The long undisputed fact that tall people make more money on average in the work force than those of a shorter stature has been met with an interesting possible reason, tall people are indeed smarter, according to a new study from researchers at
PrincetonUniversity . Although this assertion still begs the question why, an in-depth look into a recent study provides some interesting insights.
Genetics not school work?
“As early as age 3 – before schooling has had a chance to play a role -and throughout childhood, taller children perform significantly better on cognitive tests,” wrote researchers Christina Paxton and Anne Case in their study. Their analysis suggests that tall people are smarter from what amounts to birth, but the reason for this advantage is unknown.
Multiple Studies Utilized
Anne and Christina compiled their research based nearly exclusively on two studies which tracked children born in 1958 and 1970 as well as another study in the
which complied statistics monitoring, among other statistics, the height and occupation choice of test subjects. Less scientific theories for lower pay for lower people include the low self esteem which may be associated in comparison to tall counterparts as well as the better health of their taller coworkers.
Importance of Prenatal Care Emphasized
The paper did not go as far as to say that simply being tall would make you a smarter person. It stressed the importance of good prenatal care as well as good infant nutrition between birth and the age of three, a time period already known for its importance to future development. Nutritional needs during a child’s first three years are greatest to correspond with its immense growth during this time period. Somewhere within this growth lies the key to determining just what factor, if any at all, leads to the increased intelligence of taller people over those of shorter stature.
More Questions Raised
Future studies may be able to delve deeper into this topic by analyzing just why tall people are smarter and whether their increased relative growth as a youth may lead to greater brain function. Studies will need to analyze a great number of factors before anything can become definitely clear. Some topics of interest will include the analysis of the brain size of taller people, the speed of brain development between taller and shorter people, and whether there is a ratio of average intelligence based upon your height. This study is just the first brick of a long road to find answers to the question everyone wants to know, are taller people indeed smarter?