Christina Emmett Annotated Argument Monmouth University Table of Contents The Bell Curve Chapter 1 - "Cognitive Class and Education, 1900-19901) It is not just the case that more people are going to college, but that the brighter students are the ones attending. 2) Admission became more related to I. Q. than in the past.
3) There is a small part of the population that are expected to fill positions of power, yet they cannot relate to the majority of the population. Chapter 2 - "Cognitive Partitioning By Occupation 1) The correlation between I. Q. and job status is high. 2) Family members typically resemble each other in job status. 3) Biology is more of a predictor of I.
Q. than education or SES. Chapter 3 - "The Economic Pressure to Partition"1) IQ reflects a person's education, and the skills and knowledge that that person contributes to a work place (productivity). 2) IQ is strongly correlated with job status because we live in a world of artificial credentials. 3) Sheer intellectual horsepower, when independent of education, has marketing value. Meaning that people with college degrees tend to be smarter than those without degrees, making those with one more valuable and marketable.
Chapter 4 - "Steeper Ladders, Narrower Gates"/ "Cognitive Classes and Social Behavior"1) Money made in high IQ occupations is pulled away from money made in low IQ occupations, and education levels cannot explain all of the change. 2) The authors imply that these differences in intelligence are a result of genetics, not education; IQ is hereditary. 3) A person with a college degree would make more money than a person with just experience. 4) IQ makes the difference in wages. Chapter 5 - "Poverty"1) Low IQ is a stronger precursor to predicting poverty than is socioeconomic status.
2) Low IQ, or the absence of a BA would almost always result in poverty. Chapter 6 - "Schooling"1) IQ outweighs socioeconomic status and environmental background. 2) Education is more important than socioeconomic status. Chapter 7 - "Unemployment, Idleness, and Injury"1) When age is held constant, rising socioeconomic status associates with increased probability of dropping out of the labor force.
2) People with lower IQ's tend to get injured more often than those with high IQ's. Chapter 8 - "Family Matters"1) People with low I. Q.'s tend to have lower marriage rates than those with higher I. Q.'s . 2) The higher the I. Q.
, the lower the probability of divorce and / or illegitimacy. 3) Children of divorced parents have an elevated risk of getting divorced. 4) The combination of poverty and welfare cause women to have illegitimate babies. Chapter 9 - "Welfare Dependency"1) Women on welfare have less education than women not on welfare.
2) White women with above-average cognitive ability or socioeconomic background rarely become welfare recipients. Chapter 10 - "Parenting"1) Smart women are better mothers and provide a better environment for their children. 2) Middle-class parents are better parents than that of the working-class. 3) Mother's I. Q. is strongly related to a child's I.
Q. (heredity). Chapter 11 - "Crime" 1) There is a link between cognitive ability and criminal behavior. 2) There is a link between SES and criminality.
3) There is a link between broken homes and criminal behavior. Chapter 12 - "Civility and Citizenship"1) If you have a higher IQ, you are more likely to participate in political activities and understand how the government works. 2) Political participation is highly dependant on SES. 3) Education, rather than income or occupational status, links voting to SES.
Chapter 13 - "Ethnic Differences in Cognitive Ability"1) There are ethnic differences in I. Q. 2) These differences are real; they " re fairly stable, consistent, and are not the result of bias, bad testing, SES, and motivation. 3) Are these ethnic differences genetic? Chapter 14 - "Ethnic Inequalities in Relation to I.
Q." Chapter 15 - "The Demography of Intelligence " Chapter 16 - "Social Behavior and the Prevalence of Low Cognitive Ability " Table of Contents The Mis measure of Man Annotated Argument Paper Chapter 1 - September 16, 2002 This chapter outlined who went to college from the 1900's to the 1990's. However, the authors mainly focused on Ivy League schools, Harvard in particular. In the 1950's Harvard accepted two out of three applicants. This practice flip-flopped in the following years to denying two out of three applicants. Along with the competition of getting into schools came a growth of the college population. Early on, 2% of 23 year-olds with an average IQ of 115 went to college and 8% did not.
This changed by the end of WWI, when the college population took a jump. This was partially due to the fact that two generations were going to school at the same time. Along with families being more financially stable, the development of the GI bill also had an influence on the population growth. With the development of the G. I. Bill, stabilization of incomes, and money given for loans, this number of people attending college increased to 30 %.
