Most Ignorant States in 2023

It's a matter of heated debate as to which states are the dumbest in America, with some arguing that the West Coast is far more enlightened than the rest of the country.

What are the United States' most inept states? S are hotly contested; some say the West Coast has more intelligent residents than any other part of the country, while others say the Midwest and the South have the dumbest people. One measure of a country's level of intelligence is the average "Intelligence Quotient" (IQ) of its citizens, as determined by standardized testing. The average IQ of the country is 98, with a spread from a low of 55 to a high of 145. The closer a state's IQ is to 90, the "dumber" this state will be considered. The general consensus is that an IQ score of 90 or lower indicates a sub-average level of intelligence. This means that the percentage of the state's population with an IQ below the national average is higher here than in any other state.

# State Worst Typical IQ The Average Literacy Rate in the United States Average Level of Numerical Competence Mean SAT Scores 1 Mississippi 94.2 72% 56.6% 1,202 2 Louisiana 95.3 72.9% 58.4% 1,188 3 California 95.5 71.6% 64% 1,057 4 Hawaii 95.6 84.1% 76.6% 1,144 5 Alabama 95.7 76.1% 62.6% 1,159 6 New Mexico 95.7 70.9% 60.5% 996 7 Nevada 96.5 74.7% 63.5% 1,195 8 Arizona 97.4 76.6% 66.8% 1,181 9 Arkansas 97.5 76.9% 64.3% 1,194 10 Tennessee 97.7 78.3% 66% 1,220 11 Georgia 98 76.4% 63.4% 1,086 12 Florida 98.4 76.3% 65.2% 993 13 A State in the Southeastern United States 98.4 77.6% 65% 1,036 14 The state of West Virginia 98.7 79.1% 67.2% 1,007 15 Alaska 99 87.3% 79.2% 1,119 16 Oklahoma 99.3 79.9% 69% 1,042 17 Kentucky 99.4 78.1% 66.3% 1,207 18 Location: Rhode Island 99.5 79.6% 70.4% 1,011 19 Maryland 99.7 80% 69.8% 1,073 20 Illinois 99.9 79.6% 69.9% 1,007 21 Texas 100 71.8% 61.5% 1,003 22 A Place Called North Carolina 100.2 78.7% 67.1% 1,150 23 Delaware 100.4 79.7% 68.8% 984 24 Michigan 100.5 82.4% 72% 1,031 25 New York 100.7 75.6% 65.3% 1,057 26 Missouri 101 81.1% 70.9% 1,219 27 Utah 101.1 85.5% 77.7% 1,238 28 Oregon 101.2 83.2% 75.3% 1,119 29 Idaho 101.4 83.6% 74.3% 985 30 Pennsylvania 101.5 81.9% 71.3% 1,123 31 Colorado 101.6 83.4% 75.2% 1,072 32 Indiana 101.7 81.3% 70.5% 1,095 33 Ohio 101.8 82.3% 71.2% 1,048 34 Virginia 101.9 81.2% 71.6% 1,151 35 Washington 101.9 83.9% 76.5% 1,072 36 Nebraska 102.3 83.6% 75.7% 1,246 37 Wyoming 102.4 86.4% 77.5% 1,233 38 Kansas 102.8 83.1% 75% 1,219 39 New Jersey 102.8 79.3% 69.9% 1,125 40 Geographical Indicator: South Dakota 102.8 85.1% 76.3% 1,215 41 Wisconsin 102.9 84.7% 75.8% 1,215 42 Connecticut 103.1 82.8% 74% 1,072 43 Iowa 103.2 85.1% 77% 1,243 44 Maine 103.4 86.6% 77.1% 1,099 45 Montana 103.4 86.9% 77.3% 1,225 46 Minnesota 103.7 86.9% 79.6% 1,263 47 The State of North Dakota 103.8 86.6% 79% 1,258 48 Vermont 103.8 87.2% 79% 1,124 49 For the state of New Hampshire, see: 104.2 88.5% 80.9% 1,065 50 Massachusetts 104.3 82.7% 74.9% 1,184

Explaining Intelligence

The ability to think, reason, problem solve, and learn constitutes intelligence. What makes us human is our ability to assimilate new information, form novel concepts, and synthesize disparate pieces of data into a coherent whole, all while adapting to a dynamic and ever-shifting world.

