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Gender Roles in Education

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Presentation on theme: "Gender Roles in Education"— Presentation transcript:

1 Gender Roles in Education
Presented by: Nazifa, Sydney & Robin

2 1900 1905 1909 1914 1915 1916 1920 1945 1910- 1930 Half of the enrolled students in high school business and commercial courses were women The first women to graduate from engineering in the USA First superintendent to be a woman in a large city school system Many successful woman teachers Schools addressed the boy drop-out rate by encouraging sports in schools More sex-typed electives were introduced, they became less controversial 11 spate sex public vocational schools remained Said that coeducation encouraged boy’s rebellious nature and made them hate school First woman admitted into the Harvard Medical School 1972 1974 1996 2008- 2009 2011 Title IX was passed Woman’s Educational Equality Act was passed First time women passed men in bachelor degrees earned Women earn more doctorate degrees than men for the first time 10.2% of the women gain advanced degrees and 10.9% of men 1950s 1905: The degree was earned at Cornell University in Civil Engineering : The pay and pension was close to that of men 1972: Title IX was passed to avoid making discriminatory acts or decisions based on sex bias 2011: The gap between the genders is closing Boys are forced into vocational programs, girls forced into home programs

3 Theories & Schools of Thought
Functionalism: studies problems within society & how institutions meet those needs Gender Theory: studying gender inequality to understand society Learning Theory: most human behaviour is learned Functionalism: The problem of lack of gender equality is recognized in society while the institution of education does and does not meet the need to implement measures to ensure that gender equality is achieved. Examples of this include the source material that excludes female contributions, and encourages stereotypical gender roles. However, educational personnel try to balance between the needs of girls and boys in an attempt to form gender equality. Gender theory: In this sexist society, it can be seen that males are given more opportunities and encouragement to perform well and enter 'masculine' subjects that they will excel in and obtain high-paying and valuable jobs. Examples of this are how boys are encouraged to strive for ‘masculine’ subjects (sciences & maths) while women take whatever job is left, usually in the arts and linguistics departments. Learning theory: Such as demonstrated by Bandura's Bobo dolls, behaviour is easily modelled and implemented, especially by the young and impressionable. For example, by having a female teacher who embodies the feminine qualities of a caring and sensitive mother, girls are encouraged to strive to imitate such an ideal. According to Skinner's operant conditioning, rewards and punishments are given to encourage or discourage certain behaviours meeting an ideal. For example, girls are praised for their neat and quiet personalities but punished for being assertive while boys are encouraged to speak up and discouraged from ‘being quiet like a girl’.

4 “Real Life” Context Effects on schools and other educational institutions: Gender roles in education are established in kindergarten classrooms Schools have tried to create gender-neutral classroom/school environments –to be more inclusive, learning- friendly and gender-sensitive In kindergarten, a child for the first time meets and recognizes his/her peers and while playing and relating to them uses the classroom as a “laboratory” for learning the gender roles, of masculinity and femininity. In this new atmosphere they are predisposed to establish relations with only the children of the same gender. Biased interactions between teachers and pupils still exist, which plays a significant role in the formation process of gendered relations. Some schools focus on promoting gender neutrality within the classroom. Teachers may be asked to refer to students without the use of gender pronouns, referring to them by their first names only or using gender-neutral pronouns. Other attempts to encourage gender neutrality in schools have involved: not separating toys in gender-specific areas; not having gender-specific sports in physical education lessons; designating gender-neutral bathrooms and on-campus housing. The use of gender neutrality is to try and eliminate the use of gender roles in the classroom.

5 “Real Life” Context Major Acts/Policies in Society
Title IX - a portion of the Education Amendments of 1972 Women’s Educational Equality Act Title IX states (in part) that: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance...” Title IX applies to all educational programs and all aspects of a school's educational system. Civil rights activists and organizations maintain that "when students suffer sexual assault and harassment, they are deprived of equal and free access to an education. Title IX has been a source of controversy in part due to claims that the current interpretation is no longer faithful to the anti-discrimination language in Title IX's text, and instead discriminates against men and has contributed to the reduction of programs for male athletes Woman’s Educational Equality Act outlines federal protections against the gender discrimination of women in education. WEAA was enacted as part of P.L and was intended to combat sex-role stereotyping in elementary and secondary schools primarily. There is also a program associated with this act that promotes education equity for women and girls through competitive grants.

