So, this sounds pretty convincing, right? Well, not to everyone. There are researchers who argue the other side — even if the adult male and female brains are wired differently, it’s a huge leap to say that these differences are programmed in at birth. There are socio-cultural factors at work.
Brain connections change as a result of experience and learning. When the same signals are processed over and over, those neural networks get stronger, just as muscles or skills develop with usage. Male and female brains may start out similar but become different over time as boys and girls are treated differently with different expectations. How we’re brought up plays a major role in how we act, think, and believe and our brains may adapt accordingly.
A reasonable conclusion is that it’s both — there may be brain differences but there are also cultural influences. What percent of differences are neurological vs. societal is anybody’s guess at this point. And so the debate will continue for quite some time.
At least that gives researchers something to do.