Thursday, January 01, 2009

Babies Born in Winter Months Are Less Intelligent?

In a 12/22/08 article in USA Today Rita Rubin described new research that suggests, on average, that winter babies grow up to be less educated, less intelligent, less healthy and lower paid than people born in the spring. Many of the reader comments were from people projecting (and rejecting) this research based on their own lives and those of their children or siblings.

Click here to read the article.

Here are my comments which I posted to the USA Today website:

This is interesting research that reminds me of the family size and intelligence debate. As family size increases, intelligence of children tends to decrease. Researchers found that it is not that more kids means less time and money to educate kids, rather that lower IQ parents tend to have larger families.

Also, can everyone who is angry at this research study please remember that correlation is not causation. You've heard it many times; that's because it's true.
If this same data for birth month are analyzed for day of the week and it shows that Tuesday babies have the highest IQ, would you tell your doctor to schedule a c-section for Tuesday?

And if the data show that the smartest babies were born between 3 and 6am, and your water breaks at 3 pm, do you tell your Ob/Gyn to put on the brakes for 12 hours? Clearly not. It's just some interesting research; not to worry.