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Anorak | Men Really Are Better At Maths Than Women

Men Really Are Better At Maths Than Women

by | 30th, July 2014

And no, it’s not just because of what Barbie said, “Math is hard”. We really are seeing evidence in empirical (that is, when people go out and study the real world rather than just theorising in ivory towers) studies that men are, on average, better at maths than women on average. But do not that this is about averages: plenty of women are better than most to nearly all men at maths. This tells us nothing about any one individual however true it might be of the population:

Men’s and women’s brains really are different.

Researchers say that if both sexes had access to the same levels of education, they’d expect women to do best on tests of memory – and men to excel at maths.

The prediction comes after an analysis of how the sexes’ abilities varied across Europe across time.

More than 31,000 men and women aged 50-plus from 13 countries were put through three tests of brainpower.

They did all the things you should do, controlling for education levels for example (this being very important as it wasn’t all that many decades ago that women in southern Europe were educated to a very different standard than men. Where I live in rural Portugal it’s not unusual to find women in their 60s or 70s who are profoundly, completely, illiterate and innumerate).

And they found that in verbal ability it all looked about the same, in maths men were better and in memory women were. All of which solves one great confusion of modern life, why can women remember anniversaries and birthdays and men not? But which leaves us with another: why can men not calculate these things with their better maths?



Posted: 30th, July 2014 | In: Money Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink