Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Women are better at multitasking than men

An age-old belief that men are incapable of doing more than one thing at once may be true after all --a new study has shown that that men really are worse at multitasking than women, although it does depend on the task.

Multitasking - The ability of a person to perform more than one task at the same time. The term is derived from computer multitasking. An example of multitasking is listening to a radio interview while typing an email. Some believe that multitasking can result in time wasted due to human context switching and apparently causing more errors due to insufficient attention. Other research illustrates our brains are capable dealing with certain 'dual multiple tasks' at the same time.

Psychologists have proven that men really are worse at multitasking than women. Researchers decided to test the truth of the commonly held belief after discovering that no scientific research had ever been done into it.
Scientists believe that the results show that females are better able to reflect upon a problem, while continuing to juggle their other commitments, than men.

During the study, Professor Keith Laws, a psychologist at the University of Hertfordshire, who led the research, and colleagues found that when women and men work on a number of simple tasks - such as searching for a key or doing easy maths problems - at the same time, the women significantly outperformed the men.

Scientists believe that the results show that females are better able to reflect upon a problem, while continuing to juggle their other commitments, than men.

"We have all heard stories that either men can't multitask or that women are exceptionally good at multitasking," the Telegraph quoted Laws as saying.

"But there didn't appear to be any empirical evidence for this. It was all based upon folklore and hearsay when I looked through the scientific literature," Laws added.

As part of the study, Laws gave 50 male and 50 female students eight minutes to perform three tasks at the same time: carrying out simple maths problems, finding restaurants on a map and sketching a strategy for how they would search for a lost key in an imaginary field.

As they performed the tasks, the volunteers also received a phone call that they could either chose to answer or not. If they did answer, they were given an additional general knowledge test while they continued to carry out their other activities.

While women were able to perform well in all four activities at once, men performed, on average, worse when it came to planning to search for the key.

Read in Urdu : اردو میں پڑھئے

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