Before then, the only people that attended school were those who came from wealthy families; after people from all ends of the spectrum attended college regardless of their financial status. In the 1980's, there was a large drop in college attendance, which was odd since the amount of money given by loans, scholarships, and foundations was at an all time high. Then, surprisingly in the mid 80's to early 90's the situation turned, and the population grew while money depleted. The development of loans and scholarship programs enabled students to attend college due to their academic success, not their bank accounts. It should have been that way all along. A study conducted, with state versus Ivy League colleges in Pennsylvania, showed that students in the state schools scored significantly lower than students attending Ivy League schools.
However, in my opinion, this argument does not hold much water because the average scores were only two points apart. To me that is not enough of a significant finding. As the population grew, more and more people attended college; but it is also true that the students attending were brighter than in previous years. Admission became more related to IQ than in the past. By 1961 this gap between public schools and elite schools had grown to become even larger for two reasons. One, was the ability to travel long distances easier, which enabled students to travel from anywhere in the country to attend the college of their choice.
Second, was the change in supply and demand of colleges. More colleges were being built, making acceptance more difficult. The top 10 schools (Harvard, Yale, Stanford, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton, etc. ) only accepted 1 out of 67 students whom had scores around 700 on the SAT-V.
These students became a small part of the population, which cannot, in my opinion, relate to the majority of the population. Yet they are expected, in most cases, to fill positions of power. This trend is magnified in elite schools, which is not necessarily a good thing. Chapter 2 - September 16, 2002 Job sorting by cognitive ability is not a decree, or an enforced process; however, it happens beneath the surface.
With the evolution of test and measures, this topic became the center for many studies. Links have been found correlating job status and intelligence many times, in many countries, with many approaches. However, there was a question about whether or not a person's educational level played a role in his or her success. A longitudinal study found that the correlation between IQ and job status is just as high without high educational levels.
The researchers tested boys and girls ages 7 and 8 to find out their IQ, and then tested them around age 26. They found that there was, in fact, no correlation between IQ and educational level since they had tested them at an early age and then retested them later on in life (once their occupation had been determined). However, the researchers made no note about environmental issues. I would have liked to read about environmental factors, social status, and parental intelligence as factors influencing these children's academic success. Which brings us to another study described in this chapter, which focuses on members in a particular family holding very similar occupations.
This study involved the observation and testing of biological twins adopted separately at birth and placed into different homes. Later on in life, those twins were evaluated against each other along with siblings who grew up in the same household. It was found that the biological twins were more closely correlated in regards to occupation than the siblings that simply grew up in the same house. The implications were applied to all types of jobs. However, the relationships change, as the occupation becomes more cognitively demanding. I originally thought that this study supported their findings, and that this conclusion was valid.
However, in discussing my chapter with the class, I changed my viewpoint on this topic. In reading through this chapter, I did not question where the study had taken place. Environment plays a huge factor in any study that is conducted. This study was conducted in Denmark, which has a small population and a minimal amount of jobs.
Therefore, increasing the possibility of the two twins to have similar occupations. This made me wonder how much of a correlation it really is, and if the results would be different in say, the United States. During the research, it was found that data was missing in the realm of omitting business executives. In 1900, more than 2/3 of all CEO's did not have a degree. It was not thought to be important back then. C.
Wright Mills named these people, the "Power Elite," born into affluence, WASP and Episcopalian. Up until 1950, CEO's received their positions due to the family name; and after, these positions were based more on educational level. By 1976, 40% of Fortune 500 companies were headed by individuals with degrees in either finance or law. These studies have proven cognitive sorting to be an efficient process. However, in my opinion, they have failed in providing evidence supporting how efficient it was. Chapter 3 - September 16, 2002 This chapter argued that IQ reflects education.
It states that intelligence is fundamentally related to a person's productivity. The text suggests that there is a correlation between intelligence and a person's productivity in the work place, which could be a good factor for employers to use when hiring. It suggests that there are three main possibilities for sorting people according to their jobs. 1. IQ reflects a person's education, and the skills and knowledge that that person contributes to a work place (productivity).
