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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 317-324

Socio-demographic factors influencing measures of cognitive function of early adolescent students in abuja, Nigeria

1 Department of Paediatrics, National Hospital Abuja, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Nigeria
2 Department of Paediatrics, Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Nigeria
3 Department of Paediatrics, Jos University Teaching Hospital, University of Jos, Jos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Vincent Ebuka Nwatah
Department of Paediatrics, National Hospital, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/npmj.npmj_157_22

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Background: The brain in the early adolescent period undergoes enhanced changes with the radical reorganisation of the neuronal network leading to improvement in cognitive capacity. A complex interplay exists between environment and genetics that influences the outcome of intellectual capability. We, therefore, aimed to evaluate the relationship between socio-demographic variables and measures of cognitive function (intelligence quotient [IQ] and academic performance) of early adolescents. Methods: The study was a descriptive cross-sectional study of early adolescents aged 10–14 years. Raven's Standard Progressive Matrices was used to assess the IQ and academic performance was assessed by obtaining the average of all the subjects' scores in the last three terms that made up an academic year. A confidence interval of 95% was assumed and a value of P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The overall mean (standard deviation) age of the study population was 11.1 years (±1.3) with male-to-female ratio of 1:1. Female sex was associated with better academic performance with P = 0.004. The students with optimal IQ performance were more likely (61.7%) to perform above average than those with sub-optimal IQ performance (28.6%). As the mother's age increased, the likelihood of having optimal IQ performance increased 1.04 times (odds ratio [OR] = 1.04; 95 confidence interval [CI] = 1.01–1.07). Students in private schools were three times more likely to have optimal IQ performance than those from public schools (OR = 2.79; 95 CI = 1.65–4.71). Conclusion: The present study demonstrated that students' IQ performance and the female gender were associated with above-average academic performance. The predictors of optimal IQ performance found in this study were students' age, maternal age and school type.

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