London: A gene that affects memory and IQ among students has been identified, say researchers. Chun-Yen Chang, an education researcher at National Taiwan Normal University in Taipei, says that teens with a particular mutation in the COMT gene have been found to score significantly lower on a national placement exam, compared with students who had other versions of the gene.Each year, a high-stakes exam in Taiwan determines which of the students taking it will go to a prestigious public senior high school or more middling private and vocational schools.About 310,000 16- and 17-year-olds sit the exam every year. Chang highlights the fact that pupils are under extreme pressure to perform well in the test, and many employ tutors and practise for years leading up to the exam.
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