ERIC Number: ED402202
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
"And They Is Us": Gender Issues in the Instruction of Science.
Jewett, Thomas O.
This paper reviews research concerning women's negative or ambivalent attitude toward science and how that attitude is often reinforced by teachers. It explores prescriptions for teachers, students, and parents in an attempt to remedy this classroom dilemma. Research concerning the reason why many women have negative or ambivalent attitudes toward science points to two main factors: parental and societal perceptions and teacher behavior and expectations. The way girls and boys are treated appears to be the primary cause for the existing gender gap in science and math. A variety of factors such as parental and teacher expectations, lack of experience with scientific observations and instruments, peer pressure to conform to traditional sex-role expectations in career choice, little or no contact with female role models, and unconscious teacher bias contributes to the failure of girls to excel in mathematics and science. Confidence was also found to be strongly related with continuation in math and science. Technology, mathematics, and science are still viewed as nontraditional arenas for girls and these perceptions are often reinforced by instructional techniques that put females at a disadvantage. On the basis of these findings, prescriptions are presented, with a view to ending gender differences in the perception of and ability to do science by women. Contains 27 references. (JRH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A