,Researchers have discovered that people with high IQ’s have brains that are more efficient allowing them to have better visual perception.
That is, people with high IQ scores aren’t just more intelligent, they also process sensory information differently.
The study findings, published in the Cell Press journal Current Biology, explains that the brains of people with high IQ are automatically more selective when it comes to perceiving objects in motion.
As such, they are specifically more likely to suppress larger and less relevant background motion.
“It is not that people with high IQ are simply better at visual perception,” said Duje Tadin, Ph.D., of the University of Rochester.
“Instead, their visual perception is more discriminating. They excel at seeing small, moving objects but struggle in perceiving large, background-like motions.”
The discovery was made by asking people to watch videos showing moving bars on a computer screen.
Their task was to state whether the bars were moving to the left or to the right. The researchers measured how long the video had to run before the individual could correctly perceive the motion.
The results show that individuals with high IQ can pick up on the movement of small objects faster than low-IQ individuals can. That wasn’t unexpected, Tadin says.
The surprise came when tests with larger objects showed just the opposite: individuals with high IQ were slower to see what was right there in front of them.
“There is something about the brains of high-IQ individuals that prevents them from quickly seeing large, background-like motions,” Tadin adds.
In other words, it isn’t a conscious strategy but rather something automatic and fundamentally different about the way their brains work.
Researchers believe the ability to block out distraction is a significant advantage – especially in our information-overloaded environment. It helps to explain what makes some brains more efficient than others.
An efficient brain “has to be picky,” Tadin says.
Source: Cell Press