Why women are better at remembering tasks-to-do
London: Now is the time to finally listen to your wife as women are better than men at remembering things to do, a new study finds.
The study involved putting 100 men and women through a battery of memory tests. These judged prospective memory; that is remembering to carry out plans.
The volunteers, who were aged between 15 and 40, found it harder to remember to do things the further they were into the future, Daily Mail reported.
The females also excelled at remembering plans that involved doing, rather than saying, something.
“A real life example of this would be, in a family, you would expect the woman to be the one to remember to buy some milk after work,” researcher Liana Palermo from the Aston University in Birmingham was quoted as saying.
“Or she will remember to give a book back to a friend when she sees him next. She will be better at all of these kind of tasks than a man,” Palermo added.
Palermo said the gender difference may be down to differences in hormones or brain structure.
The brain’s memory hub shrinks in men, but not in women, between the ages of 20 and 40.
“An alternative hypothesis is that the gender differences we found could be due to the care-taking role often assumed by women and the fact that in addition to work responsibilities, women also have more responsibilities at home,” Palermo said.
“As a consequence of this social role, in daily life women might perform tasks involving prospective memory more than men, enhancing their performance in remembering to remember.”
The study was published in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology.