What Is the Meaning of Blacks Closing the Achievement Gap in the UK?

Tulio: So then the race IQ gap is environmental then?

Well, I don’t know. Chuck at The Inductivist now says it is, and he is fighting with a bunch of hereditarians about that. And Chuck was originally a hereditarian.
The achievement gap may well be environmental if the British Blacks closed it. They say the achievement tests are a proxy for IQ, but they are not a perfect proxy, maybe .7 correlation. It might be interesting to see recent IQ tests.
in the case of British Black children, yes, their IQ’s beat White children at age 5 incredibly enough, but they crash back down to 86 when those children reach adulthood. A similar thing is happening in the US, where Black children now have an IQ of 90.5, but their IQ crashes back down to ~85 by adulthood.
There are a lot of theories about why this is happening, but one of the most depressing is that environmental effects are most prominent in youth, and that in adulthood, the genes start to kick in, and environmental effects fade into the background.
If we could close the achievement gap in the US like they did in the UK, it would be an awesome thing indeed. It would be one of the greatest achievements for Black Americans since the First or Second Liberations (Civil War and Civil Rights Act).
However, Black children in both the UK and the US are getting a lot smarter, and both cohorts are significantly closing the B-W IQ gap at least in childhood. I think smarter Black kids is a good thing in a lot of ways. You can sit back and count the ways that this is a good thing, but I think we both agree that it’s a huge positive.

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14 thoughts on “What Is the Meaning of Blacks Closing the Achievement Gap in the UK?”

  1. “but they crash back down to 86 when those children reach adulthood.”
    The current data doesn’t really support this. Lynn’s 86 figure is old and came from smaller samples (and some of Lynn’s figures have been unreliable in the past). The achievement test data (since they correlate very well with IQ) suggest otherwise. UK Achievement tests correlate very closely with IQ tests taken at the same age. At age 11 uk Black childrens’ scores on both iq and achievement are only about one half an SD (or less) lower than the White average. In high school (when achievement scores are especially g-loaded and correlate with IQ, achievement scores for blacks (in certain Black ethnic groups) actually rise somewhat. It could perhaps be, in part, that Black (and South Asian) children’s scores rise as they get older and thus become more assimilated into mainstream British culture.
    As I posted in an older post:
    “The Ethnic gaps (across the key stages) on the in the achievement tests do not tend to show a gradual widening but rather seem to narrow with age if anything.
    “”Minority Ethnic Pupils in the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England
    Extension Report on Performance in Public Examinations at Age 16
    Dr Steve Strand”
    http://dera.ioe.ac.uk/7916/1/DCSF-RR029.pdf
    “Some gaps change very little. For example the relative gap associated with social class, mother’s educational qualifications and entitlement to a FSM did not change substantially over the three time points. Other gaps did show substantial change. For example the gender gap increases significantly, from less than 0.07 SD at KS2 to 0.23 SD by the end of KS4, with the largest shift occurring between KS3 and KS4. The gaps for some ethnic groups decrease substantially, for example Pakistani, Bangladeshi and Black African mean scores were significantly below the White British mean at KS2 and KS3 but these gaps narrowed to less than 0.1 SD by the end of KS4, again with the big change happening during KS4.”(Steve Strand)
    The GCSE key stage 4 (high school) scores are taken around the age of sixteen but. The iq scores given are from a younger age group (11) and more closely match Group performances at the same age GCSE evaluation stage (Key stage 2)””
    https://robertlindsay.wordpress.com/2015/11/04/uk-blacks-now-matching-uk-whites-on-achievement-tests/
    I’m not sure Blacks really generally outscore White children at 5 (what study is that from? Is it from the Tizzard study by any chance (because they outscored Whites by 5-6 pints in that study)? Because in that one the Black children had been either adopted by whites or raised in the same environment (groups homes I think) and by Whites—thus they were not in typical circumstances for Black children; they would have in that sample/study had a very different environment than normal.
    From what I have seen (and Chuck discussed at his old blog) the early childhood (age 5 or so) IQ scores of Black (and Indian/Pakistani) children in the uk are somewhat lower (lower—sometimes significantly—than those of Whites), but they rise somewhat with age, toward late adolescence (and at every stage the iq scores correlate with the achievement evaluation (“KS”, as described above) phases—I believe they were somewhat higher at 11 than at 5 for Black Caribbeans.
    (but its always good to have the most recent data, and things can be somewhat different for all ethnic groups in the most recent years)
    I don’t think there is IQ data from the same age the high school achievement scores are from (but as you mentioned—and psychometrician Ian Deary found in his studies—the test correlates closely to iq and g, and is probably a good proxy), but the iq scores correlate very closely to the achievement data at the other ages (as Chuck found and discussed at his blog, though unfortunately the blog is now private) so they would likely be expected to do so for high school as well.