2. IQ is strongly correlated with job status because we live in a world of artificial credentials. 3. Sheer intellectual horsepower, when independent of education, has marketing value. Meaning that people with college degrees tend to be smarter than those without degrees, making those with one more valuable and marketable. The average overall correlation between job productivity and intelligence is.
4, which shows that this relationship could have large economic implications, which are consistent across jobs of all status. A lawyer with a higher IQ is said to be more productive than a lawyer with a lower IQ; as will a carpenter with a higher IQ be more productive than a carpenter with a lower IQ. It is apparent to me that education and IQ are becoming more of an important factor in job status. However, I would like to know if experience makes up for less intelligence. In my opinion, a person with experience in a certain job is more important to me than a person who has a degree. I do not agree with the statement of IQ playing a role in productivity.
I believe that productivity is driven within an individual, and there are many factors involved. In some cases, I could argue that having a low IQ would make a person strive to be more productive because they have more to prove than a person with a high IQ. The second argument in this chapter is the statement that cognitive ability and IQ relates to a person's job status. Most people think that a job interview is the best way to predict a person's ability to be productive, when in actuality it has been shown to be an ineffective measure. The text suggests that if employers were able to hire based on applicants' IQ scores, there would be more productivity within the company than if they hired based on other information.
The authors suggest that intelligence tests are a good predictor of productivity and for narrowing the field of applicants. Research has shown that the American economy loses anywhere from 13 - 80 billion dollars a year due to hiring people with lower IQ's, therefore resulting in lost productivity. I would like to know exactly where these figures come from, because I have a difficult time believing that this much money gets lost due to IQ alone. What about people going through a divorce, or people with a death in the family, or those who may simply not like their job or employer? Can't these factors influence a person's productivity in the workforce? I believe so; I do not think that the researcher's held all of these variables constant when looking at IQ and productivity. Therefore, where I do believe that IQ does play some role in productivity, I do not believe that it is as significant as the text makes it out to be. Chapter 4 - September 23, 2002 This chapter suggests that money made in high IQ occupations is pulled away from money made in low IQ occupations, and education levels cannot explain all of the change.
The authors imply that these differences in intelligence are a result of genetics, not education; IQ is hereditary. The main fact is that education sorts people by cognitive ability, which is in turn, related to productivity in the work place. During the last quarter of the century, wages rose due to people receiving college degrees. The research suggests that a person with a college degree would make more money than a person with just experience.
I disagree wholeheartedly with this statement. It has been my experience, that more often than not, people with some level of experience get hired over a simple degree. For example, the purpose of psychology majors to conduct a thesis experiment and to present it, is to be able to put the field experience into a resume, therefore increasing the chance of being hired (experience is important)! Also, the junior, senior and student teaching practicum experiences, are to give prospective teachers the experience they need to be able to handle a classroom. Again showing that a person's experiences play a vital role in the work place.
Next time an application is available, look at it. There is a section, in most cases, asking about background or experience in that field. The variables that play a role in this hypothesis go far beyond education an IQ. I do not believe that, in all cases, IQ makes the difference in wages. As I have previously stated, experience is important in being able to produce, and with experience comes knowledge, with knowledge comes more money. As with everything in this world, there is more than one way to get from point A to point B, and I believe this to be true about wages and occupation as well.
However, while I have this view, most of society does not. Cognitive ability has become more and more valuable to employers. In fact, it has become such an issue, that more jobs are being made for high IQ people because of the complexity of those jobs, and low IQ people are being pushed out of the workforce and replaced by machinery. This spread of wages resulted in the forming of two class systems: high IQ people and low IQ people.
With having a IQ being the driving force behind this, and the idea that genetics are responsible (at least in part) for this, the authors suggests that the cognitive elite are a part of society that will always be on top. Leaving no room for hope to become financially established, people with lower IQ's will eventually become unmotivated and possibly rebellious. Obviously, this is not the best thing that could happen. Chapter 5 - September 23, 2002 This chapter focused mainly on white families in the worst 5% of socioeconomic status. It was suggested, in this chapter, that low IQ is a stronger precursor to predicting poverty than is socioeconomic status. The book states that a person's IQ scores at age fifteen can predict if he or she would be living in poverty at age 30.
