Sunday, November 06, 2005

Are men smarter than women?

The clear answer is ‘no’. I am not going to claim that women are smarter than men, but only that studies have generally shown that there are no differences in IQ levels between men and women.

Dr Paul Irwing and Professor Richard Lynn conducted a meta-analysis of the IQs of men and women, meaning that they took dozens of previously conducted studies and carried out an intense statistical analysis on them. Their findings indicated that men increasingly outnumber women as IQs get higher. For example, they claimed that twice as many men as women have IQs of 125, while 5.5 times more men than women have IQs of 155.

Irwing and Lynn’s study was published last week in the British Journal of Psychology, but in an unconventional move, they had announced their findings to journalists two months before the publication of their paper and without making their findings available to other academics. That move got them numerous invitations to appear on radio and television.

But in this week’s issue of Nature (a highly respected international science journal), Dr Steve Blinkhorn has denounced their work, claiming that it is “deeply flawed” and calling it “simple, utter hogwash.” The first flaw in Irwing and Lynn’s methodology was that they carefully selected studies which would support their findings while excluding those that would contradict them, thereby skewing their results. Blinkhorn has also accused the researchers of employing a number of statistical manoeuvres which he describes as being “flawed and suspect”.

It may also be useful here to note that Professor Lynn has previously claimed that white people are inherently more clever than black people.

There is a vast body of work on the subject of gender and IQ that has found no differences between men and women. Blinkhorn has summarised the situation thus: “Sex differences in average IQ, if they exist at all, are too small to be interesting.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Men are smarter than women in certain subjects or things just like women are smarter than men in other subjects and things.

Behind every successful man stands a women telling him what to do.