PRAESUM MENTIS GENIUS CONTINUUM
This international network has
formed to elaborate on the extant high I.Q. organizations,
and to provide a broader criteria base for admission that is still quite stringent.
Though a score within the top
percentile range of a standardized I.
Q. test certainly implies a broad range of genius capabilities,
what actually constitutes intelligence is at best nebulous -- at worst
exclusionary --following cultural trends. I.Q. tests are probably
accurate in apprehending genius under certain conditions, but other
manifestations of genius are now being accepted as intrinsically valuable
as part of the genius continuum. These other, more specific types of
genius may escape appraisal because of its occurence in context; or even
misinterpreted as evidence of low cognitive functioning.
Gifted children, as qualitatively
described by the federal Javits
Gifted and Talented Education Act, exhibit the following characteristics:
...perform or show the potential
for performing at remarkably high
levels of accomplishment when compared with others of their age,
experience, or environment...[they] exhibit high performance capability
in intellectual, creative, and/or artistic areas, possess an unusual
leadership capacity, or excel in specific academic fields...
"The Mensa Think Smart
Book" (Drs. Abbie F. Salny and Lewis Burke
Frumkes, 1986) notes that according to the U.S. Office of Education, that
of the estimated 2.5 million gifted children in the U.S., 1/2 go
unidentified. There is even more reason to believe that adult geniuses go
unidentified, as they are less likely to be evaluated, and when they are,
the broad criteria outlined above ceases to be used as an evaluative
Praesum Mentis has been designed
to include (under rigorous
criteria) those people of genius who excel not only in general
intelligence, but those exhibiting genius in special areas of
intelligence and in revolutionary ways.
EXAMPLES OF MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCE
According to Howard Gardner
(Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple
Intelligences, 1983) there are 7 distinguishable types of intelligence:
1) Logical-mathematical. This type
of intelligence is readily
and historically associated with genius, and often labelled "scientific
thinking." Logical-mathematical intelligence is concerned with patterns
relationships and measurement. Those gifted in this area may score
poorly on standardized I.Q. tests, because they may see connections or
patterns not intended by those designing the tests, and see multiple
2) Linguistic. Linguistic
intelligence is utilized in
communication and the communicative arts. Genius in this area might be
expressed through the publication of controversial scientific papers, a
revolutionary work of prose, etc...
3) Spatial. This type of
intelligence rests on environmental awareness,
or spatial relationships. Areas of expression include (but are not
limited to) the visual arts, engineering and architecture.
4) Interpersonal. Interpersonal
intelligence relies on intuitive
functions and social expertise. Those gifted with interpersonal genius
are often leaders, and institute reform.
5) Musical. One commonly
appreciated example of giftedness in this area
of intelligence is that of the children virtuosi.
6) Bodily-kinesthetic. This
intelligence is expressed through the body as
an instrument. A genius in this area may revolutionize a sport, or a
school of dance.
7) Intrapersonal. This type of
intelligence allows one to understand
one's self, to heed inner intuition. This thinking skill is linked with
revelation, synthesis, discovery, and invention.
THE CRITERIA FOR ADMISSION
Applicants should score at or
above the 97th percentile (top 3% of
the tested population) on a standardized test of cognitive functioning.
Examples: California Test of Mental Maturity, California Test of
Cognitive Skills, Cattell, Cattell Culture Fair, Stanford Binet,
Otis-Lennon tests, or at or above the 97th percentile in at least three
subtests of the PSAT, SAT, GRE, Wechsler Adult and children Intelligence
Scale, or Woodcock-Johnson tests...
The applicant must have generated
a significant body of work in
their area of expertise, skill or talent that is demonstrably
unique and revolutionary in nature.
By combining elements of
standardized testing with evidence
of creative achievement, the members will presumably reflect the ability
to synthesize a firm grasp of certain accepted thinking strategies with
demonstrated capacity to offer evolutionary contributions to human
thinking potential. Admittedly, these criteria will still only reflect a
small area of the genius continuum.
Children and young adults under 18
can be considered on an
individual basis. Praesum Mentis acknowledges their special challenges
and needs and will err in favor of the young applicant given sufficient proof of their giftedness.
Special cases will also be
considered on an individual basis.
Nominations for membership can be made by a third party. Inquiries
should be directed to the contact listed at the end of the web
TO APPLY TO P.M.G.C.
The applicant should send: (a) a
copy of their qualifying cognitve
functioning score on the official stationary of, and signed by, a licensed
test administrator (b) evidence of the qualifying work along with proof of
its revolutionary quality (c) an extensive cover letter and vitae with
contact number and address (d) a one time $30.00 criteria assessment fee
(or any lower amount commensurate with financial circumstance) to:
PRAESUM MENTIS GENIUS CONTINUUM
c/o Dawn Prince-Hughes
2415 Grant st.
Bellingham, WA 98225 USA
The applicant will be notified by
mail of their acceptance, at which
time a membership certificate and identification card will be sent as well.
Members will be aided in networking with members both locally and on the
basis of shared fields of interest. An annual $10.00 criteria updating
fee (or any lower amount commensurate with financial circumstance) will be
utilized to facilitate up-to-date interfield member networking.
Please consider Praesum Mentis a
resource for information in the
areas of intelligence (in its multivariate forms), issues pertaining to
gifted adults and their emotional, social and intellectual needs, and
gifted children and their similar needs. We are happy to assist those
in need by offering aid in research and support.