Normal IQ Scores: How Do You Measure Up?

Learning that your intelligence falls within the range of normal IQ scores can be a huge relief — or a big disappointment. It all depends on where you are coming from!

For many of us, being “normal” is a good thing — particularly when it comes to intelligence. No one wants to fall at the lower end of the scale.

Then again, too much intelligence isn’t necessarily a good thing. Many people with high intelligence have difficulty socializing, and for them, having a lower and more normal IQ might even be a huge relief.

Think Sheldon from Big Bang Theory, one of our favourites…big IQ, low EQ (emotional intelligence).

What are Normal IQ Scores?

Experts define an average IQ score as 100. Ultimately, normal IQ scores fall between 85 and 115.

In terms of what’s average, a full 95 per cent of us have IQ test scores that fall between 70 and 130. To narrow it down a bit more…68 per cent of the population has an IQ that falls between 85 points and 115 points. Those 68 per cent fall within one standard deviation (measured at 15 points) or an average IQ of 100 points.

Wondering where exactly you fall in the scale? The chart below will give you a good indication:

Keeping it Fair

As new IQ tests are developed, experts ensure that the tests are tweaked to ensure that the bulk of the population continues to fall within one standard deviation of average. That helps keeps IQ test results consistent — and comparable.

One thing to remember is that all IQ tests are not created equal. There’s something called the Flynn Effect, which basically means people are getting smarter generation by generation. Overall, that’s probably a good thing — but it does complication things when it comes to IQ test scoring. So for that reason, the Flynn Effect is in play, and tests are automatically adjusted every few years to adjust for the increase in intelligence in the general population.

There’s more information about the IQ test scale here.

What does your IQ test score mean, practically speaking?

When you are talking about normal IQ scores, it’s important to remember that they are only measuring intelligence. They test for your ability to see patterns with words and numbers, to solve problems, to understand and apply things you have learned. They don’t measure your emotional wellness, or your psychological status.

Remember, you can be super-smart but not so well adjusted!

Interesting trivia? People whose IQs fall between 80 and 90 are more likely to commit crimes than people who have IQ levels lower or higher than that range.

In terms of career options, people with average IQs have a lot of options open to them. They can be managers, professional and clerical staff, craftsmen and college graduates…there aren’t many restrictions. People employed as medical doctors and PhDs do tend to fall in the higher IQ ranges — in the vicinity of 125.

You can learn more about genius IQ here.

Generally speaking, there aren’t measurable differences in how men and women perform on IQ tests.

When Normal’s Not Enough

Decided that normal IQ scores aren’t good enough for you? There are many great ways to boost your IQ and transcend the average.

Diet, mood and supplements all play a big role.

You can learn more about ways to boost your test scores here. 

Interested in taking a test to measure your IQ? You can check out our top five picks for free iq tests here.

And if you think you are way past normal, try taking a Mensa IQ test. Getting a passing grade will guarantee you entry to the elite Mensa organization, and will be proof that your IQ is within the top 2 per cent of the population.