сряда, 13 юни 2012 г.

SAT scores and your family income

Recently I came a cross a widely discussed correlation between SAT scores and family income . And I couldn't  desist myself not to comment it here . I presume the majority of the people who've seen it have explained it to themselves simply: students with rich parents had private tutors or had somehow "bought" their high scores. But to me , this graph reveals a lot more. My social status rose abruptly 2 years ago , with my family income rising fourth fold. I can literally tell the difference between what's like being a poor student and being a rich student.  Although the empirical data is american , to my observations this correlation is valid worldwide. Here's why:

 First, let's ask ourselves a question: What makes rich kids smarter than their poorer peers? When I was poor I didn't have my own desk , nor a tranquil family atmosphere - my parents argued at a daily basis. When summer came I had to work so that I could afford buying decent clothing and have money for school supplies. On top of that I grew addicted to video games since the real world really sucked for me. My friend circle consisted of people with similar interests , which meant I wasn't socially motivated to study harder. How could you find time and motivation to study with all that pressure anyway?

And then I suddenly became an upper middle class student. Working in the summer became optional. I had a desk , money to buy not only school supplies , but workbooks and everything else I needed for some extra knowledge in what interested me. My social environment went through a complete overhaul , which resulted establishing friendships with ambitious and smart students who aspire to study in top foreign universities. I dare to posit that even my personality changed significantly.And since my life was  great , I lost my addiction to gaming. The whole change made me go further than anyone else in my school in academic aspect. And no , I didn't get tutored or anything. I did the studying all by myself . But this couldn't have been possible If I hadn't had all the good studying conditions and prosperity-oriented friends. And I can only dream about the possibilities  if this  happened earlier -  Language vacations , model united nations participation  , better education and much more.

 There's also the inherited intelligence factor.Frankly ,  if your dad has the ability to make  200,000+ $ monthly , you'll  also be predisposed to make the same revenue. This  might be one of the  reasonons why in a world where the salary is majorly defined by academic merit and experience , the rich become wealthier and the poor become more miserable. Of course , there are plenty of other economic and social factiors that influence this trend , but  give that correlation graph a second look and think of the education you could get by combining the Writing , CR and Math means of the "poor househould" students. It's approximately 1300. That score can't get you anywhere. This results a formidable part of the poor students not being able to attend a decent college.

 This video explains the differences in how wealthier and poorer people think. I concur to the logic this guy has. Like him , I have met people from the different sides of the income spectrum and assesed their characters and ways of thinking. Surrounding yourself with smart and wealthy friends will inevitably make you one of them. The same applies for the opposite .  Many of my peers have gone down the wrong road and met the wrong people.

 But there will always be exceptions. Exceptions like Barack Obama's father who was born in Kenya but received a scholarship and eventually graduated from Harvard. Then , after realizing that there's nothing else greater to conquer , he returned to Kenya .