Sex differences in comparison and decision processes when matching strings of symbols

  • Majeres R
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The speeded matching of strings of digits and letters was studied in three experiments with college students to determine the influence of memory load and encoding on sex differences in performance. In Experiment 1 (49 males, 48 females), short digit strings (two, three, and four digits) to reduce the load on working memory, resulted in significant (p < .01) sex differences showing that memory demands are not critical for observing the sex difference. Experiment 2 (50 males, 49 females) using longer strings (eight, ten, and 12 digits), significant (p < .05) sex differences were found with horizontally arranged strings, but not with vertically arranged strings. This result was interpreted as due to a change in the type of encoding used with the vertical arrangement. In Experiment 3 (90 males, 91 females), significant (p < .01) sex differences were found on letter strings with both horizontal and vertical arrangements. Results were interpreted in terms of a sex difference in comparison processes that are influenced by the type of code used in making the comparisons. © 1990.

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  • Raymond L. Majeres

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