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Spearman’s hypothesis tested at the level of items states that differences between ethnic groups on the items of an IQ test are a function of the g loadings of these items, such that there are small differences between ethnic groups on items with low g loadings and large differences between ethnic groups on items with high g loadings; this has been confirmed in a limited number of studies. In this paper, Spearman’s hypothesis was tested, comparing a group of Saudi children and adolescents (N=3209) with other groups of children and adolescents from Denmark, Cyprus, Croatia, Bosnia, South Africa, Estonia, Ukraine, Ireland, Russia and Chile (total N=9333). The analyses were carried out on twelve comparisons between the Saudi Arabian children and the other children. Spearman’s hypothesis was confirmed less strongly than in other large-scale studies with a mean weighted r value of 0.44. The relevance of these findings for the discussion on the causes of group differences is discussed.
Although Van de Vliert presented an entertaining story containing several original observations, an implicit assumption that climate affects human society identically through the history is not realistic. If almost everything is explained by cold winters or hot summers, then nothing is explained. Ignoring rival explanations does not make the proposed theory more convincing.
The Standard Progressive Matrices test was standardized in Estonia on a representative sample of 4874 schoolchildren aged from 7 to 19 years. When the IQ of Estonian children was expressed in relation to British and Icelandic norms, both demonstrated a similar sigmoid relationship. The youngest Estonian group scored higher than the British and Icelandic norms: after first grade, the score fell below 100 and remained lower until age 12, and after that age it increased above the mean level of these two comparison countries. The difference between the junior school children and the secondary school children may be due to schooling, sampling error or different trajectories of intellectual maturation in different populations. Systematic differences in the growth pattern suggest that the development of intellectual capacities proceeds at different rates and the maturation process can take longer in some populations than in others.
The target article differentiates a new, syntactic component
in verbal working memory. We suggest that several more components
could be differentiated to make a model of working memory complete.
Next, syntax is not always separable from the subject's verbal
memory capacity as measured by standard working memory tasks. Finally,
interference between different processes cannot be taken as evidence
for the processes sharing the same resources. Interference might be a
result of active mutual inhibition.
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