The “High IQ” Society

One out of 50 people qualifies for American Mensa… Are You The One?

Some Frequently Asked Questions About Mensa

What qualifies me to be a Mensa Member?

To qualify for Mensa, you must have scored in the top 2% of the general population on a standardized intelligence test.  Five million Americans are eligible for membership.

You can find more information about eligibility at the Prior Evidence page of American Mensa.

What type of people are members of American Mensa?

Mensans come from all walks of life.  They range from three to nearly 100 years old.  They represent both sexes, all races, various professions and many beliefs.  However, they share one trait: high intelligence.

What is the purpose of Mensa?

There are three main purposes of Mensa:

  1. Identify and foster human intelligence for the benefit of humanity.
  2. Encourage research in the nature, characteristics, and uses of intelligence.
  3. Provide a stimulating intellectual and social environment for members.

Is there information for new members?

Please see our Welcome New Members page.

  • Why should I join Mensa?
  • Does Mensa provide intellectual stimulation?
  • Does Mensa provide social interaction?
  • What publications come with Mensa membership?
  • Does Mensa offer any publications to non-members?
  • What other benefits does Mensa offer?
  • Can Mensa help my community?
  • Is there a membership primer?
  • Where can I find a list of benefits and services offered to Mensans?


AMC – (American Mensa Committee) The Board of Directors of American Mensa.  These members are elected by the members of American Mensa.

AML – (American Mensa Ltd.) The corporation which includes all members located in the United States.

AG – (Annual Gathering) The yearly “get together” of all groups.  The 2009 AG will be held in Pittsburgh, PA.

ExComm – (Executive Committee) The governing body of the local group.  The ExCom of Memphis Mensa consists of five members (LocSec, Asst. LocSec, Treasurer and two Members-at-Large.  Members of the ExCom are elected each February by the membership of Memphis Mensa for a term of one year.

FSM – (Fold, Staple & Mutilate) The monthly get-together to assemble the local newsletter.  Beer, soft drinks and pizza are served to the workers and a good time is had by all.

GC Coordinator – (Gifted Children Coordinator) A local member, appointed by the ExCom, to work towards the promotion of programs aimed at gifted children.

LocSec – (Local Secretary) The “President” of the ExCom.  This person is elected by the current ExCom members.

LOTS – (Local Officer Training Seminar) A course offered to officers and those interested in becoming officers of local groups.  LOTS are run by members of the AMC and others having experience in running local groups.

M’s – (Mensans) An abbreviation often used to refer to Mensans.

MERF – (Mensa Education and Research Foundation) MERF sponsors scholarship programs, participates in research projects, rewards excellence in research on giftedness and publishes the Mensa Research Journal.

NomComm – (Nominating Committee) The 3-member committee which nominates the candidates who will run for office on the ExCom.  The NomCom is appointed by the current ExCom.

Proctor – Persons appointed by American Mensa to administer the Mensa test.  Proctors must meet certain qualifications before they can be appointed.

RG – (Regional Gathering) A weekend event sponsored by local groups around the country.  These events are usually held at a hotel in the host city and events include speakers, games, dancing and lots of hospitality.  On any weekend there is probably at least one RG being held somewhere in the country.

RVC – (Regional Vice-Chairman) A voting member of the AML representing members in one of the geographic locations of the country.  (Memphis is located in Region 5).  The RVC serves as a liaison between local groups and the national office, and is an advisor and resource for local groups.

SIG – (Special Interest Group) This is a group of Mensans who share an interest in a certain topic, occupation, etc.  There are both national and local SIGs.

SIGHT – (Service of International Guidance and Hospitality to Travelers) Members who wish to assist other Mensans who are traveling.  The scope of assistance ranges from giving information on local attractions, supplying area maps, etc. to the offer of overnight accommodations to traveling Mensans.

Unless otherwise stated, all definitions are pertaining to local group persons/officers/activities.

Welcome to Memphis Mensa

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