Forget being smarter than a fifth-grader. Most Americans think they're smarter than everyone else in the country.
Fifty-five percent of Americans think that they are smarter than the average American, according to a new survey by YouGov, a research organization that uses online polling. In other words, as YouGov cleverly points out, the average American thinks that he or she is smarter than the average American.
A humble 34 percent of citizens say they are about as smart as everyone else, while a dispirited 4 percent say they are less intelligent than most people.
Quick stats lesson: It is possible for 96% of the population to be smarter than average--but only if those 4% are SOOOOOO below average that it drags the average below 96% of the rest of the population's intelligence.
Proof. Suppose 96% of the population has an intelligence score of 100 (however you want to measure it) and 4% has an intelligence score of 0. The average intelligence score will be 96. Which means that 96% of the population is above average.
Now if you want to talk about medians...that's a completely different story.