Why children of older fathers are smarter, more successful

Sons of older fathers are more intelligent, more focused on their interests and less concerned about fitting in, characteristics typically seen in “geeks'”, says a new study. While previous research has shown that children of older fathers are at a higher risk of some adverse outcomes, including autism and schizophrenia, the study published recently in Translational Psychiatry suggests that children of older fathers may also have certain advantages over their peers in educational and career settings.

The researchers from King’s College London and The Seaver Autism Center for Research and Treatment at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in the US collected behavioural and cognitive data from 15,000 UK-based twin pairs. The twins were measured on ‘geeklike’ traits, including nonverbal IQ, strong focus on the subject of interest and levels of social aloofness.Overall, higher geek index scores were reported in the sons of older fathers. In addition `geekier’ children do better in school exams, particularly in the STEM (science, technology , engineering and mathematics) subjects.

Although the study did not investigate the role of environmental factors, it is felt older fathers, with higher socio-economic status than younger ones. can offer their children a more enriched environment.


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