6 Gender Stereotypes Boys are smarter at math and sciences than girls
Girls are smarter at linguistics and humanities than boys Based upon history where men were the hunters and women were the caring mothers, it can be seen that girls excel in the arts and linguistics while boys excel in maths and sciences. Thus math and science courses are stereotypically seen as masculine courses. Therefore, the sciences and maths are usually dominated by the male population in a typical school. Whereas linguistics and the humanities are seen as feminine courses due to the less thought and less hands-on work involved, causing these courses to be more female dominated in a typical school. Expanding from this point, boys are encouraged to pursue post-secondary programs in the maths and sciences, thus obtaining high-paying and high status jobs while girls only occupy the low income and non prestigious vacancies existing in the categories of services and education. Furthermore, when a girl scores high in a masculine subject, her success is not because of talent but merely her hard work and diligence, concluding that girls do not have talent in that specific field of study while the failure of a boy in the same subject is perceived as the boy being talented but lazy.

7 Gender Stereotypes Only Girls can do home-economic type classes
Only Boys answer teacher’s questions Stereotypically, it is seen as weak if a man takes home-economics in school and shows their femininity (which stereotypically is a bad thing). Stereotypically, boys are more likely to answer teacher’s questions and teachers are more likely to ask boys to answer questions. This is due to the seemingly risk-taking nature in boys. However, this is a stereotype that diminishes girls’ opportunities in the classroom.

8 Gender Bias Teacher attention is unequal between genders
Curriculum favours the male experience Gender socialization assures that the girls’ inequality to boys is evident and recognized Teachers socialize girls towards the feminine ideal Use of ‘masculine’ & ‘feminine’ subjects Boys are referred for testing for gifted programs twice as much as girls Differentiated attitudes & expectations of teachers towards girls & boys Research found that females received less attention from teachers than boys, while the attention that they did receive was largely negative. Furthermore, teacher’s attention is spread disproportionally among the male and female students, while boys get more attention because they are slacking off and wasting their potential while girls sit quietly and do their work. Upon examining the gender within schools, evidence has risen that indicates that the curriculum being taught is secretly gender-biased, thus concluding that girls are short-changed in the classroom. Gender socialization within schools assures that girls are made conscious of their inequality compared to boys. Examples of this include seating or lining arrangement by gender, an administrator ignoring any acts of sexual harassment and thus permitting the degradation of girls in the education institution, and behaviour tolerance. The latter describes the behaviours tolerated for boys but not for girls under the unreasonable excuse that “boys will be boys”. It has been brought to attention that in the classroom, teachers unconsciously socialize girls towards a certain feminine ideal: neat, quit and calm. In accordance to teaching, teachers encourage boys to think independently, be active and to speak up while girls are praised for imitating this feminine ideal. Thus indicating that any behaviour diverging from this ideal is unacceptable. Branching from this ideal, boys are more likely to receive praise or remediation (calling for expansion of an answer) while girls are likely to receive a simple acknowledgement, thus concluding that boys are encouraged to think and express more while girls are encouraged to only respond. Current day, both genders have equal opportunities for education.

