Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 72.djvu/286

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

experience. Soon this becomes common, and the animal may then properly be said to learn, though there is no evidence that at this stage utilization of experience is ever conscious. When consciousness once becomes a factor in determining action, capacity to profit by experience is a measure of intelligence, and it is just this increased sensitiveness to experience that gives the facility in adjustment of which we have been speaking. Intelligence restricts the action of natural selection by enlarging the individual's range of adaptation and by giving insight into conditions and the power to create new ones. There is greater latitude for variation without destruction, and variation, again, may suggest other lines of progress by means of which nature's selection may be guided, so that she may find those fittest who are most appreciative of the larger, more universal environment which it is education's privilege to conceive and foster.