Height and Intelligence?

I found this https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Height_and_intelligence

Im 186 cm tall. Does this means people shorter are less intelligent according to the article?


Probably on average but not always.

Albert Einstein was 175 centimeters. Isaac Newton was just 5 feet 6 inches (164/165 centimeters). Many very intelligent people where short. Even brain size doesn’t always matter. Albert Einstein’s brain was smaller than average.


Statistically. That means that if 33% is just as intelligent, 33% is more intelligent and 34% is less intelligent than you, shorter people are statistically less intelligent.

But then again, intelligence itself is a huge point of debate.

However, that is not my problem with the article as it is. I skimmed over it, but I saw no specifics. I am dutch, we are statistically the tallest people in the world, would that also mean that we are the most intelligent? I sure hope not because that would not be very good for all other countries. We have some pieces of pure dung walking around here.

Also what are we talking about here, is it accurate on a single IQ point? Did it measure on the 10 IQ point range? Is it measured by viewing lengths of people at IQs of <80, 80-130 and >130? What kind of IQ test are we talking about? Did they also correlate against the average lengths of peers?


I dont believe intelligence can really be measured with tests. If yes, then Im really below average and shorters than me can be more intelligent.


The country with the highest IQ is Japan, if I recall correctly. The netherlands’s average IQ is higher than most countries but not close to the top 3.

Also, the average height of dutch people is expected to go down because of immigration and more foreign food.


Nope. It means that some studies were conducted and they gave some results in trials which may not be led by standards.

I’m pharmacist by trade, so search for ‘Practolol and patient-years’ - this medicine was used in 200,000 patient years (meaning 200,000 patients took chronically for one year or 20,000 patients for a 10 years, under regular monitoring of side-effects). Some ugly side-effects, rare or not-so, were discovered only AFTER that).

Now hydrochlorthizine, under a study of group of ‘Danish medical researchers’ is ‘proven’ to increase risk of some types of melanoma. Wait. It’s in use and constant monitoring for over 50 years and is the most common diuretic. Billions patient-years, easily. No connection to melanoma, until… It happens, but none sane can claim that limited size trial can trump that. Further study, sure. Claim direct connection - nope.

By the way, do you drink cow milk or coconut some or other replacement? If you drink cow milk, than you’re 5cm height-er than if you’re not - therefore one more reason to switch to cow milk. According to 20,000 persons surveyed in study sponosored by American Livestock Association… (one of a kind research, of course)

So, switch immediately to cow milk, or thank your parents for not giving you any ‘healthier’ alternative which would turn you into a midget, both in height and intellect :):grin:

Little fun, but data and clinical trials are, sadly, often misused…


That is indeed why I mentioned it, we are not the most intelligent country just because we are the tallest. I was not aware of that being Japan, but either way it would seem that the height and intelligence connection has at least some flaws in how it was concluded then.


Or deliberately change the words used to change the impact of the same message.

Some time ago a university mentioned that 8.000 people got sick nation wide after eating chicken the past week in an article to show how easy it is to play with numbers and words. Big news, chicken is dangerous. Until you realize that 8000 people is 0.05% of the chicken eaters in the country and there is zero reason to assume the chicken caused it.

In other news! Dihydrogenmonoxide has been found in almost all of our food, it causes sweating, increase of urination and if you consume enough of it, it puts you at great risk of death as it builds up in your brain and increases the pressure on it. Unfortunately, we have gotten so dependant of it that we will die if we stop consuming dihydrogenmonoxide for as little as 3 days.


Height depends on many factors and so does intelligence. If you want to find correlation s, you will.

It is called cognitive bias and many scientists have fallen into that trap and still do today but thank fully Less and less. Anyone can make a study and make it look like just the opposite : smaller people… Remember eugenics and all the bogus science behind it. Wikipedia will have an article on that to. PS aren’t there many forms of intelligence? And the method to measure them are constantly being dissapproven as being big grey areas BIG.

Small people are more often more intelligent than tall people but it’s not because they are small.

Tall people are more often more intelligent than small people but it’s not because they are tall.

Prove that wrong.

PPS. I admit I did not expect to see such a thread here


It depends on what you view as intelligence. As far as I know, a solid definition for “intelligence” is hard to find, some define it as being rationally capable while others say it is being able to effectively process a certain kind of information, which is why people turned to the “many types of intelligence” argument.

In the end, the definition of intelligence changes based on how many people you are willing to insult.


5cm?! But I am the tiniest tiny to have ever tined. If I am 5cm smarter than you, that puts you at -4cm smartness :worried:


correlation, causation, statistics.

brain size, nutrition in developmental years, general health, distance from the ground.
I remember doing some multi-variate analysis in University and even on simple surveys, this can get very complex. I would think that there would be weak correlations between height and intelligence over a long period study as increasing height has been a function of improved nutrition and likely care of parents. BUT I also “suspect” that if the improved nutrition was removed you would have a tough time finding any correlations between the two. You can find statistically significant factors but height and brain size are surprisingly weak on the list of items to check for.

I am told that Americans are getting shorter and this would explain the orange man but again it is likely only a correlation.


I just looked it up and Singapore has the highest average IQ in 2019. Japan is in most lists 3rd in the world.

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No, it does not mean that shorter people are less intelligent. It means that on average shorter people are less intelligent. With just that information all you can say about one person, is that if you knew nothing else about him other than that he is short, the best bet would be that his IQ is below that of the average IQ for a tall person.

Averages by themselves are not much information. What’s the average age in your country? How old are you? What’s the average income? What’s your’s?

The missing piece of information is the variance, the degree to which results are tightly clustered around the mean or dispersed. A die lands, with uniform probability on each of its six faces. Knowing that the average value of a roll is 3-1/2 gives you no advantage. 3 or 4 is no more likely than six. The possible outcomes of a die roll do not cluster around the mean, hence the mean value is no use as a predictor.

If you buy a 1 meter rule, you also have an average value. No individual rule came off the production line exactly to a meter. But they all came very close. They are very tightly clustered around the mean value of 1 meter. The Quality Control will check both the average value and the variance. If the variance is too high, the production line needs attention. There you can use the average value of 1m as if it were exact. In that case one can say all the meter rules on the shelf in the hardware store are 1m long, with strong confidence


That changes though once you start taking the sum of two dice. :wink:

Just kidding… totally agree with you. The problem basically starts with journalist that don’t know much about mean and standard deviation (or statistics in general); making claims in their articles that are then taken as fact by some.

Probably a fair bit of survivorship bias in that number though


Survivorship bias from what? I don’t get it.

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Averages are not applicable in everything but that doesn’t mean there is no place for averages.

The average adult human has 1 testicle and 1 breast but you know beforehand that wondering about the typical human would lead to some ridiculous and useless averages like these, you just should’ve been more precise with what you wanted to estimate.


Haha. Very dangerous stuff.


It’s not like 5 million people in Singapore had to take the test; hence only the ones that took the test are included in this score. Next question then… who takes this kind of test.


An extreme example is when a distribution is ‘bimodal’ - has two or more peaks. Suppose we have a Tall population (T) and a Short population ()

S average IQ is 98 and 95% of the population is within 3 points of the average.

T average IQ is 102 half the population are genius IQ say around 145, the other half severely ‘challenged’ around 70.

If you had to hire someone and all you could know was that he was from group T or S it’s by no means clear that you should prefer T because that group has a higher average IQ. In fact there’s about an even chance that hiring from the S group will get you a smarter employee.

This is just one example where average values are misleading or irrelevant.