The Ladd School


The Ladd School

A 1937 Stanford-Binet intelligence testing kit.

Stanford-Binet Intelligence Measures



“In the old days, if they caught you on a street corner sucking your thumb and could catch you with a net, you had it."

Unmasking the Stanford-Binet Test: Unveiling Controversial Legacies

Behold the second-edition 1937 Stanford Binet, Form L, an intriguing artifact that takes us back to a significant era in the field of intelligence assessment. With its complete and remarkably preserved components, this test offers a tangible glimpse into the methods employed to measure human cognition.

Contained within a slide-top wooden box, this comprehensive kit includes over 40 items meticulously selected to evaluate an individual's mental capabilities. Among its contents, you will find an array of captivating objects such as beads, blocks, toys, and flashcards. These carefully designed tools, coupled with a hardcover instruction book and a test blank, allowed examiners to administer the assessment and determine a person's mental age.

Though the physical attributes of this artifact may appear innocuous, it is important to recognize the broader context in which it was employed. This test, while once considered a pioneering advancement in the understanding of human intelligence, was later criticized for its role in perpetuating discriminatory practices and institutionalization.

As we explore the Stanford-Binet Test, let us remember that its historical significance extends beyond its tangible form. It serves as a stark reminder of the ethical complexities associated with intelligence assessment, prompting us to reflect on the impact of such measures on individuals and society as a whole.


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