• Question: Are you born smart and if so, why?

    Asked by NotSally to Ceri, Marikka, Matt, Rob, Sally on 18 Nov 2014.
    • Photo: Sally Cutler

      Sally Cutler answered on 18 Nov 2014:

      I think you are born with a potential of being smart and the rest is down to you as to whether you use that and develop it further.

    • Photo: Ceri Dare

      Ceri Dare answered on 18 Nov 2014:

      I think it has more to do with the environment you grow up in – for example whether your parents read to you, or whether you have a good diet.

    • Photo: Robert Hampson

      Robert Hampson answered on 19 Nov 2014:

      Extensive research has been done in this area. It seems that some people are born with more potential for logical and abstract reasoning (what people generally refer to when they talk about “smartness”). However, many people with lower potential can overtake those with higher potential by working harder or having a better environment. One of the ways to predict IQ in children is a mix between parents IQ, socioeconomic status of parents, and the amount of time parents spend with their kids. It seems that the parents ability to teach and the amount of teaching and their expectations which most greatly affects children’s “smartness”.

      If we can provide parents with more incentive and opportunity to care for and teach their children, we are likely to end up with a “smarter” populace.