ERIC Number: ED214602
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Oct-17
Gender Differences in Solving Mathematics Problems among Two-Year College Students in a Developmental Algebra Class and Related Factors.
Schonberger, Ann K.
A study was conducted at the University of Maine at Orono (UMO) to examine gender differences with respect to mathematical problem-solving ability, visual spatial ability, abstract reasoning ability, field independence/dependence, independent learning style, and developmental problem-solving ability (i.e., formal reasoning ability). Subjects included 27 females and 48 males from two-year programs at UMO who had finished or tested out of a developmental algebra course in 1980-81. Subjects received a multiple-choice test of algebraic concepts and paper and pencil tests assessing various abilities and characteristics. A three-stage analysis of the scores revealed the following: (1) males did better than females in the algebraic concepts test; (2) females had more independent learning styles; (3) although the three tests with a spatial or figural component were significantly correlated with problem solving, one of the tests showed no gender differences at all and the other revealed differences less than the differences on the problem-solving tests; and (4) tests of the level of formal reasoning ability tended to produce higher results among males. The study report details methodology, limitations, and findings; provides suggestions for further research; and considers implications for instruction. Data tables and sample test items are appended. (KL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Midyear Meeting of the American Education Research Association Special Interest Group on Women in Education (Washington, DC, October 17, 1981).