The strongest correlation between IQ and the SAT is on the verbal section of the SAT.
Almost all the studies that demonstrate this connection are based on the SAT that existed up until the early 1990s. The subsequent version of the SAT involved a signficiant renorming. On the verbal section, the person who got a 730 or above on the old test now received an 800. The current average Harvard student's verbal SAT of say 740 would equal 680 on the old SAT or 1.8 standard deviations. 1.8 multiplied by 15 points per standard diviation equals approximately 27 points. So a Harvard student's IQ would be approximately 127 by this calculation.
Of course, all of that depends on believing in the concept of IQ.
Everyone here is forgetting that it is very unlikely that the NATIONAL population mean score on the SAT is the same as the mean score for the self-selected group of college-bound high school students who take the SAT. (That's an empirical question, but that is the way to bet in the absence of a study of SAT scores in a national norming population.) And just about everyone also is forgetting the point I have already made above: each test sorts its group of test-takers into a DIFFERENT rank order, so the most one can say is that as a group average all the test-takers with an SAT score of, say, 640 will have a range of IQ scores that will be centered around [whatever IQ score it is, on whatever brand of IQ test is being compared] but also include higher and lower IQ scores. AT THE INDIVIDUAL LEVEL, you can't predict an IQ score with good accuracy knowing only someone's SAT score.
I'm surprised, by the way, that no one here has yet mentioned the Study of Exceptional Talent, the study population of which includes alumni of a variety of schools.
Tokenadult, your point is moot.
No one here is saying that, given one's SAT score, an exact IQ score can be inferred. To do this would yield inaccurate estimations simply because any particular person can score a range of SAT scores in many different sittings. So no one is arguing with you there. Matching SAT scores and IQ scores must be done in ranges.
But this doesn't change the fact that the SAT does offer, within limits, indication of cognitive ability. It is pretty safe to say that someone who scored a 2000 will not later score a 2300, even if significantly better preparation was done before the second sitting. Rarely can preparation raise your composite score by more than 100 points or so. By the same token, someone who scored a 2300 is unlikely to score a 2100 in a second sitting.
That is why Harvard and the gang rely on the SAT so heavily in the admissions process. True, in the eyes of the adcom a 2300+ is not enough to prove true potential. But a 2000 sure is enough to disprove it.
People can and do raise their score hundreds of points. I did, and back in the days when it was considered more of an IQ test than it is now. Harvard and other schools demand high SATs not because they're intrinsically revealing, but because they get so many applicants that have them. When it comes to IQ and academic potential, the only advantage the SAT has is that it's a standard measure -- not that it's a good one. (When it comes to testing creativity and imagination -- two qualities that surely figure in academic and intellectual achievement -- the SAT is worthless. The very format of it -- multiple choice, with one correct answer -- is artificial and silly. The best you can say about it is that while a high score might indicate potential, a low score by no means disproves it.)
"I went from a 1280 (10th) (1920 on the new SAT) to a 2320 (11th) with minimal prep. It's definately not impossible to raise your score by 400 points."
That means you hadn't even looked at the SAT before you took it in the 10th grade and scored a 1280. The fact that you raised your score by 400 points with minimal prep shows you didn't do your best the first time.
The correlation between SAT scores and IQ might be strong, but I don't think that one causes another, since one can study for the SATs. I would guess the IQ's of Harvard students are only slightly above average. This is because:
a) Those that get into Harvard on their own merits do so because of a combination of activities, that don't all require a high IQ.
b) An amazingly high IQ is not needed to perform well in school, which is another academic factor taken into account by colleges.
c) Not everyone gets into Harvard based on their own merits.
I second the 1.5-2 SD above the mean guess. Typical post-college careers of Harvard students are fields in which most people are 1.5-2 SD. So that's as good a guess as any.
I would bet that the faculty IQ is higher than the student IQ.
Remember that this is to some extent under Harvard's control. It could select mainly for estimated g, or look among students with high enough g for other qualities that seem appealing. The latter approach might lower the overall average IQ, but raise the level of subsequent career sucess.
Given the limitations of IQ in predicting life sucess, even in highly g-dependent fields, why is the Harvard undergrad IQ interesting?
Everyone here is forgetting that it is very unlikely that the NATIONAL population mean score on the SAT is the same as the mean score for the self-selected group of college-bound high school students who take the SAT.
They occasionally take a national sample to correct the norm for this effect.
hahahha. my IQ is definitely not 140+ and i was admitted. no offense, but what a pointless thread. go do something fun! that's what's going to get you admitted into great colleges, not sitting around thinking about IQ scores.
hahahaha. some of my friends go to ivies and they're not smart. they're not any smarter than me but a bit more knowledgable in general culture and english since i moved to the states in 1997. i scored 141 on WAIS-scale a month after getting hit by a car with a concussion for insurance claims.
from my experience ive found that kids that work really hard score higher due to their prep. nowadays sat doesnt really mean squat since since all old sat's are recycled and sold to sat prep companies.
if u're still in hs and seek to better ur scores, i reccommend anything college board + princeton review