Perspective changing in primary and secondary learning: A gender difference study

L. Piccardi, M. Risetti, R. Nori, A. Tanzilli, L. Bernardi, C. Guariglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the present study, we investigated the ability of 106 (55 males, 51 females) college students to recall an 8-step path from different viewpoints (0°; 90°; 180° and 270°) after primary and secondary learning without a time limit. For each participant, we computed the time and number of repetitions necessary to learn the path as well as his/her spatial style (landmark, route and survey) using the "Questionnaire on Spatial Representation" (Pazzaglia & De Beni, 2001). We found gender differences in secondary but not in primary learning. Our results support the hypothesis that gender differences emerge only in adverse learning conditions requiring strong spatial ability. Moreover, we observed that computing an individual learning time as well as the specific number of repetitions necessary to learn the environment reduced markedly the presence of individual differences, stressing the importance of the expertise effect in the environmental learning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-118
Number of pages5
JournalLearning and Individual Differences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • Gender differences
  • Learning time
  • Perspective changing
  • Primary and secondary learning
  • Spatial orientation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Education


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