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Gender difference

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Introduction

Exploring the reasons for gender differences in GCSE exam results Aims: * To investigate the gender differences in GCSE results * To investigate possible reasons for the differences between gender and success at GCSE I have chosen to study this particular topic because I would personally like to know why there is a discrepancy in GCSE results, depending on gender. Throughout history there have been debates on the equality of the two sexes and this is an aspect that defies all policies. I would like to know why there is inequality on this facet of society. On a more personal level I would like to know of any possibility of my educational attainment being affected by gender. In regards to Sociology, I am studying this area because I want to find out the sociological explanations for the discrepancy in exam results. There are various sociological concepts that relate to this issue, and they could provide possible reasons for these differences. This investigation evidently requires research, so I will be submitting a questionnaire to teachers in order to find out their opinions regarding this issue. It will also provide me the grounds to explore possible links between gender and educational success in their experience. ...read more.

Middle

From the 40 in total, 20 shall be for females and 20 for males to keep the gender representation equal. This means 10 from each group, GCSE and A-level. This will ensure that the results are unbiased. I have chosen not to include any student in Year 10 within the sample frame because I personally believe that students studying in Year 10 are too early in the course and may not realise the implications their gender may have, or even fully comprehend the issue. Therefore I have closed the sample frame to Year 11, 12, and 13. During the course of this, I may encounter some ethical issues. For example, it is unlikely that a member of the male gender will discredit his own gender, and may lie effectively in order to justify himself. He may not want to admit the reasons behind failure and back up unjustified excuses. This could also happen vice versa. This indicates the sensitivity of the issue and implies that it should be approached with caution. I should also avoid being too overt or stereotypical as this may create a biased result or sexual prejudice. I should word my questions carefully, not to offend anyone. I will design and submit a pilot study, as a prototype of my data collection tool based on the information I require, hence creating a question for each aspect. ...read more.

Conclusion

Another study that I researched was conducted by Linda Croxford and Teresa Tinklin who found peer pressure to be the cause. This theory corresponds well with my research; I found that 77.5% of students agreed that peer pressure is a contributing factor to the difference in achievement. And finally, the last theory I discovered was carried out by Patrick McDaid. Based on his research he concluded that the difference in achievement was caused by the method in which the students are taught. He discovered that girls are auditory learners whereas boys are visual-kinesthetic learners. This causes problems during lessons when boys are being taught by the teacher in auditory form and also at examinations. Basically this is a biological cause. During my research I found that some students and teachers believed that differences were caused by biological causes. Evaluation Findings The secondary data helped me to accomplish my first aim. The data from the questionnaire provided me with the ground to make judgements on the issue of gender related attainment at GCSE. It helped me to fulfil my second aim, I now realise that there are various reasons behind the gender difference in educational attainment, the most common being: influence of role models, peer pressure, different attitudes, and upbringing. ...read more.

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