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IQ Test for 5 Year Old

By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D

Q: I am interested to let my son who will turn 5 in Nov to take a IQ Test. This is new to me and I hope to have more understanding about the tests recommended .What are the tests being recognize and suitable for 5 years old? Is WISC and Stanford Binet more popular and recognize? Where can I get him tested? Thanks.

A: There are many tests available for a 5 year old. The Wechsler's (WPPSI) and Standard-Binet would be suitable (for WISC, starting age is 6). These tests are standardized tests and recognized. They are comprehensive tests and required the child to be with the examiner for at least an hour or more. You would need to seek a private educational psychologist for testing (either in private clinics or hospitals).

However, it is best not to test the child very early unless you have a valid reason for your child to undergo the test at a young age. Depending on parents' anxiety levels, it may affect the child as well. And as for standardized tests, you may not retest for approximately two years.

At a younger age, there are chances for scores to be unstable and possibly less reliable. Same scores may not be seen after some years. If this is the case, then these unstable IQ score may make a mark in parents' minds. This "stuck number" may then compromise parents' ability to make appropriate choices later rather than follow the child's lead.

You may also need to consider the reason you want to get testing done and what you would do with the information. If your child appears to have a learning problem, and you want to make sure the areas of strength and weakness; you have a good reason to test - for early intervention (usually your paediatrician would have advised you here). If there is no strong reason apart from validating your hunch about the child, leave it for couple of years more. Test scores should not determine parenting needs.

Unfortunately, I'm not much in favour of testing very young children, as it is rarely necessary. Unless you child has developmental concerns or any other learning concerns that requires testing, you could leave it for a few more years when the child is much older and more stable.

Here's wishing you all the best.


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