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Twins' Academic Success and Classroom Situation Studied

Academic achievement same in shared or separate classrooms, supporting no blanket rulings

FRIDAY, Dec. 18 (HealthDay News) -- In twin children, sharing or not sharing classrooms during primary school years does not affect academic achievement, according to a study in the January issue of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Tinca Polderman, Ph.D., of VU University Amsterdam in the Netherlands, and colleagues studied 839 monozygotic and 1,164 dizygotic twin pairs who were listed at birth on The Netherlands Twin Register.

The researchers found that 72 percent of twins shared a classroom, 19 percent had separate classrooms, and 9 percent shared a classroom part of the time. After controlling for confounding factors, they found that there was no significant difference in educational achievement between separated and non-separated twin pairs, regardless of sex or zygosity.

"Based on the current study, one can conclude that there is no empirical evidence that cognitive achievement of twins depends on their classroom situation," the authors conclude. "Thus, the present results support a policy in which there is no blanket ruling. However, based on factors indicated by the parents, teachers, or children themselves, there may be important reasons to separate twins at school, or not."

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