The authors explain that there is a correlation between poverty and cognitive disadvantages. A study was conducted with the testing of parents's socioeconomic status against the probability of their children living below the poverty line as adults. Researchers then tested the children's' cognitive, while ignoring their socioeconomic backgrounds. The results of this study were analyzed in many different ways.
It was found that the trend remained constant; but IQ did play a factor, although it was not an outstanding effect. The text then goes on to suggest that low IQ, or the absence of a BA would almost always result in poverty. "People with a BA seldom end up poor no matter what!" The book gives two examples to illustrate this idea. One is a white youth raised in an environment in which both parents were chronically unemployed or working only in the most menial of positions. Not getting past ninth grade, this youth has an IQ of 100 and a 90 % chance of being out of poverty by his or her 30's. The second scenario involves a white youth born into a solid middle-class family with a below average IQ, presenting a higher risk of living below the poverty line later on in life, despite his or her fortunate economical background.
Therefore the question becomes; "Would you rather be born smart or rich?" The answer, according to Herrnstein and Murray, is - smart. This chapter strongly advocated the idea that IQ is a much stronger predictor of poverty than the socioeconomic circumstances in which an individual would grow up under. I had a lot of trouble dealing with the assumptions made in this chapter. I have no doubt that IQ and the possession of a degree does play a part in how a person lives life and what he or she aspires to achieve.
However, in my opinion, there are many forms of intelligence and they should not be measured solely by IQ tests or whether or not a person holds a degree. Some people are bad test-takers, therefore resulting in a major disadvantage. One the other hand, a person may also be uniquely intelligent in one specific area but may not want to go to college, again putting this person at a disadvantage when taking an IQ test. I have seen to many "exceptions to the rule" to think that it is just a coincidence that people I know have made it to the top without a degree. Although I understand the underlying concepts supporting the ideas that low IQ and absence of a degree is correlated with poverty, I do not entirely agree with it. Chapter 6 - September 23, 2002 The main argument in this chapter is that IQ outweighs socioeconomic status and environmental background.
Prior to WW II not having a high school diploma was the norm; Post WW II having a diploma became the standard. Now it is considered to be a must. It also recaps the idea that a person with a poor background and a high IQ is more likely to attend college than a person with a low IQ and a lot of money. I am not so sure that this statement is true because I have met many people on campus, in which I question why they are here.
However, in most cases, I do agree that social behavior is linked to cognitive ability. I feel that a child who stays back in school would definitely feel inferior and separated from what is deemed "normal" causing him or her to become unmotivated. Therefore increasing his or her risk of failure down the line. Another argument in this chapter involves the comparison of High School diplomas against GED's. It was found that dropout rates were more common with low IQ students than with high IQ students, and those high IQ students who did happen to drop out were at least smart enough to get their GED. This chapter emphasizes the importance, once again, of education being more important than socioeconomic status.
As a person's IQ increases, his or her probability of success becomes higher, and the probability of dropping out decreases significantly. It was also found that people with low IQ's are 3 1/4 times more likely to drop out than someone who is poor. Chapter 7 - September 23, 2002 The studies in this chapter were limited to white males in the NLSY because women tend to move in and out of the work force too much to observe properly. The first important argument is that when age is held constant, rising socioeconomic status associates with increased probability of dropping out of the labor force. However, when IQ is factored in, the probability of dropping out decreases. The second argument made in this chapter is that people with lower IQ's tend to get injured more often than those with high IQ's.
However, those injuries are induced due to the jobs they do. For example, those with lower IQ's such as ditch-diggers naturally run more of a risk than those with higher IQ's such as lawyers due to the nature of their occupation. Regardless, if blue-collar workers who are presumably similar in respect to risks are looked at, the results will still support the idea that IQ plays a role. Chapter 8 - September 30, 2002 This chapter has three main arguments that I will be discussing. The first argument is that people with low I.
Q.'s tend to have lower marriage rates than those with higher I. Q.'s . The authors of this book assert that one of the main reasons for this is the fact that marriage has a lot to do with initiative, romance and economics. They go on to suggest that due to this, people with low I. Q.'s are at a major disadvantage when competing for a significant other, because they do not have the aptitude to deal with such issues. I strongly disagree with this statement.
