Letter: Confusing intelligence with class

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The Independent Online
Sir: Peter Saunders was correct in stating that the argument over the validity of IQ tests as a measure of intelligence has never been resolved.

However, he seems to believe that it is valid to take movement between the middle and lower classes as a measure, using IQ scores to illustrate his argument, before concluding that they are not needed to support it.

The fact that Britain looks like the ideal meritocratic society he has used in his argument does not mean that it operates in the same way. The average member of the 'underclass' he refers to has to overcome many more hurdles in making it to the middle class than someone who was born into it.

Having grown up among those he would describe as the underclass, I have made it to university and aspire further. I have left behind me many intelligent people who, with the right resources at the right time, could have been at least as capable as many from middle- class backgrounds whom I now see around me.

Yours faithfully, KEITH PHILPOTT (undergraduate in psychology) University of Manchester Manchester 26 October

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