Serious Study About Being Funny! Really!!!
We have all heard about the class clown. Most of us have sat near one in study hall, laughed with one in high school, or struggled to keep a straight face near one in statistics class in college. So why should it surprise anyone that a university study has been conducted and published about being funny? Let’s get serious . . . about being funny. Huh? Actually, this study was conducted in an attempt to determine which gender is funnier – men or women. I kid you not.
The University of California at San Diego conducted a study. The initial study included 32 students, 16 male and 16 female. They were asked to write captions for a New Yorker cartoon presented to them without any. After they completed their attempts at humor, these cartoons were presented (without identifying the genders of the humorists) to 47 female students and 34 male students, who were given the task of ranking them.
The results of the study, which was published in the Psychosomatic Bulletin & Review showed that the male student humorists were funnier than the females. Okay, it was a close call, but just the same the male cartoon captions did get higher scores than those written by females. Using a 0-5 scale, the results reflected a score for the males that was 0.11 higher than the females. To break it down further:
• Female reviewers awarded 0.6 more points to male humorists
• Male reviewers awarded 0.16 more points to male humorists
"Sad for the guys who think that by being funny they will impress the ladies, but really just impress other men who want to impress the ladies," said study co-author Nicholas Christenfeld, a professor of psychology at the university.
So, getting serious here, what message do these results reveal? Not much actually, since the numbers were incredibly close. However, more study will be conducted on this funny business. "We are conducting follow-up experiments in which we are measuring more aspects of why men do appear to have some humor advantage," she told ABC News. "For example, do they try harder, more often, in more contexts?" Keep laughing, folks!