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Degrees of Mental Retardation

Degrees of Mental Retardation (MR)

Not all people with mental retardation have the same level of intelligence. The scientific method of measuring intelligence is through standardized psychological tests called IQ tests. IQ or intelligence quotient is the percentage of intelligence a person has, in comparison to a normal person from a similar background. An IQ of 100 is considered normal intelligence. The lesser the IQ, the more severe is the level of mental retardation. Based on IQ, mental retardation can be classified into different degrees as follows:

  • IQ Category85-100.

  • Normal70-85.

  • Normal but not retarded50-70.

  • Mild mental retardation35-50.

  • Moderate20-35.

  • Severe Below 20 Profound.

    A more practical and simpler way of classifying mental retardation is to think of only two categories: mild mental retardation with an IQ range of 50-70, and severe mental retardation with an IQ below 35. Though the concept of IQ is useful in some ways, it does not always give the true picture of the abilities of the person. A related and more appropriate measure is the social quotient (SQ), in which importance is given to the acquisition of socially relevant skills.

 

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