Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Homosexuality and math

Are straight guys better at math than gay guys?  Are lesbians better than hetero females?  The Add Health Study asked teens what grade they earned in math last term. A's were assigned a 4, B's a 3, C's a 2, and D's or lower a 1.  Here are the means:

Mean math score (sample size = 5,863)

Straight males 2.60
Gay males 2.30*
Straight females 2.75
Lesbians  2.67

*significantly lower than straight guys

While lesbians basically earn the same average math grade as heterosexuals, gay guys don't perform as well.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'd be much more interested in a different measure than high school grades since, at that age, gay males might be more alienated from the overall high school experience than straight males.

However, lacking something else for a comparison (like SAT math scores) do this...add to your comparison of math grades, a comparison of grades in science, history/government, and English.

I read once that IQ tests showed no significant difference between gay males and straight males but I couldn't tell you where I read that or if it was something to be trusted.

ntk said...

The problem with any statistic involving self-identified gays is that higher-IQ gays are, I would imagine, more likely to identify as gay. Lower IQ gays are more likely to pretend to be straight.

That means that any estimate of gay IQ is going to overstate gay IQ because the sample disproportionately excludes low-IQ gays.

Gays have more estrogen than straights, so I'd guess that gays would have similarly impaired spatial ability, and so their IQs would be lower than straight men, although probably still higher than female IQ.

Underachiever said...

Isn't low testosterone correlated with high verbal abilities?

Anonymous said...

"Gays have more estrogen than straights"

No research I have read on homosexuality has stated this.

Serum testosterone levels of gay men and straight men are the same.

ntk said...

I remember reading research on one of the evo blogs that showed a difference in estrogen levels (or maybe some other female hormone, I forget) between gay and straight men. The difference wasn't much though. Testosterone I don't know about.