Gender Differences in Semantic Fluency Patterns in Children


  • Federico Soriano Institute of Translational and Cognitive Neuroscience (ITCN), Argentina
  • Julieta Fumagalli
  • Diego Shalom
  • Juan Pablo Barreyro
  • Macarena Martínez-Cuitiño National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), Argentina



school-age children, gender differences, semantic processing, living things, inanimate objects.


Previous literature in cognitive psychology has provided data involving differences in language processing between men and women. It has been found that women are usually more proficient with certain semantic categories such as fruitvegetables and furniture.  Men are reported to be better at other categories semantic, e.g.  tools and transport. The aim of this article is to provide an inquiry about possible differences in semantic category processing of living things (LT) and inanimate objects (IO) by Argentinian Spanish-speakers school-aged children. The group of 86 children between 8 and 12 years old (51.16% boys) has been assessed on a semantic fluency task. Six semantic categories have been tested, three of them from the LT domain (animalsfruit/vegetables, and body parts) and three from the IO domain (transportclothes and musical instruments). Results showed differences in semantic processing between boys and girls. Girls retrieved more items from the LT domain and activated more animals and fruit/vegetables.  These findings appear to support an innate conceptual organization of the mind, which is presumably influenced by cultural factors and/or schooling.


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Author Biographies






Vol 3, No 2 (2016)

How to Cite

Soriano, F. ., Fumagalli, J., Shalom, D. ., Juan Pablo Barreyro, & Macarena Martínez-Cuitiño. (2016). Gender Differences in Semantic Fluency Patterns in Children. East European Journal of Psycholinguistics , 3(2), 92-102.

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