We's all just some simple folks down hear in Florida. We ain't too good at that fancy booky learning they like to do up yonder in the North. In fact, according to that there Washington Post, we're the fifth-dumbest state in the nation. At least that's what we think the Post's analysis found. We ain't never been much for understanding no number math.
See, after Donald Trump openly wondered how dumb people in Iowa were, the Post decided to prove him wrong by using the internet's favorite semismart brand of click bait: the ranking article supported by math.
Here are the factors used in the analysis:
- IQ, as estimated by Virginia Commonwealth's Michael McDaniel in 2006
- 2015 SAT scores, compiled by the Post
- 2015 ACT scores, via the company that administers the tests
- The percentage of college graduates in the state, compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau
Then the Post found how much the average in each state deviates from the national average and doubled the weighting of IQ to come up with the results.
Florida, as it turns out, came in 46th out of 50. The only states that ranked lower were Alabama, Mississippi, Nevada, and, apparently the dumbest, Hawaii. Though, the Post does mention longstanding controversies that college admission aptitude tests and IQ tests are inherently biased, but it found that the correlation between a state's ranking and its whiteness was "not a terribly strong one."
Image via The Washington Post
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Florida was below average in all metrics, but what really doomed us was our performance on standardized tests (which is odd, considering Florida students pretty much do nothing but prepare for and take standardized tests nowadays). Our average SAT score was a 7.7 standard deviation below the national average, and our average ACT score was a 6.6 deviation below the nation. Which would be the fifth and sixth worst performance on the respective tests.
By pure IQ scores, Florida is only the 12th dumbest state. We were 17th for fewest college grads. So we do slightly better in areas that take the total population into account and worse in the ones that are merely a measure of teenagers.
The smartest state was of course America's perpetual valedictorian, Massachusetts.