ERIC Number: EJ1119925
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Effects of Gender on Student Response to Course-Based Research
Henter, Heather J.; Mel, Stephanie F.
Journal of College Science Teaching, v46 n2 p17-25 Nov 2016
There is wide consensus among educators that participation in authentic research is valuable for undergraduate science students, and incorporating research into large-enrollment courses is one way to provide that opportunity to many students. There is substantial variation in the documented impacts, however, particularly between males and females. To begin to address this variation we examined attitudes about science before and after courses that included original research. Students collected novel data documenting local biodiversity and communicated those data to the scientific community through an international database. Results from surveys suggest that these courses had a gender-specific effect--the attitudes of female students changed more than those of male students, and prior research experience affected the change in attitudes of female students but not male students. In focus groups both males and females emphasized that making contributions to science was a critical aspect of this project. Although both genders were equally cognizant of their contributions, previous studies suggest that placing science in context may be more important for female students.
Descriptors: College Science, Undergraduate Students, Focus Groups, Science Education, Science Instruction, Females, Student Attitudes, Biology, Chemistry, STEM Education, Science Careers, Research Projects, Genetics, Student Surveys, Likert Scales, Comparative Analysis, Gender Differences
National Science Teachers Association. 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201-3000. Tel: 800-722-6782; Fax: 703-243-3924; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.nsta.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
Grant or Contract Numbers: TUES1140640; EAGER1446563