Thursday, December 19, 2019


Indian girl in Britain gets highest possible IQ score in Mensa test

Indians outside India often do remarkably well in many ways.  A brown skin does not seem to hinder them.

A primary schoolgirl has achieved the highest possible score in a Mensa IQ test - beating Albert Einstein and the late Stephen Hawking.

Freya Mangotra, of Moseley, Birmingham, sat the test the when she was 10 and a half in October - the youngest allowed. Einstein is believed he have had an IQ of 160, the same as the late Hawking.

Proud dad Kuldeep Kumar said Freya's result of 162 in the Cattell III B test - which examines verbal reasoning - means his only child is officially 'a genius' according to officials at Mensa.  'They said it's the highest you can get under the age of 18,' said Dr Kumar, a psychiatrist.

'I don't want to put too much pressure on her but we knew from an early age, two or three, that she was gifted. 'She grasps things very fast. She can concentrate very quickly and remember things - she only needs to read or do something once to remember. We are blessed.'

Her proud dad says she is also a voracious reader just like he and his wife, Dr Gulshan Tajuriahe, who is currently studying for a PhD in child development.

The family is often to be found with their heads buried in books at home with the TV on in the background.

SOURCE 

Friday, November 22, 2019



Children who start school later gain advantage, new study shows (?)

The paper underlying this report does not yet appear to be online but the Centre seems very Leftist so the research is unlikely to be very rigorous.

Even the report below does however reveal a lack of rigour.  It is apparently based on the nonsensical "all men are equal" dogma.  No attempt is made to take account of student IQ. High IQ students have often been shown to thrive when enrolled early and the usual squawk about their social fitness has been shown to be a snark.  Smart kids are in general better socially as well as academically

So the study tells us nothing certain.  There were presumably a number of low IQ students in the sample who would benefit from a late start.  So the finding of an overall benefit from a late start could be entirely a product of the low IQ element in the sample.  How students of around average IQ fare is simply not addressed



Children who are held back and start school later than their peers gain an advantage that is still felt up to six decades later, a new study shows.

They are more self-confident, resilient, competitive and trusting, which tends to be associated with economic success.

The analysis of 1007 adults aged between 24 and 60 illustrates the “potential adverse effect of school entry rules," lead author Lionel Page from the University of Technology, Sydney said.

“Our findings indicate that school entry rules influence the formation of behavioural traits, creating long-lasting disparities between individuals born on different sides of the cut-off date," he said.

School starting ages vary between Australian states. In Victoria, children starting school must turn five by April 30 in the year they start school, whereas in Queensland and Western Australia the cut-off is June 30. In South Australia,, they must be five by May 1 and in Tasmania they must be five by January 1.

Dr Page said the study’s findings suggested the relative age at school had an impact on people’s success in adulthood.

“We find that participants who were relatively old in school exhibit higher self-confidence about their performance at an effort task compared to those who were relatively young," he said.

“Moreover, they declare being more tolerant to risk in a range of real-life situations and trusting of other people in social interactions.

“Taken together, this set of results offers important insights on the long-term effects of relative age at school on behavioural traits."

The new study was published by the Life Course Centre, a joint research project between the federal government and the University of Queensland, the University of Sydney, the University of Melbourne and the University of Western Australia.

It involved adults from Queensland, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia.

The findings come as a UNSW study found a quarter of students are held back so they start school when turning six, not when they turn five.

SOURCE  

Thursday, October 24, 2019



Social class in speech

The article below tells us that we all speak in a way that tends to indicate our background.  In particular, whether we are upper class, lower class or in between is detectible from our speech.

The study is an American one but I doubt that many Britons will be surprised by it.  In Britain, an "Oxford" or "RP" accent is the mark of the upper class person and below that there are various regional accents of varied significance -- with Cockney (a London working class accent) being the lowest of the low. Regional accents are also well known in the USA of course.

And in both the USA and the UK, your accent has a major impact on your life chances.  The best and most lucrative jobs will normally be occupied by people with prestigious accents.  And for anyone with a humble background to break into that is virtually impossible.  It would simply "grate" on upper class people to associate daily with (say) a cockney accent.  There is a loophole, however.  You can change your accent to a more prestigious one.  Many do.

So what is new about the article below? We surely knew all along that our speech gives away a lot about us. The  relative novelty was the finding that class can be detected in your writing style as well.  And that, I think, is very interesting indeed.  Because I think that it is probably complexity that is being detected.  The lower class person can be expected to use fewer words, mostly common words and simpler sentence structure.  That should be easily detected but I cannot see what else would be.

But verbal ability is strongly correlated with IQ.  The more words you know, the smarter you generally are.  I like the word "inchoate" as a test of that.  Do you know what that means?  If you do, take a bow.