9 Gender Bias

10 Gender Discrimination
Girls are generally seen as better at ‘soft’ subjects such as languages, history, art and music, and boys better at sports, mathematics and computing Pupils felt that male teachers are ‘more intelligent’ than female teachers, but female teachers were ‘more caring’ than male teachers. A gender gap in education is actually a function of a teacher's perception of a child's attitude toward school based on the child's attentiveness, task persistence, eagerness to learn, learning independence, flexibility and organization. Hard wiring of gender – girls and boys are different There is another critically important aspect of classroom instruction that impacts engagement. It involves understanding the hard wiring of gender. Girls and boys are different. They learn differently, they play differently, they fight differently, they see the world differently, they hear differently, and they express their emotions differently. This information is vital as schools see more and more boys becoming disengaged from the classroom/school. In Dr. Leonard Sax’s book, Boys Adrift: The Five Factors Driving the Growing Epidemic of Unmotivated Boys and Underachieving Young Men, he contends that a combination of social and biological factors is creating an environment that is literally toxic to boys. Information on gender differences is not new. Over the years educators have heard about it but rarely have they applied it with intention in classrooms. Actually what schools have done over the past 20 years is tried to create gender-neutral classroom/school environments, which in many cases have been a detriment of boys. In his practice as a family physician and psychologist, Dr. Sax has seen a growing epidemic of underachieving boys. Starting in kindergarten, they are often labeled as inattentive, distracted, and having limited focus and put on medication to control their behavior. Dr. Sax’s dedication to uncovering what is behind this trend taps into the question of student disengagement and uncovering the factors that are influencing this trend.

11 Gender Discrimination
"Sitting in the same classroom, reading the same textbook, listening to the same teacher, boys and girls receive very different educations." (Sadker, 1994) Not only must there be no gender discrimination in education but we must pressurise for education systems that foster overall gender equity in broader society. - Camilla Croso, GCE President Quotes relating to gender discrimination

12 Other Things of Note Gender Equality Gender Roles-Interviews with Kids
Statistics Gender Roles-Interviews with Kids Gender role perceptions Girls Education Gender discrimination

13 Did you know? Some teachers are unaware of the bias present in their teaching and how they subconsciously favour boys over girls Discrepancies between elementary school performances of boys & girls lead critics to argue that boys are being neglected in the educational system An average grade 11 boy writes at the level of a grade 8 girl Girls usually develop oral, writing and reading abilities quicker than boys Girls have a tendency to sit more in the front or centre of the classroom, closer to the teacher, while boys are mostly occupying margins and periphery of the room

14 References Changing the Face of Medicine | Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell. (n.d.). National Library of Medicine - National Institutes of Health. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Chapman, A. (n.d.). Gender Bias in Education. EdChange - Diversity, Multicultural, Cultural Competence, & Inclusion Education Training. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from EHRC - Sex discrimination in education . (n.d.). EHRC - Home. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Eisenmann, L. (n.d.). Historical Dictionary of Women's Education in the United States - Google Books. Google Books. Retrieved October 20, 2013, from Equity In Elementary and Secondary Education: Race, Gender, and National Origin Issues. (n.d.). University of Michigan. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Gender Discrimination. (n.d.). Home. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Gender discrimination begins in elementary school - Birmingham Top News | (n.d.).Welcome to | Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Gender Role Stereotyping | (n.d.). | An Education & Child Development Site for Parents | Parenting & Educational Resource. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Gender Roles in Education. (n.d.). The Republic of Rumi. Retrieved October 18, 2013, from Kovalik, S. (n.d.). Gender Differences and Student Engagement. The Center for Effective Learning. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Guledani, K. (n.d.). Gender Influence on Educational Process - Democracy - Gunda Werner Institute. Gunda-Werner-Institut. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Numbers, t. (n.d.). Knowledge Center | Catalyst | Retrieved October 20, 2013, from PBS Online: Only A Teacher: Teaching Timeline. (n.d.). PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from Sax, L. (2005). Why gender matters: what parents and teachers need to know about the emerging science of sex differences. New York: Doubleday. Sax, L. (2007). Boys adrift: the five factors driving the growing epidemic of unmotivated boys and underachieving young men. New York: Basic Books. Timeline - Psychology's Feminist Voices. (n.d.). Home - Psychology's Feminist Voices. Retrieved October 16, 2013, from WIC - Women's History in America. (n.d.). Women’s International Center - Honoring, Encouraging, and Educating Women Around the World at Retrieved October 16, 2013, from Women in Engineering | Engineering Degree. (n.d.). Online Engineering Degree Resource. Retrieved October 16, 2013, from Worldwide. (n.d.). 25 GENDER FACTS AFFECTING EDUCATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT. HAVAS Worldwide. Retrieved October 20, 2013, from

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