As I do agree with the statement that people with low I. Q.'s tend to have lower marriage rates than those with higher I. Q.'s , I do not feel that those with lower I. Q.'s do not have the capability to function "normally" in relationships. The authors's second argument is that, the higher a person's I. Q.
is, the lower the probability of divorce and / or illegitimacy. They support this argument with the suggestion that the brighter a person is; the less likely he / she is to marry another on a whim. Further more, a person with a high I. Q. is less likely to act on an impulse when there is a problem with the marriage. Therefore, resulting in a longer, healthier marriage.
I agree partially with this statement because I do believe that people with higher I. Q.'s have more ways to deal with problems in their relationship. However, I think that people with lower I. Q.'s may have more to lose in a divorce, therefore forcing them to work out problems.
Whereas, a person with a high I. Q. can probably fend for him / herself , and divorce would not be as pressing or an ordeal. The third argument addressed in this chapter is that children of divorced parents have an elevated risk of getting divorced.
A broken home in the preceding generation heightens the probability of divorce for the children of those parents. The authors of this book suggest that the reason for this is because they have not had the opportunity to see how a "successful marriage" works. Instead they see divorce as an acceptable answer. I can see how the point of this argument may have some validity to it in some cases; However, I do not think that it should be generalized to all divorced families. The last argument in this chapter was that the combination of poverty and welfare causes women to have illegitimate babies. The thought behind this is that women who are on welfare are not as smart as those who aren't.
Therefore, people on welfare are less likely to calculate the best time for them to have a baby, to think ahead, and do not consider the following circumstances. It is thought, by these authors, that welfare causes women to have illegitimate babies. The logic is that a woman living below the poverty line and is assured the necessities for living, will be less likely to avoid taking precautions in not conceiving. The authors present two versions of this argument "1) the welfare system is seen as a bribery system to have babies, and 2) the welfare check enables women to do something that many young women might naturally like to do anyway: bear children." Studies have shown that women living in poverty have low I. Q.'s and bear a corresponding number of illegitimate babies. Chapter 9 - September 30, 2002 This chapter only has two main arguments in it.
The first argument that the author's make is that women on welfare have less education than women who are not on welfare. The support for this claim is that the smarter a woman is, the more likely she will be to find a good job and utilize other resources to make ends meet. A brighter woman will have the foresight to see the dangers of going on welfare, and will therefore; do all she can to stay off of it. A duller woman would fail to look ahead at the consequences, and go on welfare for immediate gratification. I am not sure what I feel about this topic, because I do think that women with lower I.
Q.'s do not have the foresight to realize the consequences of going on welfare. Just because a woman does not have a high I. Q. , it does not mean that she is blind to real-life situations. I think that a person can have a low I.
Q. and still have street smarts and the capability to rationalize their actions. However, I do feel that the welfare system makes it too easy for women to get comfortable and take advantage of the system. I think that the key to getting / staying off of welfare is within the person. In my opinion it has nothing to do with I. Q.
, rather, it has to do with ambition. The second argument in this chapter is that white women with above-average cognitive ability or socioeconomic background rarely become welfare recipients. The statistics in this book show that college-educated whites being on welfare is almost unheard of, and for those women who only have a high school degree, intelligence plays a huge part in whether or not they wind up on welfare. "Going on welfare is a really dumb idea, and that is why women who are low in cognitive ability end up there; but also women have little to take to the job market, and welfare is one of their few appropriate recourses when they have a baby to care for and no husband to help." I find this quote to be extremely offensive, in that it hits home personally. My mother raised me by myself until I was 12, without any financial help from my father. She was on welfare while I was a child, and yet she managed to get out of it, hold down a good job and raise me to the best of her ability.
Chapter 10 - September 30, 2002 This chapter on parenting has been the first chapter in which I have agreed with most of the statements. The first dispute presented was the idea that smart women are better mothers and provide a better environment for their children. I do agree that parents make a huge difference in the way that their children turn out. How parents raise their children are strongly related to how society, as a whole, functions. There are major differences between good and bad parenting. Good parenting, to simply put it, involves keeping the child nourished and healthy, keeping him / her safe from harm, feeling and expression love to the child, instilling values, and providing a framework of rules which are consistently enforced, but not unbend able.
