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Interesting thread, XP
This is an old "nature vs nurture" chestnut in a way|
With the exception of Japan, which does not have emigration pressure, Asians migrate looking for a better life. This means that those who are relatively unable to emigrate stay at home. The more able ones, who wish to move, do so. The Professor only sees the offspring of these people, or at least, that is how he is portrayed.
In Australia, there is preferential migration for skilled migrants. Students also can gain permanent residency following their academic course, provided that it fits with the government agenda of "areas of need".
The skilled migrants speak for themselves. Their children are likely going to be brighter than the average student in Australia, because the skilled migrant is likely to be intelligent, educated and with superior motivation to succeed, passing all of this goodness on to the child.
The child, if born in Asia and youngish, will cling to the family, their network and mores, when in Australia. They will have a developmental experience concentrated in a relatively small sphere, at least, at first.. Socially, it will be hard to branch out beyond Asian immigrant culture for some time. This all draws the focus of the child to academic pursuits. And, as the child will be mixing with similar children, this will enhance their behaviour.
If the child is born in the foreign country, the child may well adopt the ways of the country, eg in Australia, becoming "Aussified". But this is only a dilution of the parents' ways, which still exert a natural force.
If the Professor is right, he needs to go to Asia. If his sample is just the students in front of him, back home in the Old Dart, then he's a knob.
And he should be duly informed.