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Racial IQ Gap Narrows: Blacks Gain 4 To 7 Points On Whites
Science News ^ | 8-6-2006 | Eric jaffe

Posted on 08/06/2006 2:14:03 PM PDT by blam

Racial IQ Gap Narrows: Blacks gain 4 to 7 points on whites

Eric Jaffe

A statistical analysis of four national intelligence tests indicates that the difference in scores between blacks and whites decreased by about a third between 1972 and 2002. The findings challenge a century-old argument that the racial gap in performance on IQ tests is primarily genetic and therefore invulnerable to social change, say the researchers who performed the new study.

They examined data that have only recently become available to researchers, says William Dickens of the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. Using test results from a random distribution of people in the United States, he and James R. Flynn of the University of Otago in New Zealand tallied the increases in IQ scores of blacks and whites over 3 decades. Each of the four tests analyzed included two or three groups of people that took the test at different times.

Previous measures of the intelligence gap, which had used localized populations tested only once, found blacks 15 to 18 IQ points lower than whites, Dickens says.

In the new analysis, all four tests reflected a similar gap in 1972 but indicated that blacks have since gained ground in IQ.

"The whole distribution of black cognitive ability is moving up relative to whites," says Dickens. "There's no reason to believe [the gap] isn't going to get more narrow as we move forward and as measures of social equality continue to improve."

Neither increased rates of mixed ancestry nor changes in test content explain the narrowing gap, Dickens and Flynn argue in the October Psychological Science.

Last year, a review by J. Philippe Rushton of the University of Western Ontario in Canada and Arthur Jensen of the University of California, Berkeley concluded that intelligence is determined predominantly by genetics. The researchers argued that the IQ gap had held steady for a century, despite social-equality efforts, and noted that studies of adopted children and twins have attributed 80 percent of the gap to genetics.

The new data, by contrast, instead indicate that environmental factors contribute greatly to IQ scores, says Flynn. "It's exciting to show that the gap isn't written in the stars," he says.

But the new findings contain many holes, Rushton and Jensen maintain in a rebuttal published with the study. For example, Dickens and Flynn "cherry-picked" their results by leaving out four tests that don't support their conclusions, Rushton says.

Dickens answers that the tests that he and Flynn omitted were less reliable than the ones that they included.

A 4-to-7-point closure in the gap would be "truly astounding," says Linda Gottfredson of the Delaware–Johns Hopkins Project for the Study of Intelligence and Society.

However, the conclusion "just doesn't fit" with data showing that in the past 30 years, U.S. black children between the ages of 9 and 17 have approached white children in reading scores but not in science and math, she says. If general intelligence, as measured by IQ tests, were really rising, scores would have increased in all subjects.

A fundamental problem with studies of IQ-test results is that "nobody really knows what intelligence is," says psychometrician Peter H. Schönemann of Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind.

The new findings "won't change that many minds," says Doug Detterman of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, who is editor of the journal Intelligence. More important than measuring a gap, he says, is identifying the specific environmental factors or genes that contribute to intelligence.

If you have a comment on this article that you would like considered for publication in Science News, send it to editors@sciencenews.org. Please include your name and location.


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 4; 7; badnewsfordnc; blacks; education; gain; gap; iq; narrows; points; racial; whites

1 posted on 08/06/2006 2:14:06 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Can I get reparations for those 7 points?


2 posted on 08/06/2006 2:17:06 PM PDT by Puppage (You may disagree with what I have to say, but I shall defend to your death my right to say it)
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To: blam

how do we know this is not because of intermarriage? they define "black" very loosely.


3 posted on 08/06/2006 2:17:28 PM PDT by chichilarue
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To: blam
Rule #1: There is NO difference in IQ scores between whites and blacks.
Rule #2: We do NOT talk about the difference in IQ scores between whites and blacks.
Rule #3: If black IQ scores increase relative to whites, make sure it runs above the fold.
4 posted on 08/06/2006 2:17:29 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy ("He hits me, he cries, he runs to the court and sues me.")
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To: blam

^


5 posted on 08/06/2006 2:18:26 PM PDT by Frank T
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To: blam


See anything is possible when you dumb down education. :)


6 posted on 08/06/2006 2:19:08 PM PDT by Tzimisce (How Would Mohammed Vote? Hillary for President! www.dndorks.com)
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To: blam

Critics of IQ tests have argued themselves blue that the tests are biased, IQ is a nebulous concept that can't be effectively measured, blah blah blah. I wonder what they'll say now that there's a study that shows an improvement. Will they suddenly be on board, or will they continue to say that attempting to measure IQ is a stupid -- if not racist -- thing to do?


