Has the influence of genes on education diminished over time?

From experience to meaning...

It was in our news that the Belgians became the second tallest group of men, only the Dutch are taller. One of the explanations was the interaction between of genes and the environment. Both elements – call it nature and nurture – have an influence, but to what amount and does this change over time? Well, new research suggests it does. Over the course of the 20th century, genes began to play a greater role in the height and body mass index (BMI) of Americans, while their significance decreased in educational outcomes and occurrence of heart disease.

I’m a bit baffled because the decrease of the significance in educational outcomes can be good – we’re beating the innate predisposition – but isn’t necessarily good news too as the influence of genes becomes less when the environment is less optimal. For this research Conley et al. examined data from nearly 9,000 Americans…

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