So we come back to the now well-supported generalization that social class is largely an IQ gradient. See e.g. here and here. The top people are smarter.  The recruiter who assesses a job applicant by his speech is not being arbitrary.  He is seeking more intelligent employees, which will be generally advantageous.  He is doing a good job of personnel selection.

That is a very different interpretation of the results below.  Intelligence is strongly inherited and Leftists hate that.  They hate a lot of things.  And the traditional Marxist way of coping with that is to use the word "reproduced"' -- which you will see in the heading below.

To account for the fact that some arrangement is persistent from generation to generation, Marxists don't regard that as natural in any way.  They say that the arrangement has to be "reproduced". And they go about earnestly looking for HOW it is reproduced.  They look for things that people do which  cause the same thing to emerge in a second and third generation.  And it is always due to the machinations of evil men, of course.  The idea that a smart person mostly has smart kids willy nilly is rejected by the Marxist.  He thinks that the smart man gets smart kids by sending them to private schools etc.  So if you abolish the private schools, all men will be equal.

So in the article below the authors don't regard the class-detection of the recruiter as being reasonable and natural but rather see it as an unjust strategy of devious complexity that unfairly disadvantages lower class people.  Therefore the recruiter must "unlearn" his wrong procedures and abandon his biases.

So there are two very different lessons that can be learned from the findings below.  I think that nothing needs to be done, whereas the Leftist thinks the whole thing is wrong, wrong, wrong and is in urgent need of reform.



Evidence for the reproduction of social class in brief speech

Michael W. Kraus et al.

Abstract

Economic inequality is at its highest point on record and is linked to poorer health and well-being across countries. The forces that perpetuate inequality continue to be studied, and here we examine how a person’s position within the economic hierarchy, their social class, is accurately perceived and reproduced by mundane patterns embedded in brief speech. Studies 1 through 4 examined the extent that people accurately perceive social class based on brief speech patterns. We find that brief speech spoken out of context is sufficient to allow respondents to discern the social class of speakers at levels above chance accuracy, that adherence to both digital and subjective standards for English is associated with higher perceived and actual social class of speakers, and that pronunciation cues in speech communicate social class over and above speech content. In study 5, we find that people with prior hiring experience use speech patterns in preinterview conversations to judge the fit, competence, starting salary, and signing bonus of prospective job candidates in ways that bias the process in favor of applicants of higher social class. Overall, this research provides evidence for the stratification of common speech and its role in both shaping perceiver judgments and perpetuating inequality during the briefest interactions.

SOURCE 

Wednesday, October 2, 2019




Marriage and the So-Called Gender Pay Gap

This has become something of an old chestnut.  But it is rubbish.  Because of the larger standard deviation of IQ in males, there are far more men than women in the upper ranges of IQ -- and IQ is a strong determinant of income.  So high income, high IQ women in fact have an objective surplus of compatible men to choose from.

So why the beef?  It's just the latest excuse for an old, old problem: Women in their 30s and 40 asking "Where are all the men?"  So where are they?

Women with good juices grab a desirable man in their teens and 20s, while there are plenty of men in their age-range still single.  So fussy women who fail to do that grab in their 20s find that all the desirable men are married.  They are left with other women's rejects.  IQ is not the problem. The lack of a strong sexual motivation is.

A strongly motivated woman will make allowances for the inevitable male inadequacies while the less motivated ones are more fussy and wait for perfection. But perfection seldom comes so all too often that fussiness will lead to a lonely old age.



Highly educated professional women are finding fewer well-suited men available to marry.

In this era of “equity equals justice” radicalism where the gender pay gap is regularly trotted out by leftists as an example of social injustice, a recent study provides an interesting twist. According to a study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family, the number of women in higher income brackets is increasing … and these women are running into a shortage of marital partners. In other words, these unmarried women are having trouble find men to marry who match or exceed their own income level.

The study concludes that there are “large deficits in the supply of potential male spouses,” and that “one implication is that the unmarried may remain unmarried or marry less well-suited partners.” The study’s lead author, Daniel T. Lichter, notes that while women do indeed seek to marry for love, “it also is fundamentally an economic transaction.”

Fox Business observes, “It seems many men aren’t getting up to the income level that women prefer in a potential marriage partner.” Evidently, no matter what the social justice warriors may claim, there is an innate expectation in the minds women that values men as husbands who will be the primary bread winner. Who knew that gender roles were so ingrained?

SOURCE 


Thursday, September 26, 2019




Early experience, not genes, shapes child abusers (?)

So it is claimed below. It may be true that most child abusers were themselves abused in childhhod but it does not follow that abuse always makes one an abuser.  Rather to the contrary from some examples I have seen: People are often determined that their kids will have a better deal than they had. So precluding a genetic influence on child abusers is dumb and does, I believe, miss the big story:  Child abusers tend to be low IQ people, low IQ males in particular. So it would seem that child abusers will always be with us.  Eugenics no longer has a constituency.

