the most brilliant minds in the country go into medicine

asdasd12345

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is this statement true? compared to things like engineering, pharmaceuticals, teachings, religion, investment banking, accounting, strategic consulting, ect? when you talk to other premeds, are you boggled by how smart they are?
 

exmike

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There are brilliant minds in every profession. Perhaps premeds just like to boast more than most. :p
 

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I don't think it's true. I think the smartest people I know are in every field except medicine.
 
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i think the distribution of bright people is pretty even across all professions.

i have met some very brilliant people at interviews, etc. i have also met some some very ignorant/pig headed people in the same settings.

everyone here is part of the former group, for sure. ;)
 

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There's brilliant people everywhere. I've worked at an IT Consulting firm and a pharmaceutical. In the first, my boss successfully hacked into the CIA system at 14. In the second, our President discovered the ras gene! Almost all the people I've worked with have blown my mind.... brilliance is abound.
 

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bruinrab said:
I don't think it's true. I think the smartest people I know are in every field except medicine.
:laugh:

well i cant argue with you there after meeting some of the people that i did...but in the end what everyone says here is true. there are brilliant minds everywhere and if there weren't we'd be in trouble...
 

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If we were the most brilliant people in the country/world, why would we choose a profession with an uncertain financial outcome, a HUGE educational debt, the choice to give up our social lives for our 20's, 30's, etc while in school, the list goes on.
Masochists I say!
Besides, everyone knows the real geniuses of the world are too busy watching NASCAR to entertain the idea of going into medicine.
 

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For what it's worth, after taking physics, I'm going to say the smartest people in the world are physicists. :)
 

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aspirant said:
For what it's worth, after taking physics, I'm going to say the smartest people in the world are physicists. :)
:thumbup: theoretical physics, pure math, and philosophy :thumbup:
 

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Physicists and engineers really impress me with their smarts far more than most of the MDs I know.
 

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Engineers are a smart group of people. Engineers who are also pre-med are the smartest people you will ever meet.

(You can probably guess what my major is :D )
 
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I think physicists are the smartest, and the world has always upheld them as such. Think of who we consider to be the smartest people ever to live: Isaac Newton, Einstein, Copernicus, Galileo, stephen Hawkings........they're all physicists.

Something else to consider is that I think people in a certain field usually view other fields as being harder and therefore people doing it must be smarter. For example, most of us here would consider calculations in Physical Chemistry to be extremely hard. P-Chem is hard to us, so anyone that can do it is therefore smarter in our minds. A business major views pre-meds to be super smart because they aren't as good at general chemistry, organic chemistry, and cell biology. because they aren't good at it, in their minds anyone who is good at that stuff is super smart.
 

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asdasd12345 said:
the most brilliant minds in the country go into medicine?
I think that you could more accurately say that the most brillant medical minds go to SDN! :D
 

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Clearly there are smart people in every profession. As a math/physics major, however, I have to say that these subjects require very creative and logical thinkings. You don't have to memorize much of the stuffs but you need to know how to solve the problems by using the concepts you've learned. Medicine tends to require more of good memorization skills. I've seen many premeds struggling with physics/p-chem/math, but doing very well in other classes(like bio). It just depends on what kind of people each profession needs. You don't have to be good at math to go to the med school. Of course, I'm not saying premeds are bad at math... :D
 

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There many highly motivated people in medicine, but that is very different from brilliance. Most of the truly brilliant people in science end up in in research in one of the hard sciences. Clinical medicine usually ends up boring these types of people. I would say that the average med student is below the average physics/engineering Phd in intelligence.
 

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Hallm_7 said:
I think physicists are the smartest, and the world has always upheld them as such. Think of who we consider to be the smartest people ever to live: Isaac Newton, Einstein, Copernicus, Galileo, stephen Hawkings........they're all physicists.
Perhaps true, but how about researchers who discovered some of the keys to health? Salk, Watson and Crick, Alexander Flemming, Huxley and Hodgkin. Heck, if it weren't for Muller we'd be walking through X-ray streams all day and wouldn't even think twice.

I know obviously this list is much less "famous" heavy than yours above, but who's to say who's more important or smarter? more famous doesn't make you smarter(think O.J. Simpson as a prime example :D ). They're all important and they're all super-smart people.
 

