Behavior Genetics

, Volume 37, Issue 2, pp 273–283 | Cite as

Genotype by Environment Interaction in Adolescents’ Cognitive Aptitude

  • K. Paige HardenEmail author
  • Eric Turkheimer
  • John C. Loehlin
Original Paper


In a replication of Turkheimer, Haley, Waldron, D’Onofrio, Gottesman II (2003, Socioeconomic status modifies heritability of IQ in young children. Psychological Science, 14:623-628), we investigate genotype–environment (G × E) interaction in the cognitive aptitude of 839 twin pairs who completed the National Merit Scholastic Qualifying Test in 1962. Shared environmental influences were stronger for adolescents from poorer homes, while genetic influences were stronger for adolescents from more affluent homes. No significant differences were found between parental income and parental education interaction effects. Results suggest that environmental differences between middle- to upper-class families influence the expression of genetic potential for intelligence, as has previously been suggested by Bronfenbrenner and Ceci’s (1994, Nature-nurture reconceptualized in developmental perspective: a bioecological model Psychological Review, 101:568-586) bioecological model.


Gene-environment interaction Intelligence Socioeconomic status Cognitive aptitude 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Paige Harden
    • 1
    Email author
  • Eric Turkheimer
    • 1
  • John C. Loehlin
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  2. 2.University of TexasAustinUSA

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