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Lewis Terman

American psychologist whose notable work was concentrated in the areas of intelligence testing and the comprehensive study of intellectually gifted children.

Terman was born in Indiana and attended Indiana University and Clark University. He served on the faculty of Stanford University as professor of education

Lewis Terman (Archives of the History of American Psychology. Reproduced with permission.)

and as professor of psychology. In 1916, Terman published the first important individual intelligence test to be used in the United States, the Stanford-Binet Intelligence scales. This test was an American revision and expansion of the Binet-Simon intelligence test, which had been developed in France. Along with the Stanford-Binet, Terman introduced the term intelligence quotient, or I.Q., and its formulation. This concept, and the Stanford-Binet test, became very widely used in the measurement of intelligence. Terman believed that society has a need to identify academically gifted children and to provide them with appropriate educational opportunities. In 1921, he began a thoroughly exhaustive and very long term study of such children. The results of this study, which are scheduled to be announced in the year 2010, may be found in Genetic Studies of Genius (1926). Terman's other books include: The Measurement of Intelligence (1916), Sex and Personality (1936), and The Gifted Child Grows Up (1947).

See also Binet, Alfred.

Further Reading

Minton, Henry L. Lewis M. Terman. New York: New York University Press, 1988.

Additional topics

Psychology EncyclopediaFamous Psychologists & Scientists