Wednesday, March 31, 2010

You DON'T get much dumber as you get older

As it turns out, 38-67% of the apparent deterioration in intelligence due to age isn’t due to an actual decline, but is consistent with the Flynn effect.  So, we aren’t getting dumber as we age, we may be just less oriented toward specific types of abstract concepts than those who are younger.

The Flynn effect is named after its discoverer, who noted that scores on intelligence tests go up over time (despite little actual evidence that the population has any larger proportion of geniuses than it used to). The Flynn effect is therefore often regarded as a complicated artifact; for much more see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flynn_effect and other places.