The average American thinks they are smarter than the average American

Study looked at how gender, race and wealth affected perceptions of intelligence

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The Independent US

A fascinating study into self-perception has found that 55 percent of Americans think they are more intelligent than the average American, a sort of self-defeating statistic that in other words means the average American thinks they are smarter than the average American.

The poll by research organisation YouGov also found that just 34 percent of US citizens thought they were of equal smarts as everyone else, while a brutally honest 4 percent said they felt less intelligent than most people.

Looking at how perceptions of one's own intelligence is affected by gender, the study also showed that men are 24 percent more likely than women (15 percent) to say they are "much more intelligent" than most Americans, as are white people compared to hispanic and black people.

There are interesting disparities when wealth is taken into account too. When asked about US citizens collectively, people who make less than $40,000 a year are more likely to say Americans are intelligent, while those who make over $100,000 are much more likely to say they are unintelligent.

The National Journal notes that past research has shown that western cultures have a habit of inflating their self-worth, and the opinions expressed in the study may have more to do with pride than actual brainpower.