Firstborn children score higher on intelligence

Being the oldest, the smallest or the medium in the birth order among brothers It has an impact on the intelligence of the person. Until now it was thought that the chronological order at birth had more to do with emotional issues, but now a study has linked the Intelligence score with the firstborn.

For more than 100 years, the scientific community and the general public have questioned whether a person's position among their siblings had a lasting impact on that person's life. The fact that almost half of the Nobel Prizes have been the elder brother or the firstborn, something that has also happened with more than half of the presidents of the United States, while the artistic sense of the great literati, painters or Successful people in show business being in the hands of little brothers has created much expectation and curiosity.


The firstborn sons take note in intelligence

Now a study, conducted by psychologists at the University of Leipzig in Germany, which has been published in the journal PNAS, and which has combined large data sets from three national panels, has confirmed that the firstborn score higher in intelligence and, in addition, it has found a similar effect in the self-report intellect. The study was conducted with data from more than 20,000 people in the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany.

However, contrary to what scientific theories and previous beliefs advocated, no effects have been found in the order of birth on extraversion, emotional stability, kindness, responsibility or imagination. This finding indicates that the development of the personality is less determined by the role within the family of origin than was previously thought.


This new empirical research on the relationship between birth order and intelligence has documented that the performances in the psychometric intelligence tests slightly decrease from the firstborn to the later born. On the contrary, the search for birth effects of order on personality has not yet led to conclusive results. The analysis confirms the expected order of birth effect on intelligence. There is also a significant decrease of one-tenth of an SD card in the intellect self-report with the increase in the position of birth order.

Birth order does not affect emotions

The most important thing, however, is that no order of birth effect has been found on extroversion, emotional stability, kindness, responsibility or imagination. Therefore, according to this study, birth order does not have a lasting effect on broad personality traits outside the intellectual domain.


The age of the parents has also been studied as a possible variable within the effects on intelligence and intellect. For example, a higher paternal age at conception carries the risk of a greater number of new genetic mutations that could decrease intelligence in later births. However, the results suggest that the age of the parents is not the driving force behind the effects on intelligence and intellect.

Marisol Nuevo Espín

Video: HOW BIRTH ORDER CAN SHAPE YOUR PERSONALITY ?!


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