Many different aspects of one's biology, environment, and way of life can have an impact on one's IQ. Studies have shown that a person's intelligence may be affected by factors outside of their genes, such as the size of their brain or the concentration of certain neurotransmitters. On the other hand, there is data suggesting that early life and developmental environmental factors like educational opportunities and nutritional status can predict adult achievement. Personal practices, such as engaging in intellectually stimulating activities or engaging in regular physical exercise, may also contribute to improved cognitive performance.

It's important to keep in mind that intelligence is not necessarily a predictor of success in school or in the workplace. Rather, it is indicative of a person's intellectual and creative potential. Furthermore, some experts argue that traditional IQ tests may not be adequate measures of one's overall intellectual capacity because intelligence is a fairly complex phenomenon with multiple determinants at play. Although IQ tests can be informative about a person's intellectual aptitude and academic potential, they should not be taken as absolute measures of that person's intelligence.

So, What Exactly Is a Low IQ?

Commonly, a person's IQ is considered low if it is below 70. People with low IQs may struggle with basic skills like reading, writing, problem solving, and following directions. There's a chance they have trouble retaining new information, staying focused, and picking up on the lessons their mistakes teach them. Individuals with low IQ may have more difficulty in school, finding and keeping a job, and making and maintaining friendships. There's a chance it could cause issues in the classroom as well, like learning disabilities or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. There are cases in which people with low IQs cannot perform even the most fundamental acts of self-care, such as getting dressed or preparing food, without assistance. Although there is no one-to-one relationship between IQ and success, those with lower IQs tend to have a tougher time in life than those with higher IQs.

It is estimated that between two and three percent of Americans have a low IQ. Environmental factors like poverty, poor nutrition, and inadequate health care can exacerbate underlying genetic predispositions to low IQ. Other causes include learning disabilities and developmental delays.

Consequences of a Low IQ

Personal and societal problems stemming from low IQ are significant in the United States. People with low IQs have a higher risk of experiencing poor mental health, as well as less academic and occupational success. They also have a higher risk of being homeless or developing substance abuse problems, as well as dropping out of school. The burden on social services and the potential slowing of economic growth caused by these socioeconomic challenges has repercussions far beyond the individuals directly affected.

Interventions like special education and early childhood development initiatives may help mitigate the effects of low IQ. People with low IQs are often stigmatized in our society, which can further isolate them from social, educational, and occupational opportunities. Those with low IQ often don't get the help they need for their development or mental health because there isn't enough understanding of the psychological complexity of the issue.

Stupidest Nations

By this measure, with a median IQ of only 94, Mississippi is the "dumbest" state in the United States. 2 With an average IQ of only 95, Louisiana is often referred to as the second-most "dumb" state. 3 California ranks third in the nation with a 95 IQ. 5 Hawaii, with a national average IQ of 95, ranks as the fourth "dumbest" state in the country. 6 With an average IQ of 95, Alabama ranks as the fifth "dumbest" state in the union. 7 The average IQ in the state of New Mexico is 95, making it the sixth "dumbest" in America. 7 The state of Nevada follows close behind in eighth place with an IQ of 96. 5 With a mean IQ of 97, Arizona ranks as the eighth "dumbest" state. 4 IQ in Arkansas is 97. It has a score of 5.5 and comes in at #9 on the list. Finally, with a national average IQ of 97, Tennessee ranks as the tenth "dumbest" state in the country. 7

Public education systems in these states are typically less effective and robust than those in other states, leading to lower rates of educational attainment. This means there are fewer high school and college graduates from these areas, which likely contributes to the already low IQs found there. If we look at the United States as an example, California has the highest percentage of its population that does not have a high school diploma. When compared to the rest of the country, the percentage of Mississippi and Louisiana residents who have not completed high school is high, and similarly low numbers of students in these states graduate from their respective public high schools. Inadequate medical care and a lack of nutritious food are also factors in determining a person's level of intelligence. It's possible that residents of these states have a higher risk of developing health problems that, in turn, lower their IQs.

