If a baby turns out to be brainy, you can give yourself a big pat on the back: Research says a mother’s genetics determine how intelligent children become while a father’s genes make little difference.
As if you needed a study to tell you this.
On a very basic level, you may seriously not need a study to tell you this. Think back to middle school biology class. Women have twice as many X chromosomes as men (women’s ʂɛҳ chromosomes are XX while men’s are XY). So children are more likely to inherit any X-related genetic material from their mothers. You guessed it: Intelligence is tied to the X chromosome.
If you’re still not convinced, try this: The evidence goes back for decades. Starting in 1994, researchers at the Medical Research Council Social and Public Health Sciences Unit interviewed 12,686 people ranging in age from 14 to 22. Their results? After accounting for the children’s IQ, race, education, and socio-economic status, the best predictor for intelligence was, once again, the mother’s IQ. Want to give your mother a gift in return for all she gave you? Moms will love these presents.
Furthermore, researchers found any genes from the father that are responsible for more advanced cognitive functions may be automatically deactivated. Only about 40 to 60 percent of intelligence is hereditary. Stimulation, environment, and personality play a role in success too, all of which fathers can contribute to.