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Research: People can gauge real IQ of men from photos but not women

Men and women were found to be able to assess the real intelligence of men based on IQ test correlation but not women according to new research conducted by Karel Kleisner and colleagues form the Charles University in Prague in the Czech Republic that was published in the March 20, 2014, edition of the journal Public Library of Science.

Graph demonstrating linear positive and quadratic negative relationship between IQ and perceived intelligence in men (a) and women (b).
Kleisner et al. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0081237.g004

A group of 160 students selected at random were asked to rate the intelligence of random photographs of 40 men and 40 women. The real intelligence of the test subjects was measured by the standard IQ tests and compared to the evaluator’s ratings.

The evaluators were able to perceive the intelligence of men at a much higher rate that corresponded with the IQ test than they could with women.

The general perception of intelligence was enhanced by smiles, broad noses, sharp chins, and a broader distance between the eyes. Lower intelligence was perceived as being correlated with short noses, rounded chins, eyes that were closer together, and lack of smiles.

There was a positive correlation between attractiveness and intelligence. Women who were deemed attractive were considered more intelligent by both men and women. There was no direct correlation between measured IQ and attractiveness for men or women.

People that were perceived as intelligent were also considered to be more trustworthy by both men and women.

The researchers conclude that perception of intelligence based on the observation of a person’s face alone is a stereotype that does not correlate with reality.

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