Order of Birth, Parent-Age, and Intelligence

Order of Birth, Parent-Age, and Intelligence

Order of Birth, Parent-Age, and Intelligence

Order of Birth, Parent-Age, and Intelligence

Excerpt

This investigation of the relation between the order of birth and the intelligence of children as well as a number of related questions has been carried out on data collected at the Institute for Juvenile Research. A large part of the work was carried out under the auspices of the Behavior Research Fund, and it was completed by some work under the auspices of the Local Community Research Committee of the University of Chicago. The first part is an analysis of our own data, and the second part, for which Dr. Jenkins is chiefly responsible, is a summary of the literature on this and closely related problems. The first part of this study is the work of both authors.

The conclusions of this investigation, which indicate a steadily increasing advantage in intelligence in favor of the later-born children, are based upon the Institute population of children. These children come to the Institute usually for some behavior problem, and their mean intelligence quotient is in the vicinity of .80. Although the mean intelligence of our population is lower than the average for the general population, we have seen no very good reason to suspect that this fact would in any way influence our main problem. We have been interested in the relative intelligence of the first-born, the second-born, and the third-born child in each family rather than in the mean intelligence of the whole population. However, a parallel study has been carried out by Miss Minnie Steckel for a large sample of children in the Sioux City public schools. That study has been carried out along lines similar to ours so that the results on a large normal population may be compared with our results for a retarded population.

We wish to acknowledge the interest and assistance of Dr. Herman Adler, who has made available the Institute records for this investigation and other facilities at the Institute for Juvenile Research. The expense of the study was also shared by the Behavior Research Fund of Chicago and by the Local Community Research Committee of the University of Chicago.

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