In an article published on EdNews Daily, Roger Stark and Betsy Hill wrote,
Back in 2011, researchers at University College London offered dramatic, direct evidence that intelligence can change after early childhood. The study was characterized as providing “new hope for boosting the brain’s abilities.”
In the study, there was no purposeful intervention or attempt to change the participants’ intelligence, but some teens experienced gains or losses in IQ of as much as 20 points. The results suggested to some that intentional efforts could have an impact. Dr. Frances Jensen, a neurologist at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital Boston, said, “It suggests there’s still plasticity at this stage … so you can still work on weaknesses and enhance strengths.”
Based on what we have been hearing in the last few days from therapists working with individuals in their teens and 20s, there is plenty of plasticity to take advantage of. What they’ve shared with us underscores how pioneering this field is and the amazing plasticity of intelligence.
One client wrote to us about a young man in his 20s classified as Educable Mentally Handicapped. The term is also expressed as Educable Intellectual Disability and refers to individuals with a mild or high-moderate degree of intellectual disability, that is, with IQs in the 50 to 70 range. The “educable” descriptor suggest that these individuals are capable of achieving approximately a fifth-grade academic level.
This young man used cognitive skills training software for 18 months and completed all 168 levels in the program. When he was recently assessed using the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS), his IQ was measured as average (85 to 115).