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ERIC Number: ED263493
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Aug
Pages: 18
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Factors Influencing Sex Differences in Spatial Ability during Adolescence.
Petersen, Anne C.; Crockett, Lisa
Research on the emergence of sex differences in spatial ability during early adolescence prompted a meta-analysis of 172 spatial ability studies conducted since 1974. The meta-analysis confirmed that there are actually several spatial abilities, that some types of spatial ability show marked sex differences while others show none, and that spatial constructs manifesting sex differences show them as early as the construct has been measured. Studies in the meta-analysis were divided according to three spatial constructs: mental rotation, spatial perception, and spatial organization. Significant sex differences, in favor of males, were found in mental rotation and spatial perception. A longitudinal study of 335 young adolescents revealed strong sex effects (males higher) and grade effects (8>7>6) on the Primary Mental Abilities Test. Another study of 135 high school seniors revealed a timing of puberty effect showing better spatial ability among late maturers on the Embedded Figures Test. Some sex differences in test strategy were found. It was also found that adolescents, especially boys, who participated in spatial activities did better on spatial tasks. These analyses suggest that sex differences in mental rotation skill emerge before adolescence and are little affected by adolescent development and socialization. It is possible that both biological and social factors could account for the observed sex differences. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A