June 18, 2006

IQ by State - New Data

As a follow-up to the notorious IQ-by-Blue-State-v.-Red-State hoax that I exposed back in 2004, a reader wrote to me:

I know this is not really scientifically rigorous, but I thought you might find it interesting. And, no, I didn't pay for it! I took the Tickle IQ test for fun and several days later got an email saying I could get further analysis for free if I look at a couple of ads.

These Tickle state rankings (below) look pretty reasonable to me as estimates of the average non-Hispanic white IQ by state (I presume white people are the main market for online IQ tests, although I may be wrong), with scores boosted by about 10 points due to self-selection and/or grade inflation. Please note that states are not ranked within a particular score such as 114. Within each score, they are displayed (for some reason) in reverse alphabetical order.

Average Tickle IQ Scores By State
Over 30 million people have taken Tickle's Classic IQ Test. Here's a look at the average Tickle IQ scores, broken out by state.

District of Columbia 115

Washington 114
Utah 114
Oregon 114
Minnesota 114
Massachusetts 114
Colorado 114

Wisconsin 113
Virginia 113
Vermont 113
Pennsylvania 113
New York 113
New Jersey 113
New Hampshire 113
Nebraska 113
Montana 113
Maryland 113
Kansas 113
Iowa 113
Illinois 113
Idaho 113
Hawaii 113
Delaware 113
Connecticut 113
California 113
Arizona 113
Alaska 113

Wyoming 112
Texas 112
Tennessee 112
South Dakota 112
South Carolina 112
Rhode Island 112
Oklahoma 112
Ohio 112
North Dakota 112
North Carolina 112
New Mexico 112
Nevada 112
Missouri 112
Michigan 112
Maine 112
Indiana 112
Georgia 112
Florida 112

Louisiana 111
Kentucky 111
Arkansas 111
Alabama 111

West Virginia 110
Mississippi 110

You'll note that the range is pretty narrow -- only 5 points separate Washington DC (115) and Mississippi (110). (I would guess that D.C.'s average IQ score is being dragged down a little by the District's large black majority -- it's small white ultra-yuppie population in the Northwest of DC is, I would guess, in a class by itself in average IQ compared to any full state).

In contrast, the IQ hoax data, which The Economist and tens of millions of Internet users fell for (The Economist later published an apology), claimed an absurd 28 point difference between the high and low states and even a 26 point gap between mostly white Connecticut and mostly white Utah.

These results go along pretty well with other data such as NAEP scores, education levels, 1960 Project Talent IQ scores, standard of living, and so forth. Colorado and Virginia have shown themselves over and over to be the pride of the Red States. Utah does a little better here than on other measures.

So, as I've said before, the 2004 blue states do seem to a little better on white IQ than red states, but the difference is not very large.

More direct measures, such as self-reported education levels on exit polls, show the parties being very similar, with Kerry voters having about 6 weeks more schooling than Bush voters in 2004, GOP House voters having more education in 2002, and Bush and Gore voters being virtually tied in 2000.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer


Anonymous said...

i'd be pretty skeptical of any iq test who's average IQ result is 130.

Anonymous said...

You said - "I would guess that D.C.'s average IQ score is being dragged down a little by the District's large black majority..." Not at all racist, are you?

Anonymous said...

I would have to agree with anonymous#2 there. Your thoughts, as they are, sound a tadd defencive in your delivery. I would work on that if I were you...lol@me...here I am giving advice anonymously....what a jerk I am, eh!?. Anyways, good luck with your bigotry, gotta go. ;3=/]

Anonymous said...

sorry to sound blunt, but don't be mad if it's the truth. Its been proven time and time again that minorities not only have less schooling, but also have a lower IQ than that of the whites. Sad as it is, it is fact. by the way, my IQ is 131, took the test myself.

Anonymous said...

Well, I am minority, African American Male, 24 years old, Business owner. Husband and Father... And my iq score was 140... and I can prove it.. Doesnt matter how you start the race, its about how you finish it. Dont accept hand-outs. be aggressive and be the best you can.

