Do National IQs Predict U.S. Immigrant Cognitive Ability and Outcomes? An Analysis of the National Longitudinal Survey of Freshman

Apparently so.

Fuerst, J., Kirkegaard, E. O. (2014). Do National IQs Predict U.S. Immigrant Cognitive Ability and Outcomes? An Analysis of the National Longitudinal Survey of Freshman. Open Differential Psychology.


We discuss the global hereditarian hypothesis of race differences in g and test it on data from the NLSF. We find that migrants country of origin’s IQ predicts GPA and SAT/ACT.


  1. Jimmy

    Just a question: If there’s a 5 point IQ difference favoring men over women, how would you calculate the ratio of men to women who have IQs of 160, 170 and 180? Thanks guys.

    • Chuck

      5 IQ points is 0.33 SD (where SD=15). If we set IQ = 100 as the average of the whole population and if there is an equal number of Males (M) and Females (F), MIQ= 0.165 above the mean (IQ=102.5) and FIQ = 0.165 below the mean (IQ=97.5). To compute the percent of people at a particular cut off, you can use:
      So, for example, 56.6% of males would be above IQ = 100 (whole population), while only 43.4% of females would be. The M/F ratio would be about 56.6/43.4. (In the z-score box just type male = -0.165, female = 0.165) Now repeat this exercise with 1 -0.165 (male) and 1 +0.165 (female) for IQ 115, 2 -0.165 (male) and 2 + 0.165 (female) for IQ 130, and so on.

      Note that IQ has fat tails (the distribution is not perfectly normal), so this would just be an approximation.

  2. ashley

    I think we need to find a way to enhance people’s iQ

  3. MikeS

    Any thoughts on this recent article from a criminology journal calling for “an end to heritability studies”, lol:

    • Chuck

      The authors sum it up: “As with many of the other problems we have discussed in quantitative genetics, this criticism of heritability studies is not new.”

      As Sandra Scarr noted, each of the numerous behavioral genetic (BG) methods may be criticized but the methods overlap such that the criticisms never punch all of the way through. It is somewhat surprising that the same tiresome line of attack is trotted out time and time again. A sensible article would simple point out that inferences are complex, that because each method has its own flaws, one must use multiple methods to test assumptions, and then caution against hasty inferences. Not this. BG has a reply to all criticisms — if you want I will explain — each assumption can be checked using a different BG method. But the authors fail take BG as a whole. Imagine creationists criticizing evolutionary theory by making piecemeal critiques.

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