The differences in the anatomies and personalities of males and females are well-known to everyone, but only relatively recently have there been studies which show that there are substantial differences between the male and female brain, as well. These differences can be quite pronounced, and in many cases account for traits that generally apply more to women than men, and vice versa. The structures and systems of the male and female brain are basically similar, but the ways in which they work and integrate can be very interesting and even surprising.
It should be noted first that no scientific study has found a difference in general intelligence levels between the sexes. This is, of course, no small point, but the male and female brain do differ in character and comparative advantage. One difference that has been known for quite a while is that, on average, the male brain contains a higher number of cells than the average female brain, by about four percent, causing it to weigh about 3.5 ounces (100 g) more. The female brain, while containing slightly fewer brain cells, also contains a higher number of connections between the cells. These general differences may account for the different ways in which men and women process language, judge the speed of an object, and estimate the passage of time, among other things.
This suggests something that most of us know from experience, namely that men often excel in tasks that require concentration in local areas of the brain, such as mathematics. Women, on the other hand, are generally better at assimilating and integrating information for uses such as verbal expression. This is not just a common cultural observation, as it was found to be a scientifically valid conclusion in a study conducted by the University of California at Irvine in 2004.
Another difference between the male and female brain is the size of a structure called the corpus collosum. This is, in effect, the highway that connects the two hemispheres of the brain. The corpus collosum in women tends to be larger than that of men. This equates to faster data transfer rates between the hemispheres, giving women greater access to both sides, especially for language. Men, in contrast, tend to be more "left-brained," or logical and analytical, than women. It has also been suggested that the larger size of the corpus collosum in women could be responsible for the phenomenon we call "women's intuition."
The deep limbic system of the brain is another place in which significant differences exist between the male and female brain. This system is larger in a woman's brain than in that of a man, often allowing women to be more in touch with their feelings and those of others. This also results in a woman's increased ability to bond and take care of other people, as compared to men. Limbic system differences are probably responsible for the fact that women are seen as the primary caretakers of young children in every known culture.