Man Brain Vs. Female Brain. What's the difference?


| 3 Comments
May I start out this blog post saying how much I love Reddit.com sometimes? Sure it has it's bad parts (there are some sub reddits that should be avoided, trust me) but it also has some pretty cool stuff and even very funny stuff. But it also has some very informative stuff as well, such as the topic of this blog post where I got on the sub Reddit r/science. If I could give anyone advice for finding a topic to write about for these blogs, r/science is probably a good place to look.

But anyway, back to the main point of this post. The human brain is a remarkable thing that we humans posses. It is the central control room of the body, are own personal super computer if you will. It is the one part of the body that controls who we are and is unique to each individual. But one question that has been asked plenty of times in the past is whether or not the brains of males are different in ways to the brains of females. Many scientists have made the conclusion that is the case, but now a recent study on brains may be the most conclusive of evidence that we have seen: that there are indeed many differences between the brains of males and females.

This article explains how they scanned a male and a female brain 1000 times and saw how the brain process different things and painted a neural path of brain functions. The neural map that they made for females and males can be seen below:

Brains.jpg
As you can see, the neural paths compiled for each brain are very different and process information in tasks in different ways. As the article states, the neural map women showed a strong connection between the right and left parts of the brain, while the men showed a strong connection between the front and back half of the brain. These differences are pretty clear, but it is something else about the findings that has one of the scientists on the team surprised.

One of the researchers, Ragini Verma said that she was surprised on how the results of the brain scans and the mapping of the neural network of the brains supported old stereotypes that people have made about men and women with the men's brain being better at perception and co-ordinated activities while women are wired more social skills and memory as well as multi-tasking.

Verma says that: "If you look at functional studies, the left of the brain is more for logical thinking, the right of the brain is for more intuitive thinking. So if there's a task that involves doing both of those things, it would seem that women are hardwired to do those better," Verma said. "Women are better at intuitive thinking. Women are better at remembering things. When you talk, women are more emotionally involved - they will listen more. I was surprised that it matched a lot of the stereotypes that we think we have in our heads. If I wanted to go to a chef or a hairstylist, they are mainly men" (Verma, 2013).

So as you can see, this study pretty much confirms what most scientists have been thinking for a while when it comes to the brain: that the different sexes have different functioning brains with each sex having stronger sections then the other and it proves that they both work in different ways as seen by the two neural maps that have been made from this study. But this study may in fact gave us some proof to prove some of the stereotypes that Verma has mentioned and maybe debunked them as possible stereotypes. But none the less, brains are a powerful organ in our body and everyone's brain is unique in some way.



3 Comments

Tyler, I liked your article a lot. I definitely thought the picture helped in visualizing the differences in neural connections between men and women. I'm interested in the brains that were scanned. How many of each gender were chosen and is there a difference when looking at different ages or races, or even socio-economic backgrounds. Also, this study might be able to explain why certain fields are dominated by one gender, like how STEM fields are stereotypically masculine fields. This article claims that there is no fixed male vs female brain, but that the brain is variable and can be affected by genes, hormones, environment (both in utero and during life).

Tyler, I liked your article a lot. I definitely thought the picture helped in visualizing the differences in neural connections between men and women. I'm interested in the brains that were scanned. How many of each gender were chosen and is there a difference when looking at different ages or races, or even socio-economic backgrounds. Also, this study might be able to explain why certain fields are dominated by one gender, like how STEM fields are stereotypically masculine fields. This article claims that there is no fixed male vs female brain, but that the brain is variable and can be affected by genes, hormones, environment (both in utero and during life).

I was about to write a blog about this article when I saw it on r/science, but then I saw that you had beat me to it! I thought the study was really interesting. College kids might like reading it because the difference between men and women is a common topic of conversation. I'll post a link to the study itself because it's a really interesting read:

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2013/11/27/1316909110

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