ERIC Number: ED251309
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr-28
Reference Count: 0
Science Career Interests, Attitudes, Abilities, and Anxiety Among Secondary School Students; The Effects of Gender, Race/Ethnicity, and School Type/Location.
Matyas, Marsha Lakes
A study of exceptional secondary school biology teachers was conducted to determine what factors might be important in encouraging young women to remain on the "science track" during high school. Each teacher had a record of encouraging his/her female students to enroll in further science and mathematics courses. Three questions were examined: (1) Males often score more positively on measures of science attitudes, interests, and past experiences. Would students of these teachers demonstrate similar sex-based biases?; (2) Would the student's race/ethnic group and school type/location have significant effects on these variables?; (3) How are these variables related to science and engineering career interest among male and female students? Measures were taken of students' science anxiety, attitudes toward science and scientists, cognitive style, locus of control, spatial visualization ability, participation in science activities, self-estimate of grade and ability, and attitudes toward women in science. Results indicate that the best predictor of science career interest for females was positive feelings about their science classes and that, compared to males, females expressed less confidence in their scientific and problem-solving abilities and reported less frequent participation in curricular and extracurricular science activities. Other findings (with implications for incresing females' science career interests) are reported and discussed. (JN)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Science Education Research
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (New Orleans, LA, April 28, 1984).