Being good at estimating time can be a useful skill on its own, but it may also indicate higher mathematical intelligence as well, according to a new study published in the Dec. 7 issue of the online journal PLoS ONE.
A test of 202 students, evenly divided between males and females, revealed that those subjects who were better at estimating the durations of a series of short tones were also more likely to correctly answer various mathematical questions relative to their more poorly estimating counterparts.
This correlation was not seen with a general intelligence test, suggesting that time estimation is specifically related to mathematical intelligence.
The authors, led by Peter Kramer of the University of Padua in Italy, conclude that this relationship is likely due to a common reliance on spatial ability. "Encouraging this tendency might help improve mathematical intelligence and satisfy one of modern society's greatest needs", says Dr. Kramer.
Citation: Kramer P, Bressan P, Grassi M (2011) Time Estimation Predicts Mathematical Intelligence. PLoS ONE 6(12): e28621. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0028621
Financial Disclosure: This work was supported by a grant from the University of Padova (Progetto di Ricerca di Ateneo CPDA084849) to Paola Bressan. The funder had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
Competing Interest Statement: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
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