Thesis Title

Differences in Science Achievements and Attitudes Between Male and Female Students From a Rural Missouri School District

Date of Graduation

Spring 2000

Degree

Master of Natural and Applied Science in Biology

Department

Biology

Committee Chair

Janice Greene

Subject Categories

Biology

Abstract

The tendency of female students to avoid math and science courses has become a concern for educators. The avoidance of these areas could result from their personal preferences or from outside influencing sources that could be gender-based. This situation could place young women in a position of reduced choices with respect to careers. This study examined gender differences in education, attitudes of students, influences that friends and families have on individuals, and jobs. The top ten graduates from 1992 to 1999 of Logan Rogersville High School, in Rogersville, Missouri, were surveyed. Thirty seven females and twelve males responded. Students' ACT scores and grade point averages were compared between genders. Questions concerned their preference for math and science from elementary to high school, if they experienced any gender bias in the classroom, encouragement from faculty or family to continue science and math, and why they did or did not pursue a career in science or math. In this study, grade point averages were slightly higher for females than for males, but the ACT scores of males were slightly higher than females which agreed with previous studies. However, there were no significant differences between females and males for ACT and GPA scores. Few of the study females pursued a career in science. Also, most of the females stated that they did not like math and science, and that they had never felt any gender differences in their classes. Whereas, more males in this study pursued a math and science-related career and took science and math in high school because they liked the subjects.

Copyright

© Charlotte K Mistler

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Dissertation/Thesis

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