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Do we even agree on what constitutes "intelligence?" My own criteria for intelligence is creativity. That is, someone who is truly intelligent can make things -- inventions, ideas, writing, music, or whatever, by taking principles in their field and applying them in novel ways. If you've spent your whole life studying music, and you are able to compose masterpieces, does that make you less intelligent than a physicist who can develop new ideas? The two are incomparable.
 

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I read some article years ago about how many "geniuses" (IQ 160+) had unassuming jobs like cab driver, office clerk, etc. The reason was that this gave them time to ponder complex ideas at work. I have no idea if this is true but if it is, most physicians would qualify as the profession with the dumbest people around since we don't have any time to ponder anything beyond our work.
 

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Get over yourselves people. Just b/c you are a doc doesn't mean you are a genius. The average IQ for most people in medicine is 120-130. Things like academic mathematicians and physicists...try 150-160.

Chill people. Chill.

NF
 

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normalforce said:
Get over yourselves people. Just b/c you are a doc doesn't mean you are a genius. The average IQ for most people in medicine is 120-130. Things like academic mathematicians and physicists...try 150-160.

Chill people. Chill.

NF
Right, and 83% of all statistics are made up. I would love to see some evidence for this one, and if you can't find any, I'd love to see an explanation on how one could possibly figure this one out.
 

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i'm pretty sure that med school is the hardest post undergrad uni thing to get into and that's why it seems like pre-meds are the smartest but i'm sure there are other smarties in other fields. but i'd say it's safe to say on AVERAGE, pre meds are "smarter"
 
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normalforce said:
Get over yourselves people. Just b/c you are a doc doesn't mean you are a genius. The average IQ for most people in medicine is 120-130. Things like academic mathematicians and physicists...try 150-160.
Not sure this is a fair comparison. You are comparing academic physicists to ALL doctors. How about comparing ACADEMIC/researching physicians to their academic colleagues in math or physics? I am sure this way the intellectual "gap" that you cite is less obvious than you may think.
 

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Zweihander said:
Do we even agree on what constitutes "intelligence?" My own criteria for intelligence is creativity. That is, someone who is truly intelligent can make things -- inventions, ideas, writing, music, or whatever, by taking principles in their field and applying them in novel ways. If you've spent your whole life studying music, and you are able to compose masterpieces, does that make you less intelligent than a physicist who can develop new ideas? The two are incomparable.
Dude, I was going to post something in the exact same vein, but you beat me to it.

I have known some very intelligent people in undergrad, two of whom are currently completing their Rhodes scholarships as we speak. One of them is deferring med school, while the other is studying philosophy. Another Rhodes from my undergrad is now studying physics there. Is any one of them more intelligent than the other simply because of what they study? No I don't think so. I think many people has an inherent fear of mathematics so that major achievements in physics and math are viewed with awe; at the same time, we tend to overlook monumental works in art/music/philosophy/(insert other humanities) that may have demanded just as much intellect and creativity on the part of their creators, simply because they might be less "feared" and more "accessible" to us.

Now I am not saying that there are no smart mathematicians or physicists. It's just that I believe (like many already stated) there are intelligent people in practically every profession out there.
 

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asdasd12345 said:
is this statement true? compared to things like engineering, pharmaceuticals, teachings, religion, investment banking, accounting, strategic consulting, ect? when you talk to other premeds, are you boggled by how smart they are?
HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA (breath) HAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHA.

Sorry, the smart people I know would be smart if they were premed for it they were janitors. Man, no wonder premeds are hated so much. We think we're the shiz when we're really not.

Another fallacy is that premeds are somehow more altruistic than the general public. Please, I think premeds insult a lot of other very noble professions with misguided sentiments such as these.
 

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I think people tend to gravitate to things they both like and are good at. I wouldn't want most mathmaticians I know as my doctor nor most M.D.'s designing bridges for me (although I did run into the problem last where where my refridgerator broke, and I know how to design and build one but not fix one). As for IQ.....I think academia in general is pretty high.

As a focus of student (all math majors vs all med students vs all chem majors etc.), maybe doctors are up there, but the only reason you would say that is to pat yourself on the back.

And no, pre-meds are no where to be mentioned. Being pre-anything takes away any credibility you might have.

How is it that this thread comes up every year?
 

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normalforce said:
Get over yourselves people. Just b/c you are a doc doesn't mean you are a genius. The average IQ for most people in medicine is 120-130. Things like academic mathematicians and physicists...try 150-160.

