Greater weight at birth? Best grades at school

The academic future (both primary and secondary) could also be related to a feature that seems very foreign to it: the weight you have when you were born. At least that is what a Northwestern University study published in the journal suggests. American Economic Review. From what follows, too, that a long gestation (staying as long as possible in the mother's womb) is better.

To carry out the study, data from more than 1.3 million children and almost 15,000 pairs of twins from birth to high school.

For example, children who weighed 3 kg at birth were, on average, at the 46th percentile of the grade distribution (reading and math) in primary school, compared to the 57th percentile for 4.5 kg children.

This results have been detected even among twins: the heaviest of the two obtains better academic qualifications, regardless of the quality of the school, their race, socioeconomic status, maternal education or family experiences.

As it points David Figlio, co-author of the study: "a child who is born healthy does not necessarily have a fully formed brain." However, it also qualifies: "the birth weight does not seal the fate of a child."

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