37% percent of online adults say that health and medicine is among the topics they find most interesting, while 32% identify science and technology in their top three, according to a new analysis by Pew Research Center.
But not all things appeal to all people; only 11% of online adults say ‘science and technology’ and ‘health and medicine’ are of particular interest. The key data:
· 52% of online women say health and medicine is among the top three topics of interest to them, compared with 22% among men. Men are about twice as likely as women to say science and technology is among the top three topics of interest to them (43% of men compared with 22% of women).
· Younger adults (ages 18 to 29) are more inclined than older adults (ages 50 to 64) to cite science and technology as a topic of particular interest. The reverse pattern occurs when it comes to interest in health and medicine.
This analysis also examined interests using the “Big Five” personality dimensions that are commonly studied in psychology—openness to experience; conscientiousness; agreeableness; emotional stability and extroversion. The findings:
· 66% of online adults who score higher on “openness to experience” say they are interested in science and technology topics, including 39% who rank science and technology among the topics of most interest to them.
· By contrast, 23% of those lower on openness to experience identify science and technology topics as being of particular interest while 52% say these topics are not of interest.
· Introverts express more interest in science and technology topics than do extroverts. For example, 61% of those lower on a two-item extroversion index say they are interested in science and technology topics, compared with 52% among those higher on the extroversion scale.
· Those lower on a three-item index of conscientiousness tend to express more interest in science and technology topics (with 34% saying these topics are of most interest, compared with 26% among those higher in conscientiousness).