Chill people. Chill.

NF
yeah that was what i was going to say...

"get over yourself".
 

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notice how i threw religion in there? this whole thread was a joke, i was just wondering what people would say.
 

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i don't think pre-meds are smarter than other people, but i think we're more well-rounded. we have to be smart enough to understand some of the difficult stuff we have to learn, we have to be super dedicated cause they expect us to do a million things to get an interview for med school, and we have to have good people skills so we do well in interviews and so that we can interact with our patients. just my opinion, but i feel like getting into med school takes a very well rounded person... numbers alone won't cut it, hard work alone won't cut it, and personality alone won't cut it.
 

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LauraMac said:
i don't think pre-meds are smarter than other people, but i think we're more well-rounded. we have to be smart enough to understand some of the difficult stuff we have to learn, we have to be super dedicated cause they expect us to do a million things to get an interview for med school, and we have to have good people skills so we do well in interviews and so that we can interact with our patients. just my opinion, but i feel like getting into med school takes a very well rounded person... numbers alone won't cut it, hard work alone won't cut it, and personality alone won't cut it.
Yet somehow a good proportion of premeds and med students lack genuine compassion, the ability to work well in a group, or some semblance of social skills. Personally, I think they should administer sodium pentothal to every medical student before the interview. Then again, that is probably why they will keep me far away from the barbituates if I end up being a med school interviewer. ;)
 
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LauraMac said:
i don't think pre-meds are smarter than other people, but i think we're more well-rounded. we have to be smart enough to understand some of the difficult stuff we have to learn, we have to be super dedicated cause they expect us to do a million things to get an interview for med school, and we have to have good people skills so we do well in interviews and so that we can interact with our patients. just my opinion, but i feel like getting into med school takes a very well rounded person... numbers alone won't cut it, hard work alone won't cut it, and personality alone won't cut it.
Actually i think if you took a random group of undergrads, premeds would be less well rounded on the whole. Premeds are much more focused on studies than other groups, tend not to do as many extracurriculars unless it helps their CV *in general*. I am not saying that this is a bad thing, but making the claim that we are somehow more well rounded than others has no basis as far as I can tell. I generally tried to stay away from the premed crowd when I was in college. Basically everybody was similar- very competitive and focused.

Applicants with poor people skills can do very well in interview settings, just wait till you get to med school and you will see what I mean. And yes numbers alone will cut it at many places. If you have a 4.0/43 I would bet that you are getting in somewhere even if you have zero personality.
 

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Right, and 83% of all statistics are made up. I would love to see some evidence for this one, and if you can't find any, I'd love to see an explanation on how one could possibly figure this one out.
Well if you do a simple web search there are plenty of lists like these

http://iq-test.learninginfo.org/iq04.htm

In their book, Know Your Child?s IQ, Glen Wilson and Diana Grylls outline occupations typical of various IQ levels:


140 Top Civil Servants; Professors and Research Scientists.
130 Physicians and Surgeons; Lawyers; Engineers (Civil and Mechanical)
120 School Teachers; Pharmacists; Accountants; Nurses; Stenographers; Managers.
110 Foremen; Clerks; Telephone Operators; Salesmen; Policemen; Electricians.
100+ Machine Operators; Shopkeepers; Butchers; Welders; Sheet Metal Workers.
100- Warehousemen; Carpenters; Cooks and Bakers; Small Farmers; Truck and Van Drivers.
90 Laborers; Gardeners; Upholsterers; Farmhands; Miners; Factory Packers and Sorters


All the lists are similar. have I checked their references -NO, but I really don't care either :cool:
 

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BigBopper said:
Well if you do a simple web search there are plenty of lists like these

http://iq-test.learninginfo.org/iq04.htm

In their book, Know Your Child?s IQ, Glen Wilson and Diana Grylls outline occupations typical of various IQ levels:


140 Top Civil Servants; Professors and Research Scientists.
130 Physicians and Surgeons; Lawyers; Engineers (Civil and Mechanical)
120 School Teachers; Pharmacists; Accountants; Nurses; Stenographers; Managers.
110 Foremen; Clerks; Telephone Operators; Salesmen; Policemen; Electricians.
100+ Machine Operators; Shopkeepers; Butchers; Welders; Sheet Metal Workers.
100- Warehousemen; Carpenters; Cooks and Bakers; Small Farmers; Truck and Van Drivers.
90 Laborers; Gardeners; Upholsterers; Farmhands; Miners; Factory Packers and Sorters