Stories of children killed or disabled by those responsible for them always grieve me greatly but the one consolation I have is that the murdered kid would probably have turned out pretty dumb too -- though that is not at all certain.

I don't know if this study below by Darius Maestipieri, a primate expert at the University of Chicago, is really worth commenting on. It purports to show that child abusers get that way not by genetic inheritance (e.g. by being born stupid, uncontrolled or aggressive) but by being abused themselves as children. The research concerned, however, was based on a small group of Macaque monkeys and I cannot see how the results can be statistically significant, let alone meaningful in any other way.

And this finding would seem to contradict their conclusion anyway: "almost half of those raised by abusive mothers did not become abusers themselves." That seems to indicate genes at work to me. And I won't ask questions about measures taken to preclude observer bias. No good beating a dead horse



Child abuse may be more of a learnt behaviour than a genetic trait, new research on monkeys suggests. If true, the understanding may provide the opportunity to break the cycle of abuse that runs in some families.

As many as 70% of parents who abuse their children were themselves abused while growing up. Maternal abuse of offspring in macaque monkeys shares some similarities with child maltreatment in humans, including its transmission across generations. This pattern of abuse has led to speculation that it may have a genetic basis.

Darius Maestipieri, a primate expert at the University of Chicago, US, tested the theory by observing a population of macaques across two generations. He took some of the newborn female infants from the group and cross-fostered them among the mothers, about half of which were abusers.

In the next generation, he found that 9 of the 16 females who were abused in infancy by their biological or foster mothers turned out to be abusive towards their own offspring.

But none of the 15 females raised by their non-abusive biological or foster mothers maltreated their offspring, including those whose biological mothers were abusers. This indicates that intergenerational transmission of abuse is not genetically caused.

Protective personality

“This study into primate patterns of abuse can be directly related to human abuse,” argues Maestipieri. “What it shows is that the effect of experiencing abuse first-hand or through experiencing siblings being abused is very significant in determining whether somebody will become an abuser.

“But it’s also interesting to note that almost half of those raised by abusive mothers did not become abusers themselves,” he told New Scientist. “We should try to discover what it is about these infants’ personalities or socially supportive environment that protected them from abusive effects.”

Chris Cloke, head of child protection awareness at the UK’s National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, is wary of applying animal studies directly to humans. But he adds: “We know the damaging consequences of child abuse can last into adulthood and affect the way children are brought up. Experiences of abuse in infancy can be particularly important as the brain develops fast in the first year of life.

He also notes: “With the right sort of help people with abusive childhoods can often grow up to be loving parents.”

Maestipieri believes that while some abuse is learnt through direct or indirect experience, physiological changes incurred during abuse may predispose behaviour patterns. “There is evidence that early trauma causes people to become more susceptible to stress, and less able to cope with emotionally challenging situations, so that they could react more easily by ‘losing it’,” he says.

Macaques who abuse their offspring do so early on, during the first three months of life. Abuse, which occurs about once an hour, is brief and takes the form of being overly controlling and violent towards the infant. Actions include biting infants or treating them like an inanimate object – dragging the baby around by its leg or tail, tossing it in the air, or stepping on it.

Journal reference: Proceedings of the National Academies of Science (DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0504122102)

SOURCE  






Sunday, June 2, 2019


Wealthy white parents are turning away from selective schools because they fear their children will be an ethnic minority

This is mainly a NSW concern as only NSW has much in the way of government funded selective schools.  It is also about Chinese students -- who star in selective schools -- which can be demoralizing for all but the very smartest white kids. In some years ALL the top students are Chinese, many from selective schools.  Their combination of hard work and high IQ is unbeatable.  Their talent makes it easier for them to get into selective schools in the first place.  So they get a high quality education for free.  Why would they go elsewhere?  White parents are more aware of the important social advantages of private schools


Wealthy white parents are avoiding sending their kids to selective schools because they fear they will be an ethnic minority, according to an expert. 

Christina Ho, a social scientist from the University of Technology, says Anglo families were choosing to send their kids to private schools while migrant families are choosing selective schools. 'We do have this self-segregation going on,' Dr Ho said.

And part of the reason appears to be based on the fear of being a minority.  'A lot of Anglo families are saying, 'I would be a minority if I went to a selective school,' Dr Ho said.

The same concern impacts the schooling choices of rich migrant families, who previously preferred private schools. As with Anglo families, they were now choosing selective schools because they were worried about being a conspicuous minority in private schools.

'We do have a lot of wealthy migrants in this country who are living in the eastern suburbs and north shore, who could potentially afford to send their kids to private schools but they are not.' said Dr Ho.

