Introducing the Basics

History and Pioneers

Who was Francis Galton?

Francis Galton (1822–1911) was never formally trained as a psychologist but, an extremely innovative and creative man, he made enormous and long-lasting contributions to the methods of psychological research. In mid-life, after a wide range of endeavors, which included explorations in Africa and new discoveries in meteorology, he became preoccupied with the question of the heritability of intelligence. Is intelligence passed on in families, much like height or hair color? That his own family tree was filled with gifted intellectuals is probably relevant to his choice of study. He was a child prodigy and was the grandson of Erasmus Darwin (a noted physician and botanist) and a first cousin of Charles Darwin.


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