The Role Gender Plays in Spatial Navigation and Recall Ability
Nichani, Rhea Anil
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Memory recall in order to complete certain tasks such as spatial navigation, and, in turn prospective planning, is largely necessary for day-to-day activities which require travel. Due to various factors, females and males, may react to the stress of spatial navigation differently. In fact, it is said that females tend to perform worse on spatial navigation tasks but tend to react better to stressful situations, in general. Hence, one hypothesis is that females will be more likely to revert back to habitual methods to reach their destination, rather than to think on their feet in order to create a novel shortcut that may help them reach their destination more efficiently and effectively. Alternatively, the evidence for better performance in some tasks in females under stress might lead to the opposite prediction. My report below details a pilot study in a preliminary sample of ten participants, to be continued post-graduation, that goes on to study spatial navigation gender differences by using a virtual spatial navigation and memory task. I test in this pilot sample whether there is evidence males and females differentially prefer habitual routes or shortcut routes when travelling to a destination.