The Ten Stupidest States

In the first place, Mississippi (94). 2 2 A 95 in Louisiana 3 3 SR-95 in California 5 4 HI-95, Hawaii 6 5 The score in Alabama is currently 95. 7 6 The New Mexico State Highway 95 7 7 Official State Score: Nevada 96 5 8 Road 97 in Arizona 4 9 State of Arkansas, 97th 5

Tennessee (97) 10 7

The USA's Dumpiest State

With a 94th ranking in educational attainment, Mississippi has long been mocked as "America's Dumbest State." A normal IQ is 2. When compared to other states, Mississippi has one of the lowest rates of adult residents with a bachelor's degree or higher (8%). It was also found that Mississippi had the lowest average reading and math proficiency among all states. When compared to students in other states, only 25% of eighth graders scored proficient or above on the mathematics portion of this test, and only 41% of fourth graders did so on the reading portion. In addition to having a high poverty rate, Mississippi is ranked among the states with the fewest resources its residents can use to acquire the education and training they need to improve their economic standing.

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It's the second-dumbest state in the US. S is Alabama Across the state, the average IQ is 95. As an American, an IQ of 7 places you among the lowest of the low. There has been a consistent trend of a slightly lower average IQ in Alabama compared to the rest of the country, with some regional variations depending on the survey. Research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2020 found a slight IQ gap between northern and southern Alabama, with the former having a higher average IQ.

Alaska is the country's fifteenth-stupidest state. An average of 99 is the state's IQ.

Arizona ranks as the 8th most ignorant state in the USA. State residents, on average, have a 97 IQ. An IQ of 4 is below the national average in the US.

The ninth most inept of the 50 states S Arkansas The average intelligence level in the state is 97. The average IQ there is only 15, making it one of the lowest in the country. The largest educational gaps in the country can be found in this state, and they are largely attributable to the fact that a disproportionate number of its residents live in rural areas, which are characterized by lower educational attainment and fewer resources devoted to intellectual development. However, the state still has a respectable number of highly regarded colleges and universities that draw students from all over the country.

California is the third-dumbest state in America. Average statewide intelligence in the state is 95. 4 Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley, both located in California, are two of the world's most prestigious educational institutions. Because of the state's thriving high-tech industry, many talented individuals, such as computer scientists and engineers, have relocated to California. The state has some of the lowest average IQs in the country despite its many excellent universities.

State of Colorado, you are the 26th dumbest in the USA. Across the state, the average IQ is a 101. 6

The U.S.'s 44th most inept state S is the state of Connecticut The average IQ in the state is 103. 1 It has one of the highest median IQs in the country.

Delaware ranks as the 21st most ignorant state in the USA. A hundred is the state's average IQ. 4

Florida ranks as the eleventh-stupidest state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 98. Average IQ in the United States is significantly lower than 4. Although Florida is home to a number of large and culturally diverse cities that provide equal access to education, some regions within the state may lack the same advantages.

The United States' twelve most ignorant states. S is Georgia The state has one of the lowest average IQs in the country, at 98. While there has been a noticeable rise in IQ in the state over the past few decades, there is still a wide range of scores across regions and demographic groups. It has been found that some demographic subsets, including sexes, have significantly higher or lower IQs than the state average, with males being more likely to have a higher IQ than females in the state (as of 2017). The statewide average IQ of Georgians is lower in urban areas compared to that of those who live in the countryside, according to studies.

