Men have bigger brains, but women’s are more efficient
BRAVE men sometimes like to joke that their other halves have smaller brains.
But women perform better in memory tests despite the fact that men do actually have larger brains, experts say.
That’s even though men have a higher IQ by nearly four points, a study found.
The research from the Netherlands found male brains are around 14 per cent larger.
The study, led by Erasmus University, found women are less intelligent than men by approximately 3.75 IQ points and do significantly worse in tests of spatial ability.
Lead author Dr Dimitri van der Linden said: ‘We found that men’s brains are larger than women’s and our analysis suggests this is the reason for lower average general intelligence across a range of tests.
‘We are aware of previous research suggesting women’s brains are better organised or process information more efficiently.’
Scientists took MRI scans and cognitive tests from 896 people aged 22 to 37 as part of the Human Connectome Project.
Published in the journal Intelligence, the research says men had higher scores on most measures of intelligence, including spatial awareness. Women did better in memory tests but analysis found this made no difference to their general intelligence.
Brain size in the sexes is hotly debated by scientists.
Dr Joseph Devlin, head of experimental psychology at University College London, said: ‘This is a well-researched study but the evidence is not strong enough to prove larger male brains are more intelligent than smaller female brains.’
University of California research found women’s brains are smaller but could perform more quickly because of better connections between brain cells.