PISA: No U.S. gender gap in math, science

U.S. girls do as well as boys in math and science on the PISA exam, notes Liana Heitin on Ed Week‘s Curriculum Matters.

 In many other countries, the 2012 OECD report notes, “marked gender differences in mathematics performance—in favour of boys—are observed.”

Three years ago, American boys outperformed girls in math on PISA; their science scores were similar.

However, the STEM gender gap hasn’t vanished, reports Erik Robelen.

Take the AP program. In all 10 STEM subjects currently taught and tested, including chemistry, physics, calculus, and computer science, the average scores of females lagged behind males, according to data for the class of 2011.

U.S. girls aren’t as confident as their male classmates, the 2012 PISA report found.

[E]ven when girls perform as well as boys in mathematics, they tend to report less perseverance, less openness to problem-solving, less intrinsic and instrumental motivation to learn mathematics, less self-belief in their ability to learn mathematics and more anxiety about mathematics than boys, on average; they are also more likely than boys to attribute failure in mathematics to themselves rather than to external factors.

Young women are losing ground in computer science, according to Change the Equation: Women earned 18 percent of bachelor’s degrees in computing in 2012, down from 27 percent about a decade earlier. Of those earning a master’s degree in computer science, only 28 percent were female in 2012, compared with 33 percent in 2001.

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Comments

  1. “Women earned 18 percent of bachelor’s degrees in computing in 2012, down from 27 percent about a decade earlier.”
    A decade earlier would have been the end of the dot-com bubble, so there’s a good chance those numbers were abnormal.

  2. Women that I’ve trained or taught in STEM fields (i’m in I.T.) are just as good as the guys, and usually better, since they don’t have egos the size of mack trucks.

    That being said, they tend to lean towards management since usually the lowest manager tends to make more than the average propeller head in the department.

    🙂

  3. Mark Roulo says:

    “U.S. girls do as well as boys in math and science on the PISA exam … Three years ago, American boys outperformed girls in math on PISA…”

     

    And the US math score dropped by 6 points (487 to 481) between 2009 and 2012. I can’t find the male/female breakdown … did the girls get better or did the boys get worse or some mix?