Does birth order matter?

A new research study has announced that firstborn’s IQs tend to be higher than those of their younger siblings. But is this study universal? Let us know what you think!


10 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Agnes C. said,

    this article is one of the worst pieces I have ever read!! There are no facts; it is totally contrived and filled with myths and possibilities. Where is the journalism? Where is the insight ? Please, a 10th grader could have submitted a better article.
    Youngest children are slackers and lazy? What an insult!! You are creating stereotypes. All of us are individuals. Each person makes and created his or her own life. Writing as a first born child of four, I see none of these “prototypes” in my siblings. All of us have strong personalities and opinions. The youngest is in medical school.
    Second point, the authoe admits this is a flawed study, only examining a male population. So, why are you giivig it any validity? It is a skewed study. This is where the journalism is laking. I feel you are giving it a “review”. Journalism is to enlighten. Does this writer even have anytype of science education? Otherwise you would know you could consider this JUNK SCIENCE.

  2. 2

    Kelly said,

    This study is correlational, which means that a higher birth order DOES NOT CAUSE a higher IQ. Also, IQ scores of 103 and 101 are well within the average range.

  3. 3

    scott47 said,

    Wow, I don’t know. I know my sister was the first born and she is very smart. But my older brother and I are pretty even. Interesting find

  4. 4

    Aw, com’on, Agnes, it wasn’t that bad. The study may have been flawed but if it helps us think outside the box that’s good, isn’t it? When you get vehement against ideas it’s a pretty good indication you are in a box where you have to defend what you believe. Never get so interested in believing that you forget to think.

    The study was good that it identified the first, second and third born rather than oldest, middle and youngest. Information such as age difference, sex of the siblings and birth order of parents could have brought out some interesting facts but probably was not available. In my experience, when the oldest child has the personality of a third born without the older siblings that child would have an exceptionally high IQ – in the range of 135 to 185. Otherwise, I do not see the oldest child having a much higher IQ than the others.

  5. 5

    My blog did not get included. It is

  6. 6

    rsq said,

    What a silly article. To begin with, it’s predicated on the idea that families have three or more children. So if I only have two, what is my younger child? A “youngest” with all the generalizations attached to her, or a “middle” who just never got the chance to be a big sister? My son and I are both “oldests” and are two of the most disorganized, laid-back people you’ll ever find.

    It seems like the whole piece was a thinly veiled plug to links to

  7. 7

    Alex Ambrioso said,

    As Kellie said in a comment on 10/12, this study is correlational. There may be other factors causing the IQ differences. For example, consider the follwing. Firstborn children are more likely to come from small famiilies since they will comprise a larger portion of the small families than they will of the large families. The IQ differnece may the the result of the socio-economic differences associated with small as opposed to large familieis. Or, more simply, a result of the IQ’s of parents who choose to have smaller familiies. Without a more careful analyisis of the study, the broad generaliizations made in the article are unwarranted. See Harris’ “The Nuture Assumption” for more insight into personality development.

  8. 8

    CR said,

    Since there are no scientific facts and thsi study was done only among male siblings and no studies among very large families, I see absolutely no evidence of truth in this fable.

    How do they explain more successful and smarter younger siblings?
    In fact, my youngest has an IQ of 127, while the other two are of average intelligence. BTW- the average IQ ranges from 100-110.

  9. 9

    Jane said,

    I am a 3rd child and the proud owner of a 152 IQ…………go figure.

  10. 10

    McCoppin said,

    Great comments. A few things to realise:

    This like any study is a study. not an absolution. The trend is for first born males to have higher IQ, it does not mean that all first borns do, its just a trend from their study. There are always exceptions to any study.

    Some comments refer to behavioral (ie. habits, cleanliness, organization, etc.) and not to IQ. Very gifted people can themselves be lazy, neurotic, or disorganized. IQ is only a measurement of capacity for Intelligence, not actual use.

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