Posts tagged with "Karolinska Institutet in Sweden"

If memory serves: Women have better ‘episodic recall’ than men

September 16, 2019

If a husband and his wife are leaving home to do some errands, chances are that he will not remember where he put the keys to the car, but she will not remember where the car is parked.

When it comes to specific events, a new study conducted by the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden backs the claim that women have better recall, according to a report by Study Finds.

But researchers say memories come in many forms, and men do have some advantages. While a female may have the edge when it comes to remembering a conversation or where she put her eyeglasses, a male is more likely to remember the directions to the mall. That’s because women fare better when it comes to episodic memory.

Episodic memory is the ability to remember events, such as what we did last week or whether we took our medication this morning. One of the most sensitive memory systems, it is impacted by lack of sleep, depression, and aging.

The researchers looked at numerous episodic memory studies conducted over three decades to uncover the truth behind the anecdotal reports of men being unable to remember as well as women such matters as whom they met, who said what, or where they last saw a missing object.

“The results show that there is a slight female advantage in episodic memory, and that advantage varies depending on which materials are to be remembered,” says lead study author Martin Asperholm, a doctoral student at the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at the university, in a statement.

The research group’s meta-analysis included 617 studies that were conducted between 1973 and 2013, and included more than 1.2 million participants.

Study authors explain that their results indicate women do have the edge when verbal processes are involved in memory making. This includes memories involving words, texts, objects, locations of objects and movies. Women are also better at remembering faces and recalling sensory memories, such as smells.

Men, on the other hand, are keen at remembering information involving spatial processing, such as how to find their way back from one location to another and also recollecting abstract images.

So if she tells you, “I told you so,” believe her. And if he tells you, “This is the right way,” follow him.

Findings are published in the journal, Psychological Bulletin.

Research contact: @StudyFindsorg