Achievement viewed through a genetic lens

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Science  27 Feb 2015:
Vol. 347, Issue 6225, pp. 961
DOI: 10.1126/science.347.6225.961-f

Why is educational achievement so highly heritable? To investigate, Krapohl et al. used a multivariate analysis to determine how nine broad domains of educational achievement, including intelligence, self-efficacy, personality, well-being, parent-rated behavior problems, child-rated behavior problems, health, perceived school environment, and home environment, contributed to the performance of 6653 pairs of twins on a nationwide exam administered in the United Kingdom at age 16. Results showed that although intelligence was the dominant domain, the other eight domains collectively influenced the heritability of educational achievement at a level equivalent to that of intelligence alone. These results demonstrate that a wide array of heritable factors contributes to academic achievement.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 111, 42 (2014).

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