Size of pupil is linked to the difference in intelligence level: Study

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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Eyes are the window to the soul, this popular belief has a strong connection to science. For instance, when you see someone you are attracted to, your pupils get bigger. And now, some studies have proven that it can also tell about a person’s intelligence level.

A recent study conducted by the Georgia Institute of Technology in the US has found that the size of the pupil can tell about a person’s level of intelligence. According to the research, pupil size may be related to cognitive abilities, the larger the pupil, the sharper the person.

As part of the research, scientists observed more than 500 people between the age of 18 and 35. They asked participants to stare at a blank computer screen in dim laboratory light conditions. Then, the researchers measured their pupil size using an eye tracker, a high-powered camera connected to a computer to accurately capture the cornea and pupil. 

Afterward, the participants were asked to perform some tasks that were designed to measure their “fluid intelligence”, the ability to reason through and solve new problems, “attention control”, the capacity to maintain focus amid distractions, and “working memory capacity”, the ability to store information over a required period of time.

Scientists found that people with larger pupil sizes had higher fluid intelligence and attention control. Further, they had higher memory capacity but the difference was not as much compared to that in the case of fluid intelligence and attention control.

The size of pupils tells how much regulation, organization, and coordination among different parts of the brain is happening. If the coordination is better, a person can accomplish more challenging tasks leading to better brain performance, which is reflected in a person’s pupil size even while resting.

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