The following tests were developed by Simon Baron-Cohen, director of the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge ( from the Guardian Essential Differences page )

Take the interactive empathy quotient test

Take the interactive systemising quotient test

Baron-Cohen’s theory is that the female brain is predominantly hard-wired for empathy, and that the male brain is predominantly hard-wired for understanding and building systems. He calls it the empathising-systemising (E-S) theory.

Empathising is the drive to identify another person’s emotions and thoughts, and to respond to these with an appropriate emotion. The empathiser intuitively figures out how people are feeling, and how to treat people with care and sensitivity.

Systemising is the drive to analyse and explore a system, to extract underlying rules that govern the behaviour of a system; and the drive to construct systems.

The tests work out your empathising quotient (EQ) and systemising quotient (SQ). The interactive version, which will calculate your results for you, requires Flash (version 5). Alternatively, the plain HTML version allows you to print off the questionnaire and calculate your own scores.

In either case, do both the SQ and EQ questionnaires then click on the link at the end for “your brain type”. This will tell you whether you have a male brain, a female brain or if you’re perfectly balanced.