IQ scores worldwide have been on the rise for a century
One's intelligence quotient, or IQ, is regarded by many as being a measure of a person's level of intelligence.
A recent study out of the University of Vienna shows that those scores, which are calculated via test responses, have been increasing worldwide for the past century.
Whether or not that proves people are really smarter than they used to be is debatable.
The upward trend does, however, raise a number of questions concerning why it's occurred.
Known as the Flynn Effect, the continued rise was first observed by philosopher Jacob Flynn in 1984.
He calculated that on average scores increased by 3 points per decade, resulting in a 30-point increase, the difference between just average and very superior, over a century.
The researchers reviewed data from over 270 studies conducted between 1909 and 2013 and confirmed that the effect is real.
No clear cause for it emerged, but the scientists posit that one of the largest factors is society's increased interest in education.
They also attribute a greater duration of schooling and living in an environment that allows for it.
Health, income, and nutrition are all considered to likely be key factors in creating the conditions conducive to academic progress and thus to the boosting of IQs.
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