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Do Men and Women Really See Things Differently?

based on 16 ratings
Author: Megan Doyle, Ph.D.

Grade Level: Middle School/High School; Type: Social Science

Objective:

Discover gender differences in processing visual information.

Research Questions:

  • Are there differences in what men and women recall after seeing a busy image?
  • Are women more likely to remember certain parts of the image, while men are more likely to remember other parts? What does this tell you about the way men and women perceive the world?

Do women and men process visual information differently? This experiment will evaluate this question and explore the differences in how the two genders describe a very busy, complicated image.

Materials:

  • Computer
  • Different images to construct a picture (include numbers, letters, different items, and a variety of people)
  • Notebook for recording results

Experimental Procedure:

  1. Construct a picture using many different images. Include numbers, letters, different items, and a variety of people.
  2. Ask many different men and women to study the image for 10 seconds.
  3. Give participants one minute to list everything they saw in the picture.
  4. Evaluate the results. Study the first five items listed by each participant. What types of things do women tend to list first? How does this differ from lists written by men?

Terms/Concepts: Visual perception; How might gender influence what a person sees and remembers in an image?

References: “Hunter Gatherer Brains Make Men and Women See Things Differently,” The Telegraph

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