Talk:Arthur Jensen

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Im too lazy to correct it myself, but the page says "heritability measures the percentage of variation of a trait due to inheritance, within a population." This is not true. Heritability measures variance attributable to genes either within or between groups. The "criticism" here is that Jensen supposedly derives emperical conclusions about between-group heritability FROM within group h2 values.

Is the criticism section from Gould supposed to be in this article?-Grick 06:04, Feb 24, 2005 (UTC)

Why wouldn't it be? Given the controversial nature of Jensen's research and conclusions, I don't think it is beyond the pale to juxtapose it with criticism from a prominent source. --Fastfission 00:48, 26 Feb 2005 (UTC)


"Jensen is both among the most eminent psychologists of the twentieth century[3] and a highly controversial figure."

I believe that the source for this assertion is not from a very NPOV source, I wouldn't say Jensen ranks among the most eminent psychologists of the 20th century.

You might what to find a third party source for support. Otherwise, it appears that you've done nothing but state your own 'point of view' - at least twice.

References for removed image[edit]

Re the section: IQ and academic achievement[edit]

There are several things in this section that do not accord with my recollections of Jensen's work, such that his position is described in more controversial terms than is warranted. His 1969 article, "How Much Can We Boost IQ and Scholastic Achievement?" reported IQ scores for many populations from within the United States, but I don't think it reported data from populations of other countries. Thus the sentence containing the phrase: "... conceptual learning, or synthesizing ability, occurs with significantly greater frequency in whites than in non-whites," does not reference the context of discussion, which was focussed on the troubling differences in school based performance between Black Americans and Caucasian Americans. Jensen found these differences troubling; he did not interpret these differences to draw prejudicial conclusions or to support prejudicial attitudes.

Further, I don't think Jensen drew conclusions about world-wide racial groups, and I don't think he tried to establish that there was a hierarchy of races. He was interested in boosting IQ and scholastic achievement. This section gives the misleading impression that Jensen claimed that Caucasians were superior to all other races. Jensen certainly did not claim that Caucasians scored higher than the Oriental races. I recall that his article contained data from American populations of Chinese origin, and that the IQ scores for those populations were very high.

I remember clearly that Jensen's emphasis was on racial differences rather that racial superiority or inferiority. The articled ended with a discussion of the likelihood that Black American students would benefit from a different style of teaching than the one that appeared to be successful with Caucasian American students; that is, he presented the view that one of the differences between these two races involved learning style, such that Black students had been and still were at a educational disadvantage, because conventional teaching practices were better suited to the learning style of Caucasian Americans. Jensen was quite hopeful about this and advocated for the relevant research to be done.

I may make some revisions after I have reviewed the relevant references. Discussion is welcome, of course. Janice Vian, Ph.D. (talk) 01:03, 9 November 2017 (UTC)

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NPOV violation with "debunking"[edit]

User MPants at work reversed my revision with the following reason.:

If academics do not accept Jensen's work (and they don't), then the debunkings WERE successful.

My remark on my edit was:

more NPOV wording (debunking is a success word, i.e. implies success of the action, whereas rebuttal or criticism does not)

Which seems to me like a NPOV violation as well as being false. Jensen's views are well accepted according to multiple surveys of experts. Almost everything he argued for in the 1969 paper is now the mainstream opinion (see e.g. and, as well as the special issue about Jensen in 1998 Reading mainstream textbooks on the topic also reveals that Jensen's work is well-cited and well-regarded. For instance, Richard Haier wrote in his 2017 textbook on The Neuroscience of Intelligence that:

I also strongly recommend that any student interested in pursuing a career in intelligence research using neuroscience or other approaches read Jensen’s 1969 article. It is often cited, often misrepresented, and in my view, a classic work of psychology that still suggests important ideas and hypotheses to test with modern methods. (p. 74)

The book contains 7 citations to Jensen's works, including the 1969 paper. Given the above, if not contested, I will revert to the NPOV wording again within a few days. Deleet (talk) 21:54, 14 March 2018 (UTC)

The frontiers publications are fringe publications, not accepted science. Intelligence is an almost-walled-garden of racialist (read: racist) thought and it's editor is well-known as one of the signatories of "Mainstream Science on Intelligence", a work which grossly mischaracterized several aspects of psychology in order to attempt to legitimize a link between race and intelligence which the mainstream of intelligence research had largely abandoned by that point. That same editor is the one you subsequently quote. The mainstream view of intelligence according to every reputable neurologist, psychologist, psychiatrist and cultural anthropologist I have ever spoken to or read the works of is that environmental factors play a role which overwhelms any hereditary role. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 22:18, 14 March 2018 (UTC)
Hmm, the quote pulled from the cited source says "The article itself became one of the most highly cited in the history of psychology, but many of the citations were rebuttals of Jensen's arguments or used the paper as an example of controversy." It sounds like we should use the word "rebuttals", but not the word "debunking", if we're going to fairly represent the source. —Ashley Y 02:57, 15 March 2018 (UTC)
I agree that rebuttal is better. It doesn't seem like a success word to me, though I couldn't find any compiled list of these. The term seems to be fairly obscure and mainly used in philosophy of language. Is there a standard Wikipedia policy on dealing with success words when describing arguments back and forth on an issue without implicitly assuming who is right (not exactly here or here)? Other non-success and thus NPOV nouns are criticism, response rejoinder. Deleet (talk) 04:13, 15 March 2018 (UTC)
Generally the policy is to fairly represent the reliable sources. I think it's OK to show that something has been "debunked" if we can show some kind of consensus of sources that says that. Otherwise I would avoid the word. —Ashley Y 05:23, 15 March 2018 (UTC)
I agree, but it is safe to say that Jensen's views in the 1969 article were never debunked in that sense. Almost every point he put forward in the 1969 article is now mainstream opinion according to textbooks and expert surveys. Jensen pointed it out in 1998: the mainstream moved to his positions. Only the hypothesis about genetic causation of the US Black-White gap remains contentious with authors rarely taking an affirmative stance in public, though anonymous surveys find that it too is quite mainstream belief. This is also my experience with in talking to researchers in private. I will thus change the wording to rebuttal as agreed upon. Deleet (talk) 03:06, 20 March 2018 (UTC)
Oh, turned out that NPalgan2 has already made the edit. Deleet (talk) 03:08, 20 March 2018 (UTC)