There are some ridiculously smart kids out there. Perhaps it’s just thanks to internet publicity, but it seems like child prodigies are becoming more frequent these days, and they keep raising the bar with their mind-blowing accomplishments.
Yet another bright young mind, 11-year-old Tara Sharifi, from the United Kingdom, has popped up in the news recently. The Iranian native now living in Buckinghamshire has stunned her parents and the scientific establishment after the results of her recent IQ test were revealed.
It turns out young Sharifi scored 162 points, well above the “genius benchmark” of 140 points, achieving the highest possible number on the Mensa IQ test. Even more incredibly, her IQ score exceeded those of famed theoretical physicists the late Stephen Hawking and Albert Einstein.
The 11-year-old student attending Aylesbury High School made a joint decision with her parents to take the IQ test. The Mensa exam scores the participant based on their ability to understand the meanings of specific words and answer within a set timeframe.
“I was shocked when I got the result,” she told The Bucks Herald. “I never expected to get such a good score.” Her friends at school were impressed too when they heard about the results.
Meanwhile, her dad, Hossein Sharifi, was also taken by surprise by the outcome, not to mention all of the media attention they have received.
“I am extremely proud but very surprised at how well Tara scored,” he said.
“I knew she was very clever, but I did not think she would have such a high IQ.”
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Large Hadron Collider at CERNPhoto credit: CERN/Laurent Egli 2012
Hossein recounted times when their family would watch a TV quiz show and Tara would be able to answer math questions before the contestants were able to.
Besides her recent fame, Sharifi also qualifies to join the High IQ Society as an elite member. It makes no difference that she is just 11; there are, as of yet, no age restrictions in the organization.
“It will be a wonderful opportunity to meet other people within the Mensa system,” she says. She looks forward to meeting US writer Joyce Carol Oates and actress Geena Davis, as well as others.
Looking further ahead, Sharifi would like to pick a career in a math-related field one day.
Some speculate that the budding young mind might follow in the footsteps of another groundbreaking Iranian mathematician by the name of Maryam Mirzakhani. Also a young prodigy, Mirzakhani excelled in her youth, later became a Stanford University professor, and won the prestigious Fields Medal for her pioneering research in mathematics.
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