Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Men and Woman

I've written a number of times about the persistent difference found in studies of political knowledge when comparing the scores of men and women.  Guys, it seems, always seem to beat the gals.  And I've also written about some interesting approaches to explain (away) this difference.  One is in the kinds of questions asked.  When female politicians are used in knowledge questions, for example, the gap lessens. Also, men guess more and, given how knowledge surveys are often scored, that helps men.

Here I report on a study that shows it's not just a U.S. thing.  A survey in China, summarized here, finds the same difference between the sexes. 

Me, I avoid this argument, in part because my major professor from grad school, Mary Ann Ferguson, always told me to avoid attempting to explain sex differences in social science research.  She also hated content analysis, calling it the great intellectual cul-de-sac.

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