    1. Edit: “At age 11 uk Black childrens’ scores on both iq and achievement are only about one half an SD (or less) lower than the White average (and at earlier ages, for some minorities, they are lower than that). In high school (when achievement scores are especially g-loaded and correlate with IQ, achievement scores for blacks (in certain Black ethnic groups) actually rise somewhat.”

    2. Edit: “…g, and is probably a good proxy), but the iq scores correlate very closely to the achievement data at the other ages (as Chuck found and discussed at his blog, though unfortunately the blog is now private) so they would be expected to do so for high school as well. (and another achievement test with a similar iq-correlation, the SAT, tracks with group iq performance in the US.)”

    3. “It could perhaps be, in part, that Black (and South Asian) children’s scores rise as they get older and thus become more assimilated into mainstream British culture. (In the US, many Blacks never really or fully assimilate into the mainstream culture, but remain ghettoized/maintain a ghettoized culture, culturally if not geographically/physically)”

      1. Why is that in quotes?
        I dunno, Jamaican Blacks in the UK have a ghetto type culture too. There is a whole music scene around it. It’s a shitty scene with a lot of very bad behavior, violence, etc. It’s some real crap.

        1. “Why is that in quotes?”
          The part in the longer post in quotes is where I quote what I wrote earlier on another occasion in another thread (at the link)—and within that quote I had quoted Steve Strand. There other quotes in the smaller posts here were me editing myself (which is I do too often, and will have to proofread more thoroughly as I often make nervous omissions and mistakes).
          “I dunno, Jamaican Blacks have a ghetto type culture too. There is a whole music scene around it. It’s a shitty scene with a lot of very bad behavior, violence, etc. It’s some real crap.”
          True, and there is some of that among some of the Jamaicans in the UK (there are other Black Caribbean groups there like Barbadians and Trinidadians, but I think the Jamaicans may be the largest Caribbean group there). But there does generally seem to be more cultural integration and assimilation among Blacks (including Caribbean) in Britain than in the US (there were historically fewer barriers to that like there were here), and some are pretty assimilated. From what I have read anyway, there is also a fairly dysfunctional lower class White culture among parts of the White poor class in parts of the UK as well, but I’m unsure of the extent of that.

        2. Oh I am sorry. I was referring to Jamaican Blacks in the UK, not in Jamaica. I don’t care about the ones in the Caribbean. The Caribbean will be screwed up forever.
          It is called chav culture and it’s some real crap all right. There’s a particularly awful version of it in Scotland, where it is associated with heavy drug use, especially opiates and heroin. It’s associated with the housing estates. However, they don’t commit a tremendous amount of crime, and the homicide rate is quite low. They are just these drugged out, drunken, slutty scumbags if you ask me.

  2. Can you provide a link to where chuck talks about this?
    I assume this is the same chuck who wrote ‘the facts that need to be explained’ about the B/W IQ gap and later closed his blog and went to human varieties?
    I discussed this with him once and he was looking into test scores in Britain. I’m glad to see he’s made progress.

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