University of Tasmania
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Sex differences in multi-tasking : Stroop effects on movement symmetry

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posted on 2023-05-27, 09:46 authored by Cochrane, AG
There is a strong stereotype throughout the world that females are better at multi-tasking than males, despite mixed research evidence. A recent study involved simultaneous performance of a Stroop task with walking and found that young females suffered less consequence to movement than males and older females (Killeen et al., 2017). In the present study, 41 young adults (21 females) aged 18-40 participated in the study, performed a novel bimanual coordination task in an antiphase movement pattern, while simultaneously performing a Stroop task. In contrast to Killeen and colleagues (2017) results, there were no differences between males and females in asymmetry as Stroop difficulty increased. One surprising difference was found in the frequency measure, whereby males and females increased frequency as Stroop difficulty increased, but females did not increase as much as males. This may be evidence of females being better at multi-tasking than males. Therefore, in line with the majority of multi-tasking research, the present study found limited evidence of sex differences in multi-tasking, and sex differences that were found had a small effect size.


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