Do National IQs predict immigrant performance across Europe?

(Sorry, pics are not lining up and I don’t have a whole lot of time to waste on this. I’m sure you can manage.)

Weakly to moderately.

Below lists the correlations between L&V (2012)’s national IQs and immigrant student performance on PISA 2006 (science) and 2003 (math). Column A gives the country of origin; columns B and C, the 2006 immigrant mean scores and IQ equivalents, respectively, across 16 countries; columns D and E, give the 2003 immigrant mean scores and IQ equivalents, respectively, across 13 countries; column F, gives L & V’s 2012 national IQs; columns G an H the residual. To note, the IQ equivalents were calculated using the respective UK 2006 and 2003 science and math scores (515 and 495, if I got them right) and the international SD of 100. The methodology used was somewhat different than that used by L & V, so the IQ estimates and L & V’s estimates are not precisely comparable. The correlations discussed below obviously are unaffected by this.

The correlation between performance on the Pisa 2003 (math) and 2006 (science) was 0.73. One interpretation of this figure would be that it represents the reliability of individual PISA subtest scores (i.e., math and science) as indices of the “true” immigrant scores. As shown at the bottom, the Pisa 2006-National IQ correlation was 0.44. Corrected for unreliability it was 0.6. For Pisa 2003, the correlation was 0.33. Corrected, it was 0.45. As seen in column G and F, the major outliers were India and South Africa. The South African scores could be inflated by White, Indian, and Colored immigrants to the OCED. (South African immigrant scores were only available for Australia (Pisa 2006) and New Zealand (Pisa 2003); as such, the veracity of the above speculation can be verified by checking the racial composition of SA immigrants to these two nations.) With the South African scores removed, the respective PISA 2006, 2003-National IQ correlations were 0.56 and 0.5.

Excel file here.


Dronkers and de Heus. The Educational Performance of Children
of Immigrants in Sixteen OECD Countries

Levels et al. Immigrant Children’s Educational Achievement in Western Countries: Origin, Destination, and Community Effects on Mathematical Performance

See also:

Carabana. Why do the results of immigrant students depend so much on their country of origin?


Cattaneo and Wolter. Migration Policy Can Boost PISA Results: Findings from a Natural Experiment

Levels and Dronkers. Educational performance of native and immigrant children from various countries of origin

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