Ups and downs

Posted by – September 3, 2019

Because men’s intelligence has higher deviation (it’s scattered further away from the average) than women’s, if you mostly live around intelligent people, like university graduates, you may get more of the impression that men tend to be smarter, whereas if you mostly hang out with less intelligent people, you may get more of the impression that women tend to be smarter.

1 Comment on Ups and downs

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  1. sam says:

    Facebook comments:

    HH: That assumes that people spending time in both environments conceptualize intelligence the same way. Now I’m super curious about how well that assumption holds!
    Sam Hardwick: True, but I bet most people’s concept of it is at least pretty well correlated with the “g factor” in psychometrics, ie. that thing that IQ tests attempt to measure.
    Sam Hardwick: Caveat: probably only among roughly similar people, though. Across cultures and other differences (including large intelligence differences), interpersonal evaluation probably gets worse.
    HH: Possibly. However, I think people’s perception of someone’s intelligence hinges strongly on one’s ability to express their thoughts, effectively meaning that verbal and social intelligence probably play a big role in this.
    HH: I also suspect people have a tendency of rating intelligence higher for people who share their views
    Sam Hardwick: That’s definitely true. When talking about politics, people pretty much use “smart” to mean “agrees with me”.

    NH: Anyone who comes to the conclusion that one sex is more intelligent than the other and doesn’t question his own thought processes is pretty stupid in my book.
    Sam Hardwick: You should always question your own thought processes, but there’s no a priori reason why the sexes couldn’t differ in that, as they do in other things. The evidence suggests that the means happen to be pretty close to equal, but the variances differing as much as they apparently do is already pretty consequential.

    AP: It is not that straightforward.