Rolling Triggers and Social Multipliers Explain the Flynn Effect

The most potent facet of our environment is other people. When something, perhaps the popularity basketball got from television, triggered greater participation in basketball, the average performance rose as individuals played more and got better. Initially, a few people learn to shoot with either hand, then others imitate them. The rise in average performance feeds back into a new challenge for each individual. Those who want to excel have to learn to pass with either hand and this spreads and raises the average performance once again. In other words, every rise in individual performance raises the group average, which forces everyone to raise their individual performance a notch higher, which raises the group average a notch higher, and so on. Even a modest environmental trigger of enhanced performance can become potent by seizing control of the social multiplier—and cause huge performance gains in a relatively short time.

The same kind of reciprocal causation explains IQ gains. Environmental triggers raise the cognitive demands of work, family interaction, leisure, and everyday conversation. Those who respond by upgrading their cognitive performance raise the average cognitive performance. Then the rising average affects your employer, family, and friends and they demand or expect more, and you (and many others) rise to meet their expectations, so the average cognitive performance jumps once again, and so on, and so on. The model quantifies this process and shows that quite plausible initial environmental changes would be enough to explain huge IQ gains—gains of 20 points over a single generation.


Folksonomies: intelligence iq g-factor flynn effect

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Intelligence (0.970219): dbpedia | freebase
Flynn effect (0.925368): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Environment (0.886873): dbpedia
James R. Flynn (0.849864): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Intelligence quotient (0.814883): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Richard Lynn (0.742796): website | dbpedia | freebase | yago
General intelligence factor (0.690353): dbpedia
Environmental factor (0.520828): dbpedia | freebase

 Heritability Estimates Versus Large Environmental Effects: The IQ Paradox Resolved
Periodicals>Journal Article:  Flynn, James R. and Dickens, William T. (2001/04/01), Heritability Estimates Versus Large Environmental Effects: The IQ Paradox Resolved, Brookings Institution, Retrieved on 2015-05-26
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: education intelligence social policy defense and security inequality


    26 MAY 2015

     The <em>g</em>-factor Paradox

    If IQ is heavily influenced by genes, then how do we explain the Flynn effect? Either we are improperly quantifying g or improperly measuring environmental factors.
    Folksonomies: intelligence iq g-factor
    Folksonomies: intelligence iq g-factor