Gender Differences in Wayfinding Strategies and Anxiety About Wayfinding: A Cross-Cultural Comparison

Abstract

Two studies examined gender and cultural differences in wayfinding strategies and anxiety about wayfinding. Men in both Hungary and the United States reported greater preference for a strategy of orienting to global reference points, whereas women reported greater preference for a strategy based on route information. A higher level of wayfinding anxiety was reported by Americans, and women in both countries reported greater wayfinding anxiety than did men. Women in the United States, but not in Hungary, reported less childhood wayfinding experience than did men; women in both countries reported feeling less safe than did men. Feeling of personal safety and wayfinding strategy preferences mediated the gender difference in wayfinding anxiety.

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Lawton, C.A., Kallai, J. Gender Differences in Wayfinding Strategies and Anxiety About Wayfinding: A Cross-Cultural Comparison. Sex Roles 47, 389–401 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1021668724970

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  • gender
  • wayfinding
  • spatial cognition