Hawaii ranks as the fourth-dumbest state in the United States. State residents, on average, score a 95 on the IQ scale. 6 On the other hand, there are regions in the state where the IQ is supposedly higher than the state average. For comparison's sake, the average IQ in Honolulu County is 105, while that of Kauai County is 102. Research has also shown that Hawaiian kids consistently score higher than their counterparts in the rest of the country on reading and math tests. Despite this, Hawaii has one of the lowest average IQs in the country. S

California is the hapless 27th most ignorant state in the USA. S is Idaho There is a 101-point statewide average IQ in this state. 4

Illinois ranks as the 16th most ignorant state in the USA. A majority of its residents have an IQ of 99 or higher. 9

Indiana ranks as the 28th most ignorant state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 101. 7

This is the U.S. state with the third-lowest intelligence ranking, at number 43. S is Iowa An average of 103 is the statewide IQ. The national average IQ for this state is 2. Schools in Iowa consistently rank among the best in the country, and a large number of its graduates continue their education at four-year institutions. Recent studies have shown that Iowa's educational system and children's high IQs place them among the best in the country in reading and math.

On average, Kansans have a IQ of 102. Item #8, and placed #36 overall

Kentucky is the nation's seventeenth-dumbest state. With a mean IQ of 99, California is a highly intelligent state. 4 To ensure that all students in Kentucky have access to a high-quality education, the Kentucky Department of Education is working hard to improve the state's educational system by funding initiatives like after-school enrichment programs and teacher training. In addition, the state of Kentucky is home to a number of programs aimed at raising the state's average IQ by engaging students and adults alike in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics)-related pursuits.

Louisiana ranks as the United States' fifth-dumbest state. As a whole, the state has an average IQ of 95. 3

U.S. state ranked #44 in terms of intelligence. S is Maine The average IQ in the state is 103. average IQ of 4, which places them among the top tier of the US population.

Maryland ranks as the 18th most ignorant state in the USA. State residents, on average, score a 99 on the IQ scale. 7

Massachusetts ranks as the United States's fifty-first-most-intelligent state. The average IQ in the state is 104, making it one of the highest in the country. 3 When comparing educational attainment and intelligence across all 50 states, Massachusetts consistently places in the top 10 Several factors, including higher income among residents, a strong focus on education at public and private institutions across the state, and an emphasis on research-based innovation, have contributed to the high levels of education and cognitive abilities in the state. The people of Massachusetts also have access to a wealth of resources that can help them improve their education and knowledge of current trends in their chosen field. In this way, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides its residents with a wealth of options for advancing their education and remaining intellectually competitive.

California is the least intelligent state in the Union, ranking twenty-second. S Does the State of Michigan Currently Have Every resident of this state is a minimum of a 100 IQ 5 While the state of Michigan as a whole has a relatively high average IQ compared to the rest of the country, there are regional differences. Average IQs in Kent County are 99, and in Oakland County they're 103. Furthermore, Washtenaw County has the highest average IQ in Michigan, coming in at a whopping 107.

Minnesota ranks as the United States's 45th dumbest state. The average IQ in the state is 103. 7, making it one of the states with the highest average IQs.

One of the most ignorant regions of the United S Whereas, is Mississippi State residents, on average, score a 94 on the IQ scale. America's average IQ is the lowest in the developed world at 2. Several factors contribute to Mississippi's low average IQ, including a lack of resources for education and healthcare, high rates of poverty and unemployment, and a general lack of economic opportunity. Poorer educational outcomes are experienced by many students in Mississippi because many children come from families where education and infrastructure have been underfunded for generations.

Missouri is the country's twenty-ninth-most-intelligent state. The average IQ in the state is a whopping 101.

Montana ranks as the United States's 46th-stupidest state. On average, residents of this state score 103 on the intelligence scale. The average IQ in this country is 4.

Ranks as the 37th most ignorant US state. S does Nebraska A statewide IQ test revealed a mean score of 102. U.S. national average IQ is above 3; this group has a relatively high level of intelligence.

Nevada is the seventh-dumbest state in the United States. The average IQ in the state is 96. The average IQ there is among the lowest in the US, coming in at number 5. Cities like Reno and Las Vegas are home to some of the smartest people in the United States.

