Gender Differences in Dispositional Attributes, Psychological Adjustments, and Appraisals
There is currently a significant amount of research being conducted to pinpoint differences between men and women and they way they think, emote, and experience life. While the current literature has uncovered significant differences between men in women in terms of their expectations, priorities, and characteristics, there has not been data yet that has discovered systematic differences in the underlying appraisals that comprise our emotional experiences. The purpose of this current study was to find systematic differences in emotional experience between men and women when participating in a math test. Then we examined if these differences in emotional response could be explained by appraisals, and further, see if these appraisals could be explained by differences in dispositional factors. The first substudy was an analysis of dispositional sex differences by aggregating surveys completed by university students throughout the past few decades with a variety of measures assessing personality factors and psychological outcomes. Looking at mean scores and correlations between personality factors and psychological outcomes, we discovered significant differences between the way men and women approach and react to various situations. Our second substudy consisted of a math test with manipulated levels of difficulty and assessments of appraisals and emotions whilst participating in the math study. Results from this substudy showed no significant differences in appraisal or emotional experiences. Therefore, we were able to highlight underlying dispositional factors and psychological outcomes that differed for men and women, but we did not find any differences in emotions and appraisals. A future direction is proposed to address this issue.
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