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New Academic Study Proves Men Bullsh*t More Than Women

New Academic Study Proves Men Bullsh*t More Than Women

Now, women everywhere are likely to have figured this out, but now it's official - men bullsh*t way more than we do.

While we are more likely to downplay our experience and opinions in the workplace, men take the opposite approach. Now, there's the research to back that up - in a paper entitled "Bullsh*tters. Who Are They and What Do We Know about Their Lives?" by John Jerrim, Phil Parker and Nikki Shure.

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"Everyone knows a bullshitter but there's been very little work done on them," said John Jerrim, who led the latest study at UCL's Institute of Education. "Who bullshits, and the psychological traits they share, are important questions to answer."

Reportedly, Scottish and Northern Irish people are the least likely to bullsh*t, with the English ranking mid-table, according to the study of 15-year-olds from regions including the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland.

Jerrim recruited his UCL colleague Shure and a psychologist at the Australian Catholic University, Parker, to analyse data gathered by the OECD to assess how well 15-year-olds have mastered key academic subjects.

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Teenagers rated how familiar they were with tricky mathematical concepts like polygons, vectors and quadratic functions - but hidden amongst the very real mathematical terms were three fakes to trick bullsh*tters.

Jerrim used their responses to draw up a bullsh*t scale, with which he found: "Boys are bigger bullshitters than girls, children from higher socioeconomic backgrounds tend to bullshit more than those from lower ones, and North Americans bullshit the most" Jerrim said.

Those who ranked highest on the scale also saw themselves as more self-confident, more persevering, and more popular at school than the non-bullsh*tting end of the scale.

It wasn't just the fact that they were boys that led to people tending to bullsh*t more - socioeconomic status played a role, with more privileged people being more likely to bullsh*t. Region, too, played a role: "You can think about the positivity of North Americans and the supposedly dour nature of the Scots", Jerrim said.

Of course, maybe we can learn a little from the men in our lives - the ability to bullsh*t isn't always a negative skill, and could come in pretty handy sometimes. Jerrim agrees, and said: "Everyone gets a question in a job interview that they cannot answer. If you're an effective bullshitter, it might help you get your foot in the door. It might also help with academic grant proposals."

You can read the full PDF of the study here. If it's all a bit too heavy, Twitter user @paulisci has summarised the findings in an easy-to-digest Twitter thread.

Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

Topics: Life, Life News, Real

Marianne Eloise

Marianne writes about TV, film and internet culture for Nylon, VICE, The Guardian, Vulture, Time Out and more. She was previously a staff writer at Dazed.

 

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