I wholeheartedly agree with these ideas. The next contention is that middle-class parents are better parents than that of the working-class. I find the idea of different parenting styles due to social class to be an interesting topic. The authors of this book propose that the parenting styles of the working class are that which demonstrate a more authoritative attitude. These types of parents punish their children in a more physical way and the underlying reason behind this punishment is that they would like the children to display respect. On the other hand, the parenting styles of the middle-class demonstrate more reasoning in punishment procedures, and the idea behind it is to internalize the "rules of conduct." The last argument presented in chapter ten was that a mother's I.
Q. is strongly related to a child's I. Q. (heredity). There was not much to support this statement, in my opinion.
In fact the authors suggest further research on this topic. In any event, I do not believe that a mother's I. Q. solely determines her child's I.
Q. There are many other underlying factors such as environment, education and socioeconomic status. Chapter 11 - October 7, 2002 The first argument in this chapter suggests that there is link between cognitive ability and criminal behavior. In 1931, Edwin Sutherland wrote an article than put an end to the discrepancies involving the link between I. Q and criminal behavior. Sutherland's conclusion revealed that cognitive differences between prisoners and the general population were diminishing while test measures were improving.
He predicted that these differences would all together disappear. However, this was not the case. The I. Q. gap that separates offenders from non-offenders is evident, and is sometimes called, "academic competence." There is a disproportionately large number of crimes, which are committed by people toward the lower end of I. Q.
The author also holds that the smarter offenders are the ones who slipped through the cracks, and were just smart enough to not get caught. Smarter criminals get arrested less often than dull ones, because they think things through more, and they are more skillful in the execution of their crimes. However, there is not enough support to hold up this argument. The second argument presented here, is the idea that there is a link between SES and criminality.
The authors of the Bell Curve use two types of measures to test this theory. The two reports that they used were self-reports and interviews with people who were and were not incarcerated as measures of criminal behavior. The reports touched on misdemeanors, drug offenses, property offenses, and violent crimes. The authors' definition of criminality, in this respect is that, "the man's description of his own behavior put him in the top decile of frequency or self-reported criminal activity" (p. 248). After controlling the I.
Q. variable, the interviewee's socioeconomic background had little or no effect on criminal behavior. The last dispute brought about in this chapter was the proposal that there is a link between broken homes and criminal behavior. The thought underlying this concept is that children living in a home that is not intact are more likely to engage in criminal behavior later on in life. An intact family, consisting of both biological parents were correlated with better outcomes for their children more so than any other family arrangement. A study was conducted for the NLSY white males, which concluded that family setting did have an impact on criminal behavior, but it did not explain the predictive power of I.
Q. Chapter 12 - October 7, 2002 The first query in this chapter is the question of whether or not if you have a higher I. Q, you are more likely to participate in political activities and understand how the government works. The author's make a mention about a passage in Aristotle's Politics, "Man is by nature a political animal, and he who by nature and not by mere accident is without a state, is either a bad man or above humanity; he is like the tribe less, lawless, heartless one' whom Homer denounces" (p. 255). Those who do not vote or vote less are weaker elements in society than those who do vote consistently.
The study presented in this book concluded, surprisingly, that the impact of I. Q had more of an effect than socioeconomic status. The brighter children, coming from even the poorest homes with uneducated parents were able to learn rapidly about politics, government, and the possibilities for change. The second argument made in this chapter is that political participation is highly dependant on SES. Studies have shown that college graduates vote more than high school graduates, white-collar workers vote more than blue-collar workers, and the rich vote more than the poor. The trends have shown that the higher level of participation in voting, the more likely it would be that the person came from a higher socioeconomic background; those showing lower levels of participation are more likely to be from a lower socioeconomic background.
The last argument presented in this chapter was the proposal that education, rather than income or occupational status, links voting to SES. Herrnstein and Murray wanted to which of the three main components of socioeconomic status is primarily responsible for voting; education, income, and occupational status. They found that the answer was clearly education. A college education was shown to improve a person's probability of voting by almost 40%. This was found, even when income and occupational status were held constant. Chapter 13 - October 7, 2002 This chapter outlined the very essence of what the recent chapters have been discussing.
