Sex Differences in Memory and Other Cognitive Abilities

University dissertation from Psykologiska institutionen

Abstract: The aim of the present thesis was to study sex differences in memory and other cognitive bilities in healthy adults. In Study I, participants performed a number of episodic memory tasks that were more or less verbal in nature. Results showed that women performed on a higher level than did men in the episodic memory tasks where it was possible to use verbal labels, whereas men performed on a higher level than did women in a visuospatial episodic memory task. In Study II, women’s advantage in face recognition was investigated.Results showed that women performed at a higher level than did men only in the recognition of other women’s faces. In Study III, sex differences in cognitive tasks as well as brain measures were investigated in healthy older adults. Results showed that only the sex differences in a motor task could, to some extent, be explained by sex differences in one of the brain measures. The findings, as well as possible explanations for these patterns of results, are discussed in a theoretical context.