All the lists are similar. have I checked their references -NO, but I really don't care either :cool:
Does George W. Bush count as a top civil servant? If he does, maybe they should update their book. :laugh:
 

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I think its pretty ridiculous to claim that pre-meds are brilliant. You need to realize that some kid majoring in raquetball with a 1.5 gpa can claim he's pre-med at a party to try to impress some girls, does that make him brilliant? This is why I have no respect for anyone who claims they are pre-med, it dosen't mean sh**. I would however say that anyone who gets into and graduates from med school is extremely intelligent. Sorry about ranting but I'm sick of going to my bio classes that pale in comparison to my engineering classes and hearing a bunch of "pre-meds" put on a spectacle of how smart they are. Fact is until they get into med school their degree is no different than that of an 8th grade biology teacher.
 

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cwb said:
I think its pretty ridiculous to claim that pre-meds are brilliant. You need to realize that some kid majoring in raquetball with a 1.5 gpa can claim he's pre-med at a party to try to impress some girls, does that make him brilliant? This is why I have no respect for anyone who claims they are pre-med, it dosen't mean sh**. I would however say that anyone who gets into and graduates from med school is extremely intelligent. Sorry about ranting but I'm sick of going to my bio classes that pale in comparison to my engineering classes and hearing a bunch of "pre-meds" put on a spectacle of how smart they are. Fact is until they get into med school their degree is no different than that of an 8th grade biology teacher.
Well, I think the poster was commenting on the people who actually do get into medicine. I agree with you completely. Pre-meds really aren't the "brightest minds" in the country, but there is something to be said for someone who can get into a medical school. Now, even still, I don't think that ALL of the brightest minds go into medicine, in fact there may be very few of them. But you have to admit that it takes someone with a special capacity for intelligence to be a neurosurgeon, to be a radiologist, what have you.

I also agree that "brilliant" may be a little too vague. Do you mean brilliance as far as IQ? I know some brilliant business entrepreneurs who may not be the next Einstein. I know some brilliant musicians who also may not have a strong mental capacity. Students in medical school are a talented bunch. There's no question. But there are some brilliant minds in plenty of other fields out there.
 

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Infinity says that with enough things to be good at, everyone is best at something. IQ is a great pop-culture statistic with no real implications (sorry Drs. Weschler, Binet). You can learn something from everyone.
 

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bruinrab said:
I don't think it's true. I think the smartest people I know are in every field except medicine.
that is too funny...... :laugh:
 

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BigBopper said:
Well if you do a simple web search there are plenty of lists like these

http://iq-test.learninginfo.org/iq04.htm

In their book, Know Your Child?s IQ, Glen Wilson and Diana Grylls outline occupations typical of various IQ levels:


140 Top Civil Servants; Professors and Research Scientists.
130 Physicians and Surgeons; Lawyers; Engineers (Civil and Mechanical)
120 School Teachers; Pharmacists; Accountants; Nurses; Stenographers; Managers.
110 Foremen; Clerks; Telephone Operators; Salesmen; Policemen; Electricians.
100+ Machine Operators; Shopkeepers; Butchers; Welders; Sheet Metal Workers.
100- Warehousemen; Carpenters; Cooks and Bakers; Small Farmers; Truck and Van Drivers.
90 Laborers; Gardeners; Upholsterers; Farmhands; Miners; Factory Packers and Sorters


All the lists are similar. have I checked their references -NO, but I really don't care either :cool:
well, since i'm not sure how they're measuring intelligence, i can't really take what they say at face value....i mean, police officers may seem dumb to the general public, but they're very smart people...if they want to stay alive on the streets that is.....and people are always equating math skills to intelligence, but i know people who are amazing artists, who have to be both creative AND problem solvers to create what they see in their minds....which i am in awe of.....and i think they are extremely intelligent for being able to do what a very small percentage of people do....so really, intelligence comes down to how many people can do what you do? if a lot can, then people won't rate you very high on the intelligence scale....if few can, then you're smart.....but most of what i've seen in this thread is people comparing everthing to math and physics or engineering to measure intelligence...which is just ridiculous.....what about writers who write amazing books that are almost real? i can't do that....almost every engineer i know can't do that...i think that's an incredible accomplishment....and takes some smarts too....from what i've seen, those that go into medicine are on average just as intelligent as anyone in any other profession.....being premed just means you work harder with your mind than a janitor....not that you're more intelligent....don't confuse the two... and i guess that's my two cents...... :D
 

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I don't subscribe to your theory. I think there are brilliant minds in every field. Just look at the field of Law, perhaps the most intense professional school out there. Brilliant supreme court justices which make landmark decisions. Brilliance is everywere.
 