7 posted on 08/06/2006 2:19:57 PM PDT by John Jorsett (scam never sleeps)
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To: blam

Good! I hope that this reflects a growing black middle class.


8 posted on 08/06/2006 2:20:21 PM PDT by DeuceTraveler (Freedom is a never ending struggle)
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To: blam

And the libs say conservatives ignore science.

Ann Coulter was right. My faith tells me all human beings have equal worth. All the libs have are IQ tests, which they have to sweep under the rug.


9 posted on 08/06/2006 2:21:02 PM PDT by cvq3842
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To: blam

..and if they had included Cindy Sheehan in the study blacks would have gained 10 points in IQ!


10 posted on 08/06/2006 2:22:20 PM PDT by fkabuckeyesrule
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To: DeuceTraveler
Good! I hope that this reflects a growing black middle class.

Probably. Thomas Sowell predicted this years ago, based on the experience of many immigrant groups, who scored low on IQ tests until their social and economic situations improve.

11 posted on 08/06/2006 2:25:50 PM PDT by maryz
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To: DeuceTraveler

Me too, that would be the upside, the down side could be dumbing down the public schools hits some groups harder then others.


12 posted on 08/06/2006 2:26:08 PM PDT by jpsb
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To: blam

This is good news. If the IQ of Blacks keep increasing pretty soon they will figure out that the dems have been screwing them all these years.


13 posted on 08/06/2006 2:27:38 PM PDT by Michael.SF. (The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other peoples money -- M. Thatcher)
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To: blam
 WHITES  are getting
DUMMER

14 posted on 08/06/2006 2:28:37 PM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Give Them Liberty Or Give Them Death! - IT'S ISLAM, STUPID! - Islam Delenda Est! - Rumble thee forth)
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To: DeuceTraveler

The black middle class which has grown bigtime since the 50s votes hardly different from any other "black class".

plenty of smart poor people btw


15 posted on 08/06/2006 2:29:02 PM PDT by wardaddy (I have undergone Harpie detox, it was very tough but well worth it)
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To: ClearCase_guy

LOL, err, I mean, (lol, quietly, under my breath while walking away)


16 posted on 08/06/2006 2:29:17 PM PDT by giobruno
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To: blam

btw....whites are allegedly at least one level smarter than a century ago as well.


17 posted on 08/06/2006 2:30:02 PM PDT by wardaddy (I have undergone Harpie detox, it was very tough but well worth it)
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To: maryz
Probably. Thomas Sowell predicted this years ago, based on the experience of many immigrant groups, who scored low on IQ tests until their social and economic situations improve.

This would argue that IQ is more nurture then nature.

As we are only half baked at birth this makes sense.

18 posted on 08/06/2006 2:30:36 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (A propensity to hope and joy is real riches; one to fear and sorrow, real poverty)
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To: blam

This is directly related to Paris and Nikki Hilton and Britney Spears isn't it??


19 posted on 08/06/2006 2:31:16 PM PDT by GeronL (http://www.mises.org/story/1975 <--no such thing as a fairtax)
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To: ClearCase_guy

LOL!

Very perceptive


20 posted on 08/06/2006 2:31:50 PM PDT by Balding_Eagle (God has blessed Republicans with willfully ignorant enemies.)
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To: blam
"Rushton and Jensen maintain in a rebuttal published with the study. For example, Dickens and Flynn "cherry-picked" their results by leaving out four tests that don't support their conclusions, Rushton says."

The usual egalitarian stupidities...

21 posted on 08/06/2006 2:33:00 PM PDT by Reactionary (The Barking of the Native Moonbat is the Sound of Moral Nitwittery)
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To: blam

Stupidity crosses all racial boundaries and is an equal opportunity inhibitor. Look at how many supposedly educated whites are members of the Democratic Party.


22 posted on 08/06/2006 2:34:08 PM PDT by WestVirginiaRebel (Common sense will do to liberalism what the atomic bomb did to Nagasaki-Rush Limbaugh)
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To: blam

I wonder what the correlation between IQ and political affiliation tells us.


23 posted on 08/06/2006 2:36:37 PM PDT by Luke Skyfreeper
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To: blam

Wait a second-- aren't these the same folks who insist there was never any racial differences in IQ to begin with?


