Great finding! Yes, cognitive things are deeply mingled with social setting. Here is a daily example: for a kid, foods taste differently with or without peer eating together.
Our cognitive abilities and decision-making skills can be dramatically hindered in social settings where we feel that we are being ranked or assigned a status level, such as classrooms and work environments, according to new findings from a team of researchers from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and four other institutions.
This study tells us the idea that IQ is something we can reliably measure in isolation without considering how it interacts with social context is essentially flawed. Furthermore, this suggests that the idea of a division between social and cognitive processing in the brain is really pretty artificial. The two deeply interact with each other.
A group of participants suffered an average IQ drop of 17.4 points during an experiment in which they were ranked by their intelligence scores, suggesting that simply being ranked can profoundly diminish some people’s ability to express their cognitive ability, says a team led by Read Montague of Virginia Tech. Not everyone in the experiment responded this way—some participants’ scores even improved. Individual differences in social sensitivity may play an important role in shaping intelligence, the researchers say.