On several YouTube videos, one being this one, the descriptions of these videos include something like:

Recent studies have shown that almost HALF of over 1000 adults tested were unable to pass a maths test designed for FIFTH GRADERS! We put this to the test - can YOU pass a test designed for fifth graders? To pass, you must answer SIX of the seven questions correctly!

I've seen this claim repeatedly repeated on many videos, but I've found no basis in scientific research. Did these studies ever actually take place?

  • 2
    Can we get a link to the test itself? That may help.
    – JasonR
    Commented Mar 8, 2016 at 16:12
  • 3
    Wat? The test you linked to is significantly steeper than any test I had to do in 5th grade. We didn't learn percentages till like 7th grade I think. I don't think basic algebra till 6th. There are even 5th and 6th graders commenting on that youtube page saying they hadn't learned all (or even half) of that. I got all the questions except the one on something about having more than one value (probably langauge barrier.) But I believe 500 out of 1000 adults could fail this test, mostly depending on their age (actually the younger the likelier they are to succeed, because of education)
    – Cestarian
    Commented Mar 9, 2016 at 21:08
  • 1
    @JasonR I am in Iceland; but the problem with this question is that it is super subjective, because adults can be any age 18+, or depending on point of view 20+. And people who were born 100 years ago and people who were born 50 years ago and people who were born 20 years ago all went through significantly different education material and systems (if they had any at all!) I would be surprised if math for 5th grade was still as easy as it was when I was learning it 13 years ago in my country.
    – Cestarian
    Commented Mar 9, 2016 at 21:49
  • 1
    I couldn't remember what math was like for me in 5th grade (do most people?). Looking up the curriculum, percentages haven't been taught yet. Variables appeared in the curriculum I looked up, but I don't recall learning those until I think 6th or 7th grade (?). I seem to recall things being pretty sluggish until high school. This is for Canada.
    – Kat
    Commented Mar 13, 2016 at 0:06
  • 2
    @Mark really? I learned mode in third grade in Florida, and we don't even have particularly high standards.
    – fi12
    Commented Mar 17, 2016 at 2:15


You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .