Gender Differences in Acquisition of Environmental Knowledge Related to Wayfinding Behavior, Spatial Anxiety and Self-Estimated Environmental Competencies

Gender Differences in Acquisition of Environmental Knowledge Related to Wayfinding Behavior,... This study investigated gender differences inwayfinding and representation of an unfamiliar building.Thirty-two white German adults (undergraduates,graduates, academic staff, carpenters, social workers) carried out three wayfinding runs, eachfollowed by a representation task either of drawing amap or of writing a description of the environment.Self-estimation of spatial anxiety and environmentalcompetencies was assessed before the task. Men recalled moreroute directions in maps and descriptions than women.Independent from element quantity, women preferredlandmarks to route directions under both conditions. Men preferred mixed representations withsimilar proportions of landmarks and route directions intheir first and second representation and showed a weaklandmark preference only in the last representation. Route direction preferences related to higherspeed in wayfinding (more men) and higherself-estimation of wayfinding competence. Landmarkpreferences related, in women only, to higherself-estimated levels of spatial anxiety. Speed in wayfinding,self-estimation of competencies, and spatial anxietyoverlapped predictability of gender on differences inenvironmental representation. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

Gender Differences in Acquisition of Environmental Knowledge Related to Wayfinding Behavior, Spatial Anxiety and Self-Estimated Environmental Competencies

Sex Roles , Volume 41 (2) – Sep 30, 2004
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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers-Plenum Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 1999 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1018837808724
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This study investigated gender differences inwayfinding and representation of an unfamiliar building.Thirty-two white German adults (undergraduates,graduates, academic staff, carpenters, social workers) carried out three wayfinding runs, eachfollowed by a representation task either of drawing amap or of writing a description of the environment.Self-estimation of spatial anxiety and environmentalcompetencies was assessed before the task. Men recalled moreroute directions in maps and descriptions than women.Independent from element quantity, women preferredlandmarks to route directions under both conditions. Men preferred mixed representations withsimilar proportions of landmarks and route directions intheir first and second representation and showed a weaklandmark preference only in the last representation. Route direction preferences related to higherspeed in wayfinding (more men) and higherself-estimation of wayfinding competence. Landmarkpreferences related, in women only, to higherself-estimated levels of spatial anxiety. Speed in wayfinding,self-estimation of competencies, and spatial anxietyoverlapped predictability of gender on differences inenvironmental representation.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Sep 30, 2004

References

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