24 posted on 08/06/2006 2:39:42 PM PDT by Beauceron
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To: ClearCase_guy

The statistical analysis is interesting, but one can't use it to predict the relative IQ's of any two people in any particular circumstance, so I wonder what value this is, whether true or not. I am white. There are blacks with higher and lower IQ's than mine (I am fortunate that I do have a fairly high IQ, not that you can it, the way I act sometimes). Assuming IQ is relevant to a comparison of people in a particular setting, this statistical information is of no value.


25 posted on 08/06/2006 2:40:30 PM PDT by NCLaw441
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To: blam

Eugenics rears its ugly head again.


26 posted on 08/06/2006 2:43:06 PM PDT by Seruzawa (If you agree with the French raise your hand - If you are French raise both hands.)
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide

WHITES are getting dumber?I think the whole country is getting dumber.
Just listen to the tenor of everyday conversations.Trivial fluff about celebrities,TV shows,gossip about"fags", talk of things I have and you don't and who will win how much at the Indian Casino this weekend.
Blacks,whites,Filipinos,Latinos-not one of them very bright as a group from my experiences.


27 posted on 08/06/2006 2:45:14 PM PDT by Riverman94610
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To: Tzimisce
See anything is possible when you dumb down education. :)

You can say that again... Oh wait, I can do that too!

BTTT 'cause it deserves saying AND is not PC!

28 posted on 08/06/2006 2:48:41 PM PDT by SandwicheGuy (*The butter acts as a lubricant and speeds up the CPU*)
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To: Luke Skyfreeper

Correlation between IQ and political affiliation?
Well,polls have shown that the two highest groups who vote Dem in the greatest percentages are high school dropouts and people with Post-Grad degrees.
Now what does THAT say?


29 posted on 08/06/2006 2:50:56 PM PDT by Riverman94610
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To: cvq3842
Ann Coulter was right. My faith tells me all human beings have equal worth. All the libs have are IQ tests, which they have to sweep under the rug.

You are soooooo right! Well said.

30 posted on 08/06/2006 2:52:02 PM PDT by SandwicheGuy (*The butter acts as a lubricant and speeds up the CPU*)
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To: Beauceron

And the same ones that say that race doesn't exist, or that there's no way to tell who's black and who's white.


31 posted on 08/06/2006 2:54:24 PM PDT by aquila48
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide
Whites are getting DUMMer

LOL! In your case that is certainly true! I think you were going for 'dumber' right? But that means one who cannot speak, one who is so amazed they are 'Struck dumb' and unable to speak. That is not what you meant, I take it? Congrats on the HTML though.

32 posted on 08/06/2006 2:55:51 PM PDT by SandwicheGuy (*The butter acts as a lubricant and speeds up the CPU*)
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To: Riverman94610
Well,polls have shown that the two highest groups who vote Dem in the greatest percentages are high school dropouts and people with Post-Grad degrees. Now what does THAT say?

I once worked at a University. In my experience, people working on their undergrad degree tended to be reasonably polite, and reasonably bright. People working on Masters were arrogant and kind of dumb. People working on doctorates were very easy to spot: the guy pushing on the door marked "pull" and screaming obscenities at the staff was nearly done with his PhD.

33 posted on 08/06/2006 3:02:38 PM PDT by ClearCase_guy ("He hits me, he cries, he runs to the court and sues me.")
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To: cvq3842
Ann Coulter was indeed right and her views on IQ will not go over well with the kumbaya crowd here or anywhere.

"Contrary to the party line denying that such a thing as IQ existed, the book methodically demonstrated that IQ exists, it is easily measured, it is heritable, and it is extremely important. Among many other things, IQ is a better predictor than socioeconomic status of poverty, unemployment, criminality, divorce, single motherhood, workplace injuries, and high school dropout rates. Although other factors influence IQ, such as a good environment and nutrition, The Bell Curve authors estimated that IQ was about 40 to 80 percent genetic."

34 posted on 08/06/2006 3:04:23 PM PDT by wardaddy (I have undergone Harpie detox, it was very tough but well worth it)
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To: blam
Since the black kings that sold their own people into slavery presumably didn't sell their best and brightest are their any comparisons between native Africans and white people?
35 posted on 08/06/2006 3:15:46 PM PDT by avile
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide

Ya beat me to the punch.


36 posted on 08/06/2006 3:21:14 PM PDT by dr_who_2
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To: blam

The real question is this. Are blacks doing better on these tests or are whites doing worse.

Are blacks IQ getting stronger or are white IQ's gtting weaker.


37 posted on 08/06/2006 3:33:54 PM PDT by sgtbono2002 (The fourth estate is a fifth column.)
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To: chichilarue
how do we know this is not because of intermarriage? they define "black" very loosely.

