Psychology Melbourne Blog

News and Insights from the Science of the Mind

Top six things you need to know about IQ tests

Edited by Jill Wright,

Have you ever wondered what your IQ score is?

It's a lot more complex than the typical free, 20 questions type tests you can find on the Internet. They might help your ego, but they won't give you the real picture.

For that, you need a properly administered psychological test, and Psychology Melbourne provides that service.

One of our expert psychologists will provide a detailed assessment of your intellectual abilities which includes identifying your cognitive strengths and weaknesses.

Your psychologist can give you the results you need and explain how your IQ compares to the general population.

1. What is an IQ test?

Psychologists and other qualified mental health professionals use a variety of tests to measure common psychological problems experienced by older adolescents and adults.

Commonly referred to as intelligence or IQ testing, the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – Fourth Edition (WAIS-IV) is intended for use with adults aged 16 to 90 years.

The test measures cognitive abilities on four specific areas of intelligence: verbal comprehension, perceptual reasoning, working memory, and processing speed.

There are no significant risks involved in psychological testing. However, it’s normal to be anxious before taking a test when you’re uncertain about the results.

The best way to combat this is to view the testing process as a challenge and to give your best effort.

 2. How long does the test take to complete?

The WAIS-IV typically takes one to two hours to complete.

 3. Why would I choose to complete an IQ test?

Psychological tests are used to help understand a variety of mental abilities and attributes, including achievement, personality, and neurological functioning. 


The WAIS-IV is commonly used to help a person understand their intelligence and learning abilities.

The WAIS-IV can help to identify intellectual giftedness, intelligence strengths, learning difficulties and aspects of neuropsychological functioning. IQ assessment can help to guide educational decisions with older adolescents and adults and strategies to improve areas of learning difficulty.

4. Is there anything that can be done to improve my performance during a test?

It is recommended that you are well rested on the day of testing and have a nutritious meal beforehand.

You can use breathing relaxation or mindfulness exercises leading up to and during the testing process to help calm nervousness.

5. What will I gain from completing the test?

Psychological tests are an important way to gain information about specific cognitive abilities.

You’ll gain valid and reliable results that represent your unique strengths and weaknesses which can help you reach your potential. 

The results of psychological tests used in combination with clinical assessment information provide invaluable information to understand psychological problems. Scores from the IQ test can provide helpful feedback about treatment strategies or rehabilitation needs required to address identified learning difficulties.

6. What happens after the test?

The results of the IQ test are scored and interpreted into a professional report within only a few working days.

 You can then meet with your psychologist to discuss the results and raise any questions you may have.

An additional benefit of knowing your results is being able to discuss strategies to improve any areas of weaknesses that have been identified.

For more information

Psychology Melbourne now offers IQ testing for children and adults, visit the Test and Reports section of our website for further details and to make a booking.


About the editor, Jill Wright

Jill Wright (MAPS, AAFT, AICD) is the Director and Principal Psychologist at Psychology Melbourne. Jill was twice elected General Director of the Australian Psychological Society and established the APS Victorian branch Study Group Network. Find out more about Jill Wright.

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