Talk of the Town

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Men build IKEA furniture faster (and better) than women


Many a relationship has been tested by IKEA -- the world's largest furniture retailer which sells ready-to-assemble furniture with cryptic diagrams as instructions.

As most couples tell it, women insist on following those crazy directions while men toss them aside and try to put the desk, bed, chair, etc. together without them. Horrific fights ensue.

But a recent study on gender differences in furniture construction has finally settled the matter (sort of).

Sorry ladies! It seems men can build IKEA furniture faster (and maybe better) than you can -- even without the instructions. Gasp!!

A group of psychologists in Norway published a study in the journal Applied Cognitive Psychology   which found that it took women more than a minute longer to build certain IKEA items using instructions.

Though both men and women required more time without the instructions, men were able to build certain popular pieces of furniture almost a full four minutes faster than women.

Women also tended to have more issues with their final product when they put it together without using the instructions.

The researchers acknowledge that the time differences are pretty small and could likely be attributed to individual spatial abilities.

But this could all be a good excuse for ladies to bow out and add "put together IKEA furniture" to the Honey Do list.


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About the Author

Nedra Rhone has been a features reporter with the AJC for 10 years. She’s written about everything from fashion to food to news.