Walking in the Corsi test: Which type of memory do you need?

Laura Piccardi, Giuseppe Iaria, Maura Ricci, Filippo Bianchini, Laura Zompanti, Cecilia Guariglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sex differences are often reported in spatial abilities. However, some studies show conflicting results, which can be ascribed to the complexity of the variables involved in the visuo-spatial domain. Until a few years ago, it was widely accepted that men outperformed women on almost all spatial tasks. However, recently some studies [A. Postma, G. Jager, R.P.C. Kessels, H.P.F. Koppeschaar, J. van Honk, Sex differences for selective forms of spatial memory, Brain Cogn. 54 (2004) 24-34; D.H. McBurney, S.J.C. Gaulin, T. Devineni, C. Adams, Superior spatial memory of women: stronger evidence for the gathering hypothesis, Evol. Hum. Behav. 18 (1997) 165-174; Q. Rahman, G.D. Wilson, S. Abrahams, Sexual orientation related differences in spatial memory, J. Int. Neuropsychol. Soc. 9 (2003) 376-383] found sex differences for selective forms of spatial memory and described a female advantage in specific spatial abilities. In this paper, we studied sex differences by testing object locations and route memories with the Corsi Block-Tapping test (CBT), one of the non-verbal tasks most used in clinical settings, and its modified, large-scale version. Our results showed a performance advantage for males in both tests and a more homogeneous pattern of memory in females.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-131
Number of pages5
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 20 2008


  • Corsi Block-Tapping test (CBT)
  • Memory for object locations
  • Memory for route
  • Sex differences
  • Visuo-spatial memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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