Why would intermarriage have anything to do with this finding?

38 posted on 08/06/2006 3:36:53 PM PDT by trumandogz
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide

Irony...


39 posted on 08/06/2006 3:38:01 PM PDT by dakine
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To: Beauceron
Wait a second-- aren't these the same folks who insist there was never any racial differences in IQ to begin with?

No, everybody knows there are racial differences in IQ scores. The issue is whether there are racial difference in innate intelligence which is an alltogether different question (I don't believe that there are). I think the evidence -- and you can count this article in with that -- indicates that IQ scores are largely dependent on education, and it's no secret that blacks tend to get poorer educations than whites in the United States.

40 posted on 08/06/2006 3:38:46 PM PDT by Alter Kaker ("Whatever tears one sheds, in the end one always blows one's nose." - Heine)
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To: blam

Why bother with this argument? Everybody with a consciousness knows that intelligence potential, like muscle potential, is passed on genetically. Regardless of what you are born with, if you do not exercise the tools they will wither away.

If you have a very doumb kid it's most likely because they were born to a very dumb parent. Whether it is genetic, or out of sheer ignorance and neglect, it is still the responsibility of the parent.

And by the time the schools get them, after 5-6 years, it's likely already too late to develop the tools.


41 posted on 08/06/2006 3:39:56 PM PDT by AbeKrieger (Liberals are the Mongol herds destroying America from within.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

Ha,pushing on the door marked pull!Reminds me of that old Far Side cartoon.Sure do miss Gary Lawson.
My theory is that the high popularity of liberal Democrats among the highly educated arises from the fact that the "real"world is just too harsh for their Utopian idealism.Liberals appeal to the sentiment in the human species that says"things could be perfect if only"....PHD's and the like have lived in the academic world all their lives where this feeling is enabled over and over again.
As for the very poorly educated,it is just gullibility and the belief that the government will"help us".Very dangerous and naive proposition.


42 posted on 08/06/2006 3:53:15 PM PDT by Riverman94610
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To: blam
Did the study say anything about whether the 7-point gap the Japanese used to enjoy has been narrowed by all that Hello Kitty paraphernalia?
43 posted on 08/06/2006 4:31:50 PM PDT by BlazingArizona
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To: All

Someday I'll have an IQ, and it will be a really high one.


44 posted on 08/06/2006 6:01:10 PM PDT by KarinG1 (Some of us are trying to engage in philosophical discourse. Please don't allow us to interrupt you.)
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To: KarinG1

Nobody from DU has ever posted at FR.


45 posted on 08/06/2006 6:08:41 PM PDT by KarinG1 (Some of us are trying to engage in philosophical discourse. Please don't allow us to interrupt you.)
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To: blam

Are the blacks getting smarter or are the whites getting dumber?


46 posted on 08/06/2006 6:51:01 PM PDT by Chickensoup (S)
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To: blam

Since very few American blacks are pure black any more, I wonder how many of the blacks tested have what percentage of white or asian blood in them.


47 posted on 08/06/2006 6:56:24 PM PDT by Spirited
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To: Spirited

I believe studies have been proposed to assess the IQ levels of blacks while simultaneously evaluating DNA for racial admixture. Didn't go over too well! The Bell Curve showed Asians with the highest IQ, whites next and blacks last. The disappointing thing about the nurture theory is that when children of successful upper middle class blacks are tested, they still have lower scores. I have never seen anything on the test scores on the parents of these black children. I read an article by Charles Murray about 6 months ago in the WSJ. I wish I were as smart as he but I believe I recalled he noted this increase in black IQ but there are several measurements within the IQ system and the most important one (I cannot remember its name) did not seem to be improving in the black children.


48 posted on 08/06/2006 7:15:56 PM PDT by AZFolks
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To: NCLaw441
That's true, you can't make individual predictions based on group data. One use for such data, however, is implied by the article--it allows population comparisons across time. It may be useful to know that in general, the gap is closing--something is happening, presumably good. Followup research to determine the cause may allow for policy considerations to do more (or less) of something.
49 posted on 08/06/2006 7:40:59 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: Riverman94610
polls have shown that the two highest groups who vote Dem in the greatest percentages are high school dropouts and people with Post-Grad degrees. Now what does THAT say?

For one thing, the bulk of people with postgraduate degrees are professors on university campuses, self-selected for being leftwing dipsh&ts. Hordes of them have degrees in meaningless "specialities" which have no relevance to the world outside their hothouse affirmative action bubbles.

50 posted on 08/06/2006 7:45:06 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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