Left is never right. Handedness and differences in spatial ability

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McCarthy, Noirin
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BA (Hons) in Psychology
Dublin Business School
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This study investigated differences in performance on two spatial tasks between left and right-handed groups. It was predicted there would be a relationship between self-efficacy and scores on spatial tasks. Gender differences were examined. In an Internet study, mixed between participants and correlational design, 26 left-handed and 21 right-handed participants completed a spatial orientation task, a mental rotation test, a handedness questionnaire and a self-efficacy scale. The analyses showed significant gender differences in the spatial orientation task, males showed lower error rates. It is proposed; females may have lacked opportunities to develop different cognitive strategies for spatial problem solving. No significant differences were found between handedness groups. Sub-classification of handedness is suggested for future research, variability in spatial ability may be detected if participants are identified on a spectrum of handedness. No relationship was found between self-efficacy and scores in spatial tasks. Suggests, a technology rich society fosters self-efficacy in spatial ability. Author keywords: Spatial abilty, handedness, sex differences in spatial ability