This paper reviews gender differences in listening. The paper focuses on three main questions for reviewing related studies published previously: (1) Between boys and girls, who listen better? (2) Reasons males or females listen better? and (3) Which method(s) researchers mainly used to explore gender differences in listening? Two major fields of research in listening were investigated: cognitive and metacognitive studies. The review reveals that male and female students have used different brain hemispheres for their listening comprehension although there are still debates and discussions on this issue. The reasons males seem listen more attentively than females are due to that fact that males are likely to pay attention to facts while females on the contrary like to listen to information. Surprisingly, there is no clear indication or conclusion to the question “Between males and females, who listen better?”, but this review recognizes that metacognitive instruction helps raise learners’ metacognitive awareness and assists them in their listening comprehension improvement. Three research methods mostly used for investigating gender differences in listening are recognized which are dichotic listening, brain-dominance inventory, and Metacognitive Awareness of Listening Questionnaire (MALQ) focusing on raising listeners’ cognitive and metacognitive awareness when students perform their listening tasks.


Brain dominance Brain hemispheres Cognition and metacognition in listening Gender differences in listening, Sex differences in listening


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