Science Says We're Getting Dubmer... Sorry, More Stupid
A new study out of Norway has seen an alarming dip in our IQs.
If you have never heard of the Flynn effect then it's not actually going to matter much anyway now, and quite frankly we shouldn't be mentioning it. You see, the effect -- that the human race were getting measurably smarter -- is now null and void. We ain't anymore.
In fact, according to science, we're actually getting dumber. And while we used to be adding around three IQ points per decade, now it seems that trend is actively reversing.
Scientists from Norway's Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research analysed 730,000 IQ tests given to Norwegian men before their compulsory military service from 1970 to 2009, and what they found was that average IQ scores were actually sinking. Each generation of Norwegian men appears to be getting around seven IQ points dumber.
But why? Well, that's the tricky part -- it's hard to know (and not just because we're stupid, OK?)
It doesn't seem to be genetic. Even within single families, it seems that IQ has declined. Instead, it seems to be environmental. But scientists are still baffled as to what exact aspect of modern life is driving the decline. Given that the decline in our IQ started in the 1970s, we can't even blame it on smartphones and Facebook.
And no, before you ask, it's not just Norway, either.
Some experts are suggesting that what we're eating has something to do with it -- and there is no denying our love of fast food and junk, right? Then there's trashy media and reality TV, and the lack of good old-fashioned reading as we turn to social media and have constant access to our tablets.
Then there is a theory about how languages and maths are being taught differently and how IQ tests measure what and how we've learnt them. You see The Times points out that scientists make a distinction between crystallized intelligence (all the stuff you've been taught) and fluid intelligence (your ability to learn). IQ tests generally measure crystallized intelligence more, so changes in schooling might be driving a decline in scores.
So, in conclusion, well, there is no actual conclusion.
The study authors say "…our results remain consistent with a number of proposed hypotheses of IQ decline: changes in educational exposure or quality, changing media exposure, worsening nutrition or health…" which basically means, we're just all guilty of making ourselves stupider.
Or is that more stupid.? We're too stupid to know.
Feature Image: New Line Cinema