PROBLEM: Previous studies — and far too many sexist jokes — have discussed how women are not as skilled as men when it comes to tasks like parking and map-reading that require spatial awareness. University of Warwick psychologist Zachary Estes decided to find out if confidence could account for this gender difference.
METHODOLOGY: Together with University of Georgia Health Center’s Sydney Felker, Estes recruited 545 students for four experiments involving a 3-D mental rotation task that measures a person’s spatial skills. In one key trial, the authors manipulated each respondent’s level of confidence by either complimenting or criticizing their performance in an unrelated exercise before administering this test.
Read the whole story: The Atlantic