Tuesday, March 31, 2015
More scientific brains fried by political correctness
One hopes that the authors below knew what was really going on in their data but they show no sign of it. Their basic finding is that kids from rich families have bigger brains -- and they claim that wealth somehow has a direct effect on brain size. Researcher Dr Kimberley Noble is quoted as saying:
"The brain is the product of both genetics and experience and experience is particularly powerful in moulding brain development in childhood. This suggests that interventions to improve socioeconomic circumstance, family life and/or educational opportunity can make a vast difference."
It does nothing of the sort. What is being ignored is that naughty IQ again. The findings were entirely predictable from what we have long known about IQ. IQ is both hereditary, tends to be higher among successful people and is associated with larger brain size. All that the stupid woman has discovered is the old old fact that IQ is hereditary. And no "interventions" will change that
Family income, parental education and brain structure in children and adolescents
By Kimberly G Noble et al.
Socioeconomic disparities are associated with differences in cognitive development. The extent to which this translates to disparities in brain structure is unclear. We investigated relationships between socioeconomic factors and brain morphometry, independently of genetic ancestry, among a cohort of 1,099 typically developing individuals between 3 and 20 years of age. Income was logarithmically associated with brain surface area.
Among children from lower income families, small differences in income were associated with relatively large differences in surface area, whereas, among children from higher income families, similar income increments were associated with smaller differences in surface area.
These relationships were most prominent in regions supporting language, reading, executive functions and spatial skills; surface area mediated socioeconomic differences in certain neurocognitive abilities. These data imply that income relates most strongly to brain structure among the most disadvantaged children.
Nature Neuroscience, 2015
Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).