no.

  • IQ test inconsistency are based on the manipulation of predetermined targeted audience, remember it was meant for childre with special learning needs not for generalizing all adults intelligence. We now know, the tests have changed over time in relation to more socio-cultural detriments, complexities and multicultural diversity.
  • The simple concept that a person can be either more right or left brained may be somewhat scientifically reasoned, however, it is more altered to make people conceive that they are an either or categorization. More rational and true evidence will suggest that the complexities to the contraction of the brain are not measurable by focusing on localized observations rather by the sum of all the brains parts and globalized interaction.
  • Finally, the acknowledgement of handwriting as a true personality identifier is a very over credited fallacy, merely introduced for entertainment.

By this token, Ladies and Gentlemen we must not believe everything we hear or read. We must aspire to the truth respectably. The day curiosity is abandoned, is the day freedom’s chained to ignorance as compensation for true wisdom.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s