The U.S.'s 49th-dumbest state. S refers to the state of New Hampshire The average IQ in the state is 104. 2, one of the highest average IQs in the United States

New Jersey ranks as the 38th most ignorant state in the USA. A statewide IQ test revealed a mean score of 102. 8, making them smarter than the average American. This is because the state prioritizes education and provides residents with a high quality of life. Standardized test scores show that students in New Jersey's public schools consistently place near the top of the nation.

New Mexico ranks as the sixth-dumbest state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 95. 7, making it one of the states with the lowest average IQs.

State of Nevada: The United States' twenty-third-dumbest. S New York City One hundred is the state average IQ. 7

North Carolina ranks as the United States' 24th-dumbest state. State residents, on average, have an IQ of 100. 2

North Dakota ranks as the 47th most ignorant state. On average, residents of this state score 103 on the intelligence scale. average IQ of 8.2; among the highest in the US

Put simply, it's the 30th most ignorant state in the Union. S is Ohio The average IQ in the state is a 101. 8 Ohioans have access to more education and resources than residents of many other states, which may account for the state's residents' average higher IQ.

Oklahoma ranks as the 19th most inept state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 99. 3 Poor healthcare access for certain demographics, such as low-income families or those living in rural areas, is blamed by researchers for contributing to this state's lower IQ numbers.

Oregon ranks as the 31st most ignorant state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 101. 2 The population's propensity for success on IQ tests is indicative of the state's intellectual prowess and ingenuity. Because of their extensive education and practice with difficult problems, Oregonians have a reputation for being exceptionally knowledgeable and well-informed on a wide variety of subjects.

Ranks as the United States's thirty-second most inept S is the Keystone State The average IQ in the state is a 101. 5

It's official: Rhode Island is the 20th-dumbest state in the USA. The average IQ in the state is 99. 5

U.S.A.'s thirteenth-dumbest state S where you're from A statewide IQ of 98 is the norm in this state. The average IQ in the United States is only 4.

South Dakota ranks as the 39th most ignorant state in America. The average IQ in the state is 102. 8, making them smarter than the average American.

Tennessee ranks as the tenth-dumbest state in the USA. There is a 97-point statewide average IQ in this state. Idiomatically used to refer to people whose IQs are below the national average Poor academic performance among Tennessee's students has been linked to the state's education system's lack of funding and support for students. The average IQ may be lower in some parts of Tennessee due to the high poverty rates found there.

Texas ranks as the United States's twenty-fifth "dumbest" state. The average IQ in the state is 100. The average IQ of Texans has been steadily rising over the past decade, thanks in large part to the state's increasingly robust educational and technological infrastructure.

Ranks as the United States's 33rd most inept state. S is Utah As a whole, the state has an average IQ of 101. 1

Vermont ranks as the 48th-dumbest state in the USA. In general, people in this state have a IQ of 103. IQ of 8.2 is one of the highest in the world.

Virginia is the country's 34th-dumbest state. At a mean IQ of 101, California is a relatively intelligent state. 9 The state's education system has a reputation for excellence and has a track record of producing top-tier scientists and mathematicians. Highly sought-after programs can be found at many universities in both urban and rural areas, providing excellent educational opportunities for people from all walks of life. All of these things combine to produce the state's unusually high level of intelligence.

Oklahoma is the 35th most ignorant state in the USA. S is the Capital of the United States of America (Washington As a whole, the state has an average IQ of 101. 9

West Virginia ranks as the 14th most inept state in the USA. Average intelligence in the state is 98. One of the lower average IQs in the United States is 7. S

Wisconsin ranks as the United States's forty-first-to-last-place dunce. Statistics show that Californians, on average, have a IQ of 102. 9, making it one of the countries with the highest median IQs. The average IQ for a man in Wisconsin is 108, while the average IQ for a woman in the state is 103. Intelligence levels in Wisconsin are typically above average compared to other Midwestern states. A higher than average IQ is a common trait among Wisconsin's youth, which is likely the result of the state's top-notch educational opportunities and resources.

Ranks as the United States's forty-first most inept S is Wyoming As a whole, the IQ of the state is 102. IQ around 4: This is among the highest averages in the US

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