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Arthur R. Jensen on Genetic Variation - Dictionary of Arguments

Slater I 121
Genetic Variation/intelligence/Jensen: Jensen (1969)(1): Jensen reported addressing the question [of racial test score differences] in discussions with geneticists. They were, he claimed, consistent in agreeing that races can be defined technically as populations having different distributions of gene frequencies, and that genetic differences among races are manifested in virtually all anatomical, physiological, and biochemical comparison, that had been made to date, which were then primarily of blood constituents.
The geneticists Jensen spoke with also apparently agreed that any behavior that was measurable and heritable would show racial differences in the frequencies of the genes involved in the same ways as any other human characteristic.
Slater I 122
They stressed that survival or adaptive advantage associated with the differences was not necessary. Jensen (1969) next accurately recounted the extent of the then-typical difference between African- and European-Americans on measures of intelligence and academic achievement at about one standard deviation, which meant that only 15% of the African-American population exceeded the average in the European-American population.
He also reported that variance in intelligence test scores in the African-American population was about 60% of that in the European-American population, thus making the two distributions quite different in their defining parameters.
He noted that, though the possibility that this difference in distribution was at least partly genetically determined had been strongly denounced, it had not been contradicted or discredited empirically. This meant, to him, that the evidence supporting the idea should be reviewed and its implications for education considered. >Heritability/Jensen, >Intelligence/Jensen.
Johnson: The evidence [Jensen] presented stands to this day.


1. Jensen, A. R. (1969). How much can we boost IQ and scholastic achievement? Harvard Educational Review, 3, 1–123.


Wendy Johnson: „How Much Can We Boost IQ? Updated Look at Jensen’s (1969) Question and Answer“, in: Alan M. Slater & Paul C. Quinn (eds.) 2012. Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies. London: Sage Publications


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Jensen, Arthur R.
Slater I
Alan M. Slater
Paul C. Quinn
Developmental Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies London 2012


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