IQ Testing : From Correlation to Causation

It is well known and acknowledged that IQ correlates with social outcomes (Herrnstein & Murray, 1994; Jensen, 1998; Gottfredson, 1997), measures of health (Gottfredson, 2003, & Deary, 2004; Reeve & Basalik, 2010), wages (Jones & Schneider, 2008), savings (Jones, 2012), job performance (Ree & Earles, 1994; Hunter & Schmidt, 2004), training success (Ree & Earles, 1991), general knowledge (Reeve, 2004), general economic peformance (Jones & Schneider, 2006; Jones, 2011, 2012; Hafer & Jones, 2012; Meisenberg, 2012; Kalonda-Kanyama & Kodila-Tedika, 2012), and this, without mentioning other many correlates of importance (Lynn & Vanhanen, 2012). But IQ critics usually claim that correlational studies tell us nothing about the causal link. The present article will introduce some research on this topic.

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Les tests QI, de corrélation à causalité

S’il est aujourd’hui bien admis et reconnu que le QI corrèle avec les résultats socio-économiques (Herrnstein & Murray, 1994; Jensen, 1998; Gottfredson, 1997), les indices et mesures de santé (Gottfredson, 2003, & Deary, 2004; Reeve & Basalik, 2010), le salaire (Jones & Schneider, 2008), l’épargne (Jones, 2012), la performance au travail (Ree & Earles, 1994), la performance dans les cours de formation (Ree & Earles, 1991), les connaissances générales (Reeve, 2004), la performance économique générale (Jones & Schneider, 2006; Jones, 2011, 2012; Hafer & Jones, 2012; Meisenberg, 2012; Kalonda-Kanyama & Kodila-Tedika, 2012), et ceci, sans mentionner d’autres corrélats bien évidents (Lynn & Vanhanen, 2012), les critiques continuent à affirmer que la causalité n’est pas prouvée pour autant. Le présent article s’attèle à présenter l’état des recherches actuelles sur le sujet.

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Jensen effect on racial IQ differences and GPA controlling for SES in the NLSY79 and NLSY97

In The g Factor, Jensen (1998, pp. 384-385) states that because races differ in SES levels, the Spearman-Jensen effect (i.e., g-loading correlates) found in racial IQ differences (hispanics, denoted H; blacks, denoted B; whites, denoted W) could simply reflect this fact. One reason seems to be that SES correlates with g-loadings although he affirms that it was irrelevant to Spearman’s hypothesis (furthermore, this does not necessarily imply that IQ gain due to SES improvement is itself g-loaded; see Jensen 1997, or Metzen 2012). When testing this hypothesis anyway, it was shown that the WISC subtests’ correlation with SES is correlated with WISC g-loading in both the white and black samples. Also, when matching for SES, the BW difference still correlates strongly with g-loadings. Presently, I will try to replicate this result.

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Genetic similarity, human altruism, and group selection

Genetic similarity, human altruism, and group selection

J. Philippe Rushton (1989)

Abstract: A new theory of attraction and liking based on kin selection suggests that people detect genetic similarity in others in order to give preferential treatment to those who are most similar to themselves. There are many sources of empirical and theoretical support for this view, including (1) the inclusive fitness theory of altruism, (2) kin recognition studies of animals raised apart, (3) assortative mating studies, (4) favoritism in families, (5) selective similarity among friends, and (6) ethnocentrism. Specific tests of the theory show that (1) sexually interacting couples who produce a child are genetically more similar to each other in blood antigens than they are either to sexually interacting couples who fail to produce a child or to randomly paired couples from the same sample; (2) similarity between marriage partners is most marked in the more genetically influenced of sets of anthropometric, cognitive, and personality characteristics; (3) after the death of a child, parental grief intensity is correlated with the child’s similarity to the parent; (4) long-term male friendship pairs are more similar to each other in blood antigens than they are to random dyads from the same sample; and (5) similarity among best friends is most marked in the more genetically influenced of sets of attitudinal, personality, and anthropometric characteristics. The mechanisms underlying these findings may constitute a biological substrate of ethnocentrism, enabling group selection to occur.

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Path Analysis of IQ during Infancy and Early Childhood and an Index of the Home Environment in the Colorado Adoption Project

Path Analysis of IQ during Infancy and Early Childhood and an Index of the Home Environment in the Colorado Adoption Project

TREVA RICE
D. W. FULKER
J. C. DEFRIES
University of Colorado, Boulder

ROBERT PLOMIN
Pennsylvania State University

INTELLIGENCE 12, 27-45 (1988)

A parent-offspring adoption path model, which includes a measured index of the home environment, was formulated to assess the extent to which relationships between the environmental index and children’s behavior are mediated by genetic and environmental influences of the parents. In addition to the direct effect of the home environment on children’s behavior, three types of indirect effects mediated by parental phenotype are considered: a pure environmental effect, a pure genetic effect, and a combined environmental-genetic effect. To illustrate its application, the model was fitted to parental and offspring IQ data collected in the Colorado Adoption Project and an environmental index based on Caldwell and Bradley’s (1978) Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment (HOME). Four sets of data, including the HOME index and offspring IQ measured longitudinally at 1, 2, 3, and 4 years of age, were analyzed. The results suggest that in infancy (ages 1 and 2), the HOME reveals a direct environmental effect on children’s IQ as well as indirect effects mediated via parental IQ. Surprisingly, during early childhood (ages 3 and 4), the relationship between the HOME and children’s IQ is due only to indirect parental mediation. Moreover, other than at year 1, the mediation is purely genetic.

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Investigation of the relationship between mental retardation with heritability and environmentality of the Wechsler subtests

The present analysis is an extension of Spitz’s earlier (1988) study on the relationship between mental retardation (MR) lower score and subtest heritability (h2) and g-loadings. These relationships were found to be positive. But Spitz himself haven’t tested the possibility that MR (lower) score could be related with shared (c2) or nonshared (e2) environment. I use the WAIS and WISC data given in my earlier post, and have found that MR is not related with c2 and e2 values. These findings nevertheless must be interpreted very carefully because the small number of subtests (e.g., 10 or 11) is a very critical limitation.

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Méta-analyse des corrélations entre le facteur g et les indices d’héritabilité et environnementalité des sous-tests de QI

Il existe aujourd’hui assez peu de tests ayant investi la question de la relation entre le facteur g et l’héritabilité. Herman Spitz (1988) est probablement l’un des premiers connus à avoir tenté un tel test. Rijsdijk (2002) également démontre une telle relation. La seule méta-analyse connue à ce jour vient de van Bloois et al. (2009, p. 61) malgré le fait qu’elle soit encore restée non publiée. Quoi qu’il en soit, aucun n’avait semble-t-il tenté de tester un possible lien entre facteur g et environnement partagé ou non-partagé. Il aurait peut-être été problématique pour la théorie héréditariste si la corrélation entre g et l’héritabilité (h2) est équivalente à celle entre g et l’environnement, partagé (c2) ou non partagé (e2), sauf si ladite théorie fournit l’explication au phénomène. Rushton (2007) a été peut-être le seul à le tenter, bien qu’utilisant un tout autre test QI, les matrices progressive de Raven. La corrélation entre g et h2 était positive mais plus faible qu’entre g et e2, bien que g et c2 corrélait à zéro. L’échantillon de jumeaux utilisé par Rushton était néanmoins assez faible. La présente analyse s’attèle donc à présenter des résultats méta-analytiques.

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