Alfred Binet

By: Taylor Morgan

Facts about Alfred:

  • He was born on July 8, 1857 and passed away on October 18, 1911
  • Received his law degree in 1878

  • Subsequently studied natural sciences at the Sorbonne
  • Self-taught in psychology
  • Researcher, neurological clinic, Salpêtrière Hospital, Paris (1883-1889)
  • Researcher and Associate Director, Laboratory of Experimental Psychology, Sorbonne University (1891-1894)
  • Director, Laboratory of Experimental Psychology, Sorbonne University (1894-1911)
  • Member, Commission on the Education of Retarded Children, appointed by the French Ministry of Public Instruction (1904)
  • His major contribution was the The Binet-Simon Scale
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Facts Continued:

  • He worked with Henry Heaunis and Theodore Simon to lay down the psychology journal “L’Année psychologique”.
  • The “L’Année psychologique" covered if the test should be given to children thought to possibly have learning disabilities, that might place them in a special classroom.
  • In 1905, this vision of identifying at-risk students became reality as Binet developed the first intelligence test comprised of 30 different types of questions relating to everyday life.
  • He was inspired by the works of Theodule Ribot and John Stuart Mill, and that boosted his enthusiasm for sensory and associationistic psychology.

  • Binet Published the third version of the Binet-Simon scale right before he died in 1911.


High School: Lycée Louis-le-Grand, Paris, France
University: PhD Natural Science, Sorbonne (1892)
Teacher: Psychology, Sorbonne (1891-1911)
Administrator: Director of Psychology Clinic, Sorbonne (1895-1911)

French Ancestry

Author of books:
La Psychologie du Raisonnement (The Psychology of Reasoning) (1886)
Le Magnétisme Animal (Animal Magnetism) (1887, with Charles Féré)
On Double Consciousness (1889)
Les Altérations de la Personnalité (The Alterations of the Personality) (1892)
L'Étude Expérimentale de I'intelligence (The Experimental Study of Intelligence) (1903)
Les Enfants Anormaux (Abnormal Children) (1907)
Less Idées Modernes sur les Enfants (Modern Ideas on Children) (1911)