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Boys are bigger liars than girls, new research suggests

Boys are bigger liars than girls, new research suggests

Boys are bigger liars than girls, new research suggests

Scientists claim to have identified the most common practitioners of spinning a false tale.

A University College London (UCL) Institute of Education study of 40,000 teenagers reveals that boys; those from privileged backgrounds; and North Americans in particular, top the charts as the bigger liars of the lot.

The Scots and Northern Irish are straight talkers but, according to the study of 15-year-olds from Anglophone regions, including the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland, Americans are full of it.

“Everyone knows a bullsh*tter but there’s been very little work done on them,” John Jerrim, who led the latest study, told The Guardian. “Who bullsh*ts, and the psychological traits they share, are important questions to answer.”

The researchers asked 15-year-olds around the globe a series of questions to determine how well they have mastered key academic subjects.

For one of the questions, the teenagers rated how familiar they are with 16 mathematical concepts ranging from polygons and vectors to quadratic functions and congruent figures. Hidden among the bona fide terms were three fakes.

Jerrim took the students’ responses to the three fake concepts to draw up a “bullsh*t scale”, which he then used to compare different groups, such as boys and girls, high and low socioeconomic status, and the regions where people lived.

“Boys are bigger bullsh*tters than girls, children from higher socioeconomic backgrounds tend to bullshit more than those from lower ones, and North Americans bullsh*t the most,” Jerrim said.

Indeed, across the world a surprisingly high proportion of 15-year-old survey respondents vowed that they could subjunctively scale a declarative fraction of proper numbers. In other words, they were already fluent bullsh*tters.

“Our study shows that bullsh*tters express much higher levels of self-confidence in their skills than non-bullsh*tters,” says co-author on the study, Nikki Shure.

At the top of the table were Canada and the US, next came Australia and New Zealand, followed by England and Ireland. Northern Ireland was next, but Scotland was by far the most honest.

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