Early Puberty Is Associated With Higher Academic Achievement in Boys and Girls and Partially Explains Academic Sex Differences

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dc.contributor.author Torvik, Fartein Ask
dc.contributor.author Flato, Martin
dc.contributor.author McAdams, Tom A.
dc.contributor.author Colman, Ian
dc.contributor.author Silventoinen, Karri
dc.contributor.author Stoltenberg, Camilla
dc.date.accessioned 2021-10-04T13:21:02Z
dc.date.available 2021-10-04T13:21:02Z
dc.date.issued 2021-09
dc.identifier.citation Torvik , F A , Flato , M , McAdams , T A , Colman , I , Silventoinen , K & Stoltenberg , C 2021 , ' Early Puberty Is Associated With Higher Academic Achievement in Boys and Girls and Partially Explains Academic Sex Differences ' , Journal of Adolescent Health , vol. 69 , no. 3 , pp. 503-510 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2021.02.001
dc.identifier.other PURE: 169016906
dc.identifier.other PURE UUID: 3ac97fcf-17ef-442b-9966-5e43eeea8ef2
dc.identifier.other WOS: 000688379900023
dc.identifier.other ORCID: /0000-0003-1759-3079/work/100975855
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10138/334885
dc.description.abstract Purpose: On average, boys have lower academic achievement than girls. We investigated whether the timing of puberty is associated with academic achievement, and whether later puberty among boys contributes to the sex difference in academic achievement. Method: Examination scores at age 16 were studied among 13,477 British twins participating in the population-based Twins Early Development Study. A pubertal development scale, a height based proxy of growth spurt, and age at menarche were used as indicators of puberty. Associations between puberty, sex, and academic achievement were estimated in phenotypic mediation models and biometric twin models. Results: Earlier puberty was associated with higher academic achievement both in boys and girls. The exception was early age at menarche in girls, which associated with lower academic achievement. More than half of the sex differences in academic achievement could be linked to sex differences in pubertal development, but part of this association appeared to be rooted in prepubertal differences. The biometric twin modelling indicated that the association between puberty and academic achievement was due to shared genetic risk factors. Genetic influences on pubertal development accounted for 7%-8% of the phenotypic variation in academic achievement. Conclusions: Pubertal maturation relates to the examination scores of boys and of girls. This can give genes related to pubertal maturation an influence on outcomes in education and beyond. Sex differences in pubertal maturation can explain parts of the sex difference in academic achievement. Grading students when they are immature may not accurately measure their academic potential. (c) 2021 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). en
dc.format.extent 8
dc.language.iso eng
dc.relation.ispartof Journal of Adolescent Health
dc.rights cc_by
dc.rights.uri info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.subject Academic achievement
dc.subject Puberty
dc.subject Menarche
dc.subject Sex differences
dc.subject Twins
dc.subject MENARCHE
dc.subject CHILDHOOD
dc.subject AGE
dc.subject ADOLESCENCE
dc.subject MATURATION
dc.subject IMPUTATION
dc.subject EDUCATION
dc.subject VALIDITY
dc.subject GENDER
dc.subject 5141 Sociology
dc.subject 516 Educational sciences
dc.subject 5144 Social psychology
dc.title Early Puberty Is Associated With Higher Academic Achievement in Boys and Girls and Partially Explains Academic Sex Differences en
dc.type Article
dc.contributor.organization Helsinki Inequality Initiative (INEQ)
dc.contributor.organization Demography
dc.contributor.organization Population Research Unit (PRU)
dc.contributor.organization Center for Population, Health and Society
dc.contributor.organization Sociology
dc.contributor.organization Faculty of Social Sciences
dc.description.reviewstatus Peer reviewed
dc.relation.doi https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2021.02.001
dc.relation.issn 1054-139X
dc.rights.accesslevel openAccess
dc.type.version publishedVersion

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