Gender differences in face recognition: The role of interest and friendship

University essay from Stockholms universitet/Psykologiska institutionen


Women outperform men in face recognition and are especially good at recognizing other females’ faces. This may be caused by a larger female interest in faces. The aims of this study were to investigate if women were more interested in female faces and if depth of friendship was related to face recognition. Forty-one women and 16 men completed two face recognition tasks: one in which the faces shown earlier had been presented one at a time, and one where they had been shown two and two. The Network of Relationships Inventory was used to assess depth of friendships. As hypothesized, but not statistically significant, women tended to recognize more female faces when faces were presented two and two. No relationships were found between depth of friendships and face recognition. The results gave some support for the previously untested hypothesis that interest has importance in women’s recognition of female faces.

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