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If politicians are supposed to be the most brilliant people with the highest IQs >140, then they really need to develop a new IQ methodology.
 

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Hallm_7 said:
I think physicists are the smartest, and the world has always upheld them as such. Think of who we consider to be the smartest people ever to live: Isaac Newton, Einstein, Copernicus, Galileo, stephen Hawkings........they're all physicists.
This reasoning is WAY flawed. The reason that the physicists are so well-honored is because physics in general is the simplest and most obvious of the sciences. No doubt, Newton and Einstein are certifiable world-class geniuses that have equals but no superiors. But Gailieo wasn't nearly so much brilliant as he was politicaly important in clowning the Pope in regards to advocating the heliocentric model of the solar system. Copernicus' primary contribution was to take a model that had LESS predictive accuracy than the prevailing paradigm which he basically took from Muslim scholars, and then published his theory essentially on his deathbed to avoid recourse--bold, important, and progressinve, but not an act of genius in the traditional sense. Hawking basically gets mad clout for holding the same title at Cambridge that Newton once held, but only .001% of the people who know his name can actually tell you what his contributions are--for the most part people are just fascinated by the idea of a genius with an almost completely crippled PNS. I'd personally place Kepler and Maxwell above any of those last three on your list.

I would say that Darwin, Mendel, Crick & Watson, and Linus Pauling have genius contributions that deserve at least as much credit, and the major separations between Newton and Einstein and these hombres is that Newton and Einstein had very, very broad and numerous contributions to many aspects of science. But Gauss is probably on par with Einstein in terms of his genius, though only mathmaticians are likely to know about it, because Gauss didn't make direct contributions to the creation of the atomic bomb in an age of global media coverage like Einstein did.

And Darwin and Pasteur made contributions to the world of science with far more impact than even Einstein. Ever since Newton, people like to affiliate genius with physics, but that's because the public at large is more unaware of the contributions from other fields. Most people even with Darwin "fish" on the backs of their cars probably don't have a rigorous understanding of the mechanisms which make evolution possible--generally they are more defined by their contempt for the Religious Right. And the Religious Right can give Newton his credit even while they actively seek to discredit Darwin. My sister recently went to Europe with some chicas who were appalled by the presence of Darwin's tomb in a church at Westminster Abbey--yet his contributions to biology are easily on par with Newton's contributions to physics.
 

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Well **** if medicine is only filled with brilliant minds that leaves me out. I think I am pretty average intellegence but I have a strong drive towards medicine that makes me do well in school, but I certainly do NOT consider myself brilliant (I suck at Chemistry for one thing....lol).

Actually I don't think there are too many truly brilliant people, the word is overused.

MamaMD
 

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verbalassasin said:
I don't subscribe to your theory. I think there are brilliant minds in every field. Just look at the field of Law, perhaps the most intense professional school out there. Brilliant supreme court justices which make landmark decisions. Brilliance is everywere.
A little off topic, but not all supreme court justices are brilliant. Justice Scalia argued just last week that he has a "1st amendment right" to prohibit his speeches from being videotaped. It's interesting to note that the 1st amendment allows you to say anything you want basically, but it does not give you some sort of protection against that being recorded in any form. Alas. Just had to rant.

I do agree that there are brilliant people in so many different fields. I also strongly agree with nutmeg about brilliance and "perceived brilliance". Many of us don't understand physics so we tend to put those who do understand it way above the "rest of us" in terms of intelligence.
 

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MechE said:
Engineers are a smart group of people. Engineers who are also pre-med are the smartest people you will ever meet.

(You can probably guess what my major is :D )
I actually agree about engineers. do you really think that pre-meds have more intrinsic intelligence than other areas of knowledge? I don't think so... in fact, pre-meds are notorious for working their butts off to compensate. hard-working, yes. not necessarily the MOST naturally intelligent of ALL fields. that's crazy!
 
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