In NSW, more than 80 per cent of students in fully selective schools came from language backgrounds other than English (LBOTE).

Of the 99 schools with fewer than 10 percent LBOTE students, over half were private and in affluent areas.

Dr Ho's research indicates that the process of self-segregation is leading to a wider problem across Sydney where many schools are more ethnically divided than the suburbs in which they are located.

'The increasing diversity of our communities is not reflected in our education system,' Dr Ho told msn.com.  

The process of self-segregation worries Dr Ho who argues that when schools no longer reflect their local communities, students have less opportunity to develop cultural understanding.

She adds that the reason for the ethnic divide lies in policies that encourage parents to shop for schools, over selecting their local school.

Pranay Jha, the son of Indian migrants, had the choice of attending a selective school or attending the King's School in North Parramatta on a scholarship.

His parents decided on the private school option, and Mr Jha, admits he felt isolated, and suffered from some cultural shame. 'I was surrounded by white people, and so to socially succeed in the school you needed to play down your ethnicity a lot,' he said.

Mr Jha also remembers being racially abused while playing sport and believes that if there had been more diversity at the school it would provide students from migrant backgrounds with a greater sense of solidarity.

However, the ethnic make-up of The King's School has changed since Mr Jha's graduation in 2015. At that time 31 per cent of students were LBOTE. By 2018 the number had risen to over 40 per cent

SOURCE  


Thursday, May 23, 2019


Posh privilege? Upper class people's 'belief that they are better than others' helps them to find jobs, study finds

This is just another example of the old halo effect.  In this case the halo emanates from the fact that a person is in a prestigious position. That tends to suggest other desirable attitudes in the person. I suppose the interesting thing here is the demonstration that the priviliged person himself perceives the halo.

And in this case there is good reason for the effects discussed below.  High status persons tend to have higher IQs and IQ does have wide-ranging positive effects.  So the privleged person has good grounds for feeling that he will do well on various tests.

So what we have is a demonstration of what Jesus said:  "For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance" (Matthew 13:12).

Self confidence is in some ways nearly as advantageous as high IQ



People from higher social classes believe themselves to be more capable than those of lower class, even if they are equally as qualified.

This leads to better outcomes in life-changing scenarios like job interviews as they are more confident than their less-privileged peers due to an inflated sense of self.

In a large scale study, scientists saw this to be true across the board, from business owners to undergraduates.

Dr Peter Belmi of the University of Virginia and lead author of the study, said: 'Advantages beget advantages. Those who are born in upper-class echelons are likely to remain in the upper class, and high-earning entrepreneurs disproportionately originate from highly educated, well-to-do families.'

Researchers from the University of Virginia conducted four separate investigations to look at the connection between social class and overconfidence.

In each study, they discovered that those from higher social classes tended to be more overconfident.

In one study, this overconfidence was shown to be misinterpreted by others as a higher level of competence.

In the biggest study, which involved business owners, researchers obtained information about the individual's income, education level and where they thought they stood in society.

The participants were also required to complete a psychological assessment that rated their self-perception.

'Posh privilege' occurs when people of a higher social class perceive themselves to be better than those of lower classes - even if such is unfounded.

Factors that lead to people developing posh privilege include higher levels of education, greater income and perception of belonging to a better  social class.

Others perceive this excess of assuredness as real and deserved confidence.

This leads to better outcomes in life-changing scenarios like job interviews as they are more confident than their less-privileged peers thanks to their inflated sense of self.

In a large-scale study, researchers found that this privilege applied universally - affecting everyone from students to business heads.

One experiment was a flashcard game where individuals were shown an image that disappeared after they press a key, before being replaced by another image.

They then have to determine whether the second image matched the first.

After completing 20 rounds, they were asked to rate how they think they performed compared to others on a scale of 1 to 100.

When the researchers compared the actual scores with the predicted scores, they found that people with more education, more income and a higher perceived social class had greater belief they performed better than others.

Two other groups each with 1,400 online participants found a similar association.

In one, the researchers gave participants a trivia test and those from a higher social class thought that they did better than others.

Again, when the researchers examined actual performance, no difference was found between the social classes based on this belief.

In the last experiment, researcher recruited 236 undergraduate students, and asked them to complete a 15-item trivia quiz and predict how they scored compared with others.

They were also asked to rate their social class and their families' income and their parents' education levels.

A week later, the students were brought back to the lab for a videotaped mock hiring interview.

More than 900 judges, recruited online, each watched one of the videos and rated their impression of the applicant's competence.

Not only were the higher social class students more confident, this overconfidence was interpreted by the judges who watched their videos as greater competence.

'Our research suggests that social class shapes the attitudes that people hold about their abilities and that, in turn, has important implications for how class hierarchies perpetuate from one generation to the next,'  they write in the study.

The study was published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

SOURCE