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ERIC Number: ED523053
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 76
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 33
ISBN: ISBN-978-9-2640-6394-5
Equally Prepared for Life? How 15-Year-Old Boys and Girls Perform in School
OECD Publishing (NJ1)
In the past few decades there has been an increasing interest in the different educational experiences, success and eventual outcomes that prevail for males and females. Women often excel at school, however men often earn more and are more likely to hold positions of power in political and economic life. Looking at these inequalities, government policies cannot afford to be "gender-blind" and must aim to develop policies for parity. Gender differences point to areas where student background, attitudes and characteristics significantly affect student performance. Understanding what can influence differences in student performance can help policy makers address quality and equity concerns. Using data from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD's) Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA ), this report addresses the following questions: (1) Why do female and male students perform differently?; (2) What drives gender differences?; (3) Is there a need for gender-specific policies?; and (4) Are there specific policies that would improve male or female student performance? The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) explores the educational performance and attitudes of adolescent males and females. This report begins with a general summary of gender differences measured independently from PISA. It then considers the knowledge gained about gender-related issues through the PISA 2000, PISA 2003 and PISA 2006 assessments. Some key findings include: (1) In reading in PISA 2000, females significantly outscored males in all countries; (2) In mathematics in PISA 2003, males often outscored females; (3) In science overall in PISA 2006, there was no significant difference between males and females in the level of performance. However, when examining the different science competencies, females were better than males at "identifying scientific issues", while males were better at "explaining phenomena scientifically"; and (4) Males and females did not have significantly different attitudes to to school science, but looking at their future aspirations, there were marked differences in their expectations of having career in science at the age of 30. Appended are: (1) Background of PISA; and (2) Data Tables. (Contains 16 figures, 18 tables and 8 notes.)
OECD Publishing. 2, rue Andre Pascal, F-75775 Paris Cedex 16, France. Tel: +33-145-24-8200; Fax: +33-145-24-8500; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Program for International Student Assessment