Magazine article Technology & Learning

Gender Stats Making News

Magazine article Technology & Learning

Gender Stats Making News

Article excerpt

The cover article of the October issue of T&L addressed the fact that, in spite of a growing emphasis on gender and technology issues, there is still a long way to go before the majority of female students enthusiastically embrace computer technology. Two recent studies reinforce this point.

Computers and Classrooms: The Status of Technology in U.S. Schools (www. ets.org/research/plc/comp class.html), a survey conducted in 1997 by the Educational Testing Service Policy Information Center, found several gender-related differences among college-bound seniors from the class of 1996. For example:

* Females were less likely than males to have coursework or experience in computer literacy and computer programming.

* They were also less likely to use computers to solve math and natural science problems.

* At the same time, females were more likely than males to have word processing experience.

In October 1998, the American Association of University Women (www.aauw. org), a national organization that promotes education and equity for all women and girls, issued its own report, based on research conducted by the American Institutes of Research. Titled Gender Gaps: Where Schools Still Fail Our Children, the report was commissioned as a follow-up to AAUW's 1992 publication, How Schools Shortchange Girls, which offered evidence that girls in this country receive an inferior education to boys. In summarizing their current findings, the authors write, "Gender Gaps confirms that public schools are making progress toward equitable treatment of boys and girls, although concerns remain. …

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