Cognitive Tests at Three May Predict Adult Outcomes

December 15, 2016

Dr. Terrie Moffitt
A new study published in the Nature Human Behavior co-led by DIBS member Terrie Moffitt showed that children who performed poorly on cognitive tests at the age of three were far more likely to have serious social issues as adults.  The longitudinal study followed more than a thousand subjects in New Zealand.  The study separated out the effects of poverty, as even middle class children who performed poorly on cognitive tests ended up with more problems as adults.  The low performers account for a majority of criminal activity, prescriptions, and welfare payments as adults.    Dr. Moffitt emphasized that she believed the outcomes are fungible with proper support and education.  This is another in a series of new studies that highlight the economic and social costs of not investing enough resources in childcare, parental support, and early education.  Read more on BBC's website here.

Learn more about DIBS

The Duke Institute for Brain Sciences is a scientific institute with a collaborative spirit and a commitment to education, service and knowledge across disciplines. We encourage creativity, taking risks, sharing ideas and working together.


Sign up to receive email updates about DIBS news, events and more.