Congratulations, Darrell!
Your IQ score is 140

This number is based on a scientific formula that compares how many questions you answered correctly on the Classic IQ Test relative to others.

Your Intellectual Type is Visionary Philosopher. This means you are highly intelligent and have a powerful mix of skills and insight that can be applied in a variety of different ways. Like Plato, your exceptional math and verbal skills make you very adept at explaining things to others — and at anticipating and predicting patterns. And that's just some of what we know about you from your IQ results.

Find out more in your personalized 15-page IQ Report. It's ready right now!

Anonymous said...

It is true that the average minority individual IN THE US tends to have on average a lower IQ score than the average white person.

This is because intelligence quotient is determined by intellectual stimulation, parental attention and positive learning experiences during a child's formative years. Frankly, when a mother is working two jobs and struggling to even do housework while her kids wander around outside, it isn't the same as Californian suburban bliss.

It's financial demographics, not racial demographics, that contribute to IQ. Richer people (who aren't workaholics) have more time for their kids. The end.

Anyone who tells you that white people are 'superior' in IQ is completely ignorant of the existence of places like Japan or India, or the great learning that came out of the Arab world when Europe was full of battling barbarians and squabbling clergy.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

That did sound really racist. >_< But anyways... I got 147 on the "Super IQ Test" which is supposedly more accurate... As much as I'd love to believe it, that's got to be high, especially since I'm only in my senior year of high school.

Anonymous said...

when given a book, only you can determine the true value of the data within. Education is the key to unlock worlds of knowledge, but it takes you to open the door....

Anonymous said...

I'm not an American but i come from a third world country and my IQ is still that higher than an average white person....133.

Anonymous said...

hi, well im 4rm the uk and i just scored 126 on a recent iq test.I am 14 years old plus an ethnic minority . I understand that your saying the iq is high in such areas as d.c, but you then cometo the conclusion that ethnic minorty's have a lower iq because there are less in areas as d.c. Unfortunatley i am not from the us but my iq is still far higher than the 'whites' in the us.

Audacious Epigone said...


Did you post all of these anonymous comments for the sake of creating an anecdotally-obsessed, data-ignorant opposing strawhorde to be made to intellectually appear to resemble third graders?

You don't need to do that. You're empirical evidence can stand on its own.

Anonymous said...

This guy is clearly an idiot. The state/district with the highest African American Population has the highest average IQ. I wonder whats going on in Maine and Rhode Island....

There are so many factors at play here that this guy's simple analysis is nothing more then just that...simple.

Anonymous said...

One thing that nobody seems to talk about is that only people with a lot of time, probably money and a computer are going to take this IQ test. That skews it way to the high side IMO. I think the range would be at least 2-3 times as large as the 5 point difference in results shown if you could get everyone in on it. How many poor/disadvantaged people took this test ? My guess next to none.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Bill.

as for the race issue...I too think that this is likely due to the financial situation of the individual's family. Even if there is some correlation between race and IQ, it isn't useful information. When you see a black man standing next to a white man, you can't assume that the white man is smarter...you might be right 11 out of 20 times. But you're wrong 45% of the time, and an asshole 100% of the time. I'd rather meet the individual than make any assumptions.

Anonymous said...

the fact of the matter is...We as Americans have an average IQ of 98 and the high scores are skewed towards Asian-Americans (Chinese, Indians, Japanese, etc) and educated Whites....

Anonymous said...

I got 131 lately when i was half asleep :-) Maybe i was just lucky...:-( ??
But in 1972 when they had to test my skill for enrollment in the Norw. army, they had to drop me(hallelujah!!!) When i looked on that IQtest in 72 - the only thing I remember was that I understood ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. I had smoked hashish two summers, and been a drop-out and hippie some years. Now remember Einstein invented the atomic bomb. How exactly smart was that????