In a newly released study from the American Psychological Association, research reveals that girls make higher grades than boys in all subject areas.
“Although gender differences follow essentially stereotypical patterns on achievement tests in which boys typically score higher on math and science, females have the advantage on school grades regardless of the material,” said lead study author Daniel Voyer, PhD, of the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, Canada. “School marks reflect learning in the larger social context of the classroom and require effort and persistence over long periods of time, whereas standardized tests assess basic or specialized academic abilities and aptitudes at one point in time without social influences.”
Research was compliled from 1914 to 2011 and included 30 different countries so some say this puts to rest the claims that we are in the midst of a "boy crisis." Seventy percent of the sampled data was from students in the United States with the other 30% coming from around the world.
The reasons behind girls' success is attributed to parental assumptions and social and cultural factors. Previous research has shown that girls tend to study to understand and boys emphasize performance.
The way most classrooms and learning environments are set up mean that students typically spend a majority of their day sitting and listening, something gender studies have shown girls are typically better at than boys. Could this also attribute to the reason boys aren't doing as well?
As a mom to an 8 year old boy with a whole lot of school ahead of him and a stepmom to a 15 year old boy with a whole lot of school behind him, this study intrigues me. How do we ensure our boys are doing their best, regardless if that's above or below the girls, with what they've got?
What do you think? Do you find any of this research surprising? And now that we know that boys are lagging behind girls, what do we do as parents, educators and community members to change that?