Friday, November 08, 2013

Motor exploration of 5-month old predicts academic achievement at 14 years.

A fascinating part of these observations is the lack of correlation noted in the last sentence of the abstract:. From Bornstein et al.:
A developmental cascade defines a longitudinal relation in which one psychological characteristic uniquely affects another psychological characteristic later in time, separately from other intrapersonal and extrapersonal factors. Here, we report results of a large-scale (N = 374), normative, prospective, 14-year longitudinal, multivariate, multisource, controlled study of a developmental cascade from infant motor-exploratory competence at 5 months to adolescent academic achievement at 14 years, through conceptually related and age-appropriate measures of psychometric intelligence at 4 and 10 years and academic achievement at 10 years. This developmental cascade applied equally to girls and boys and was independent of children’s behavioral adjustment and social competence; mothers’ supportive caregiving, verbal intelligence, education, and parenting knowledge; and the material home environment. Infants who were more motorically mature and who explored more actively at 5 months of age achieved higher academic levels as 14-year-olds.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous5:20 PM

    It seems to go against the Rushtonian theory of linking non-Asian races', specially Africans', earlier development of motor coordination with a trade-off of cognitive development. African racial supremacists simply interpret that the other way around, seeing it more isolatedly and under a positive light ("develop faster"). There's either the suggestion or explicit notion of a spectrum of chimp-ness--human-ness. There's some research showing things that are quite surprising, like babies of different races having markedly different reflexes, like Asian/japanese babies simply not reacting when a person holds his/her breath, and also not tending to raise his/her head (as much) when the baby is placed laid over his/her own tummy. I've read some stuff suggesting that at least at a later stage it would be more developmental than innate, perhaps that also applies to the babies, though.