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The Internet Education

Students From States With Faster Internet Tend To Have Higher Test Scores 175

Posted by Soulskill
from the in-before-correlation-!=-causation dept.
An anonymous reader sends word of correlation found between higher internet speeds and higher test scores. Quoting: The numbers—first crunched by the Internet provider comparison site HSI — show a distinct trend between faster Internet and higher ACT test scores. On the high end, Massachusetts scores big with an average Internet speed of 13.1Mbps, and an average ACT test score of 24.1. Mississippi, on the other hand, has an average speed of just 7.6Mbps and an average score of 18.9.

In between those two states, the other 48 fall in a positive correlation that, while not perfect, is quite undeniable. According to HSI's Edwin Ivanauskas, the correlation is stronger than that between household income and test scores, which have long been considered to be firmly connected to each other. The ACT scores were gathered from ACT.org, which has the official rankings and averages for the 2013 test, and the speed ratings were taken from Internet analytics firm Akamai's latest report.
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Students From States With Faster Internet Tend To Have Higher Test Scores

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  • by PPH (736903) on Friday August 22, 2014 @12:10PM (#47730783)

    Yep.

    Low test scores correlate with low income. Low income correlates with not affording premium services.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 22, 2014 @12:54PM (#47731343)

    It's also worth noting that ACT scores may not be the best metric for success.

    In some states it's mandatory for high school students to take the ACT, which may lead to lower state averages (technically those lower averages are more accurate for the whole population, but still don't compare directly with states where only the best students take the test).

    Moreover, SAT is more popular on the coasts. Many of my high-achieving friends (think West Coast Ivy League) never even took the ACT. With that in mind, how can we say that the high scores in MA are truly representative of the general population?

  • by i kan reed (749298) on Friday August 22, 2014 @01:39PM (#47731681) Homepage Journal

    No, causation can actually have a negative correlation, surprisingly.

    It's relatively easy to generate cases where X can be caused by 2 different things, but the majority case simply has a stronger effect, if you don't account for mediating factors.

    Let's take a case where everything is controlled by people so cause can be quite directly ascribed.
    Applying for US citizenship causes US citizenship.
    But among residents of the US, those applying for US citizenship are far less likely to end up being citizens than those who don't.

: is not an identifier

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