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Empathizing-systemizing cognitive styles: Effects of sex and academic degree

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Kidron, Rachel 
Kaganovskiy, Leon 


This study tests if the drives to empathize (E) and systemize (S), measured by the Systemizing Quotient-Revised (SQ-R) and Empathy Quotient (EQ), show effects of sex and academic degree. The responses of 419 students from the Humanities and the Physical Sciences were analyzed in terms of the E-S theory predictions. Results confirm that there is an interaction between sex, degree and the drive to empathize relative to systemize. Female students in the Humanities on average had a stronger drive to empathize than to systemize in comparison to males in the Humanities. Male students in the Sciences on average had a stronger drive to systemize than to empathize in comparison to females in the Sciences. Finally, students in the sciences on average had a stronger drive to systemize more than to empathize, irrespective of their sex. The reverse is true for students in the Humanities. These results strongly replicate earlier findings.



5205 Social and Personality Psychology, 52 Psychology, Adult, Career Choice, Cognition, Educational Status, Empathy, Female, Humanities, Humans, Male, Natural Science Disciplines, Personality, Sex Factors, Students, Surveys and Questionnaires, Young Adult

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Public Library of Science (PLoS)
SBC was supported by the Autism Research Trust and the MRC and Wellcome Trust during the period of this work. The research was conducted in association with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care East of England at Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust.