Study Claims Taller People Are Smarter

rockthecasbah

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 12, 2005
2,395
2
Moorestown, NJ
According to a study, not only are taller people paid higher wages than their shorter counterparts, but they are in general smarter as well. Claims of this are supposedly true in "congnitive testing of three year olds" according to the article... It also says tall people are healthier and have low self esteem, while short people are socially descriminated against.

I'm sorry but this study is just full of crap to me. Taller people and wages... possibly true. A lot of subconscious things go on that we don't know about. The intelligence part however, utter bs. I hardly know any people that are tall and smart. In fact, i find most very smart people i know are in fact average or a little shorter... just a coincidence in my opinion though. In terms of real life occurences, i generally seem more likely to bump into a dumb tall person than a smart one.

Anyway, you guys have a go with that. BTW, a moderator note, if this gets too political / social debatey, move it to the political forum. I was torn between where to post this thread...:eek:

link.


EDIT: Before i get attacked for calling tall people or short people whatever, i want to make it clear that i am exactly average height, 5' 9''... and i'm not taking sides or attacking anyone... :)
 

ham_man

macrumors 68020
Jan 21, 2005
2,265
0
Gladwell talked about this in one of his books. It was probably The Tipping Point...
 

RBMaraman

macrumors 65816
Jul 25, 2002
1,217
13
Louisville, KY
Interesting study, but more or less utterly filled with crap. I'm sorry, but at 3 years old, you can't really tell who will be tall vs. short. When I was three I was the same height as my best friend who is now 6 foot 5 inches (see my height below).

Essentially this study appears to imply that being short is a bad thing. As a 23-year-old, 5 foot 4 inch tall, caucasian male living in the United States, I can tell you that being short has many advantages, including:

1. Unlike tall people, short people can sit comfortably in the front or back seats of any automobile. :D
2. Short people always have someone to look up too! (I know, terribly corny joke).
3. Short people can always find our clothing or shoe size. We don't have to special order because the stores don't carry those crazy sizes tall people need.

Of course, there are some disadvantages:

1. Whenever a short person goes to the movies, theatre, concert, etc.; it's guaranteed a person 12 inches taller than them will be sitting in front of them, completely blocking the view. Lesson to tall people: SIT IN THE FREAKING REAR!!!!!!
2. Crowds are a b****. Tall people have a BAD habit of never looking down, nearly stepping on short people as they move around.
 

KingYaba

macrumors 68040
Aug 7, 2005
3,416
12
Up the irons
Socially descriminated against, hahahaha. Try fitting on an airplane when you are 6'4", or try fitting in a sedan. Get your knees hitting the friggin steering wheel. Try dancing with that lovely lady you've admired for a while. It's akward as hell when you are a foot taller.

But there are plenty plently of advantages of being tall. :) I exploit a lot. I don't think intelligence is tied with hight in anyway. Ive seen real dumb short and tall people. Mostly blondes ;)
 

xsedrinam

macrumors 601
Oct 21, 2004
4,347
1
ham_man said:
Gladwell talked about this in one of his books. It was probably The Tipping Point...
Randy Newman sang about it, too. But that was way before "If I Didn't Have You." ;)
 

ZoomZoomZoom

macrumors 6502a
May 2, 2005
767
0
Yeah, the study doesn't really take into account Asian people... I know it's a generalization, but you know it's true :)

I would think that intelligence would come more from parents' genetics (i tend to notice that usually smart parents = smart kids, and usually smart kids also have smart siblings. reverse also true) and from nurture (there are born geniuses, but apart from that, i think i would have turned out pretty stupid if i were born in a 3rd world country to rice farmers).
 

Mr Skills

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2005
801
1
OK, without seeing the actual studiy I can't tell whether they were well-conducted or not, but people are certainly misunderstanding certain things about it:

1. This was not a study of three-year-olds. In fact it was a meta-study (i.e. combining the results of other studies) which took into account results obtained "as early as" three, and "throughout adulthood".

2. It did not claim that "taller people are smarter" - only the journalist reporting it did that. It merely reported a correlation between being tall and being smart. This is quite different.

3. It did not claim that being tall "makes" people smarter, but that both tallness and smartness are themselves influenced by similar things (e.g. nutrition).

4. They didn't forget about Asian people - they specifically stated that this only took into account British and American people, i.e. they were aware of their own limitations.

5. More generally, a study like this is not indented to be final and all-conclusive, although it is more exciting for the journalist to report it that way. Science does not work through individual world-changing experiments. This study is just one more piece in a giant tapestry of knowledge being built up in its particular area. To understand what is known in an area you must look at the whole body of knowledge, not just one study which will be tested and criticised and repeated and altered by other scientists.


That was all a bit serious, so he's some smiling for you: :) :) :)




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Mr Skills

macrumors 6502a
Nov 21, 2005
801
1
ZoomZoomZoom said:
I would think that intelligence would come more from parents' genetics (i tend to notice that usually smart parents = smart kids, and usually smart kids also have smart siblings. reverse also true).
That is not sufficient evidence of genetic effects. You share a common environment and cultural influence with your parents and siblings. This is why separated-identical-twin studies are so exciting for scientists studying in these areas - you can see how people with the same genetic make-up fared in different environments. If you ever find your long-lost-twin you could make a fortune putting yourselves forward as research subjects!

ZoomZoomZoom said:
and from nurture (there are born geniuses, but apart from that, i think i would have turned out pretty stupid if i were born in a 3rd world country to rice farmers).
I'm not sure I like the suggestion that being poor = being stupid. You may find that the third-world subsistence farmer requires a set of skills and resourceful intelligence to survive that is more often lost in rich parts of the world...

Having said that, of course environmental factors - nutrition, education etc. - play an important role, as does genetics. But these are complex correlations. Nothing is ever a simple as "tall=smart, poor=stupid".
 

bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
13,979
3
Gone but not forgotten.
Jaffa Cake said:
Yep, that just about covers it thanks. :D
The air really is thinner up there, isn't it? :p Hope you don't pass out from the lack of oxygen.

Note that the study only mentions the U.K. and the U.S.A. I wonder how often tall people are smarter in Asia. :D
 

MacRy

macrumors 601
Apr 2, 2004
4,255
4,999
England
bousozoku said:
The air really is thinner up there, isn't it? :p Hope you don't pass out from the lack of oxygen.
Oh dear, I sense short bloke syndrome. I realise that last word was polysyllabic but maybe you can get a tall person to explain it to you :)
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,922
168
That explains my mental lethargy when faced with work.

I used to be 5"7' (just over 170cm)about 20 years ago but when last measured at the hospital, I was just under 5"6.5 (about 169cm).

I'mmmmm shrinnnnkinnnng.... :eek:
 

xsedrinam

macrumors 601
Oct 21, 2004
4,347
1
Well this has not been a good week for little people, places and things, has it? Even Pluto gets snuffed for being too small. Somehow tapping only the UK and U.S., and coming out with any type of result, seems rather short sighted in terms of scope. Will we continue to be vexed by a glut of studies from all the M.A. and PhD candidate's thesis? At this rate, small states like Rhode Island should be looking over their shoulder in order to preempt cessation without representation.