People have tried to use test development to eliminate race differences in average IQ scores. The results are disappointing.
An out-of-court settlement in 1984 led to the what psychometricians call the “Golden Rule procedure,” which is to build a test using items that have the smallest between-group race differences in passing rates.
The Golden Rule procedure sounds like a good idea on paper, but its application has not fulfilled expectations.
Evidence consistently shows that the tests and subtests that show the highest average difference between White Americans’ and African Americans’ scores are also the most effective tools for measuring general intelligence. This fact has several important implications, one of which being that average IQ differences across these two groups are not an artifact of test creation. Eliminating those differences is possible, but the result will be a test that is no longer an intelligence test.
If test creators are still eliminating items that show large average sex differences, they are not documenting this information in their technical manuals any more.
Even if sex differences in IQ are minimized in test development process, it does not have the massively detrimental effects on reliability and validity that minimizing race differences in IQ does. An intelligence test is still an intelligence test when sex differences in scores are minimized (though this may hide a difference favoring one sex or the other). The same cannot be said for minimizing race differences in IQ scores. This is strong evidence that the race difference in IQ is driven by a meaningful difference in intelligence and that Murray’s conclusions about the consequences of mean differences in IQ are viable.