The first argument presented was the question of whether or not there are ethnic differences in I. Q. Studies show that there are definitely differences: But why? There are two major tests of I. Q: verbal and performance. Performance includes things like math, Visio spatial ability, and absolute reasoning. Among Asians versus Whites the verbal score is similar; but performance is higher in Asians.
Some researchers argue that Asians are lower in verbal. Some studies have not found any differences, such as Lynn's study in which Flynn's data was re-analyzed. In a British study, described in this book, the researchers controlled the roles of socioeconomic status and demographic variables. They also found no significant differences. However, one should be cautious in believing these results because socioeconomic status is confounded with I. Q.
It has been suggested many times, with research, that the driving force behind socioeconomic status is I. Q. The second question then becomes: are these differences real? Studies have shown that they are fairly stable, consistent, and are not the result of bias, bad testing, SES, and motivation. There are five types of bias that are thought to contribute to these ethnic differences in I. Q. First, is external bias, which are thought to test against African Americans.
It is thought that this particular I. Q. test is responsible for under predicting black success (but this doesn't seem to be the case). Actually, researchers have tended to find that Blacks and Whites with higher I. Q's are equally successful and Blacks and Whites with lower I. Q's are equally unsuccessful.
The second test is the internal bias test, which is thought to inherently favor whites over blacks. These tests reflect the white middle-class values and a person would not do well on it if they did not have the same attributes and experiences of a white middle-class person. The example of this in the book is the regatta. This argument was more reasonable 25 years ago, but nowadays many of these items have been taken out.
It has recently been shown that if an item was difficult, then both Blacks and Whites had trouble with it. The third variable is motivation. Researchers have conducted studies to find out whether or not Black's are less motivated than Whites. There is no evidence that says that they are, but there is evidence to support the fact that Blacks are not less motivated than Whites. One test that was conducted was the forward and backward digit span, which weakens the motivational argument. In that the results indicated that there were no B/W differences in the forward, only in the backward.
The second test conducted was the reaction time test, which involved holding down a button with one hand and when one of three other lights came on, the time is measured for how long it took to take the hand off the starter button and put it on the lighted button. There were two phases looked at: decision phase (light goes on and remove hand), and the movement phase (time it took to move to the lighted button). Results indicated that Blacks were slower in the decision time but faster in the movement time, and Whites were quicker in the decision time but slower in the movement time. The fourth type of bias thought to influence these ethnic differences is the uniform background bias. The underlying reasoning behind this thought is that there is something pervasive about our culture that causes Blacks to do poorly on all the items on an I. Q.
test. There is some kind of cultural or environmental influence causing this. There is not much evidence to support or deny this claim. The last factor is the role of socioeconomic status.
Researchers thought that if socioeconomic status were taken out of the equation (controlled), than these differences would lessen and eventually dissipate. The problem with this argument is that socioeconomic status is confounded with I. Q. Even when researchers looked at high socioeconomic Blacks and Whites, and low socioeconomic Blacks and Whites, there were no differences found. What appears to be an ethnic difference in I. Q is actually a socioeconomic difference.
The last question presented in this chapter is, are these ethnic differences genetic? Snyder man and Rothman conducted a study asking experts their opinion on this subject, they found: 15% thought that the reasons were strictly environmental by nature, 1% thought they were strictly genetic, 45% thought it was the combined effects of both environment and genetics, 24% had no idea, and 14% had no response. Just because I. Q. can be inherited, it does not mean that the differences are genetic.
The contribution of genetics to I. Q. is in the 40% - 80% range, which is pretty broad. Therefore most researchers just go with saying that it is around the 50% range. Profile differences show that there are no overall differences in I. Q.
If it were environmental, the impact would be broader and more consistent with no profile differences. However, this is not the case, the profile differences are consistent regardless of environment (the differences are still there). The sub scores differences exist across socioeconomic status and I. Q.
scales in both the high and low ends of the scale. This suggests differences are more genetic than environment. A younger sibling with a better environment will have a better I. Q.
than an older sibling with a poorer environment. The Flynn effect suggests that the rising test scores over the past 25 years or so, have to do with the raising of the lower half end of the distribution. The bottom line is that this subject is a hot topic in society, and this chapter does not take a strong stance in one direction or another. However, it does support the idea that all scientists believe that genetics do play some role in a person's I. Q. , they just do not know how much..