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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.468 SNIP: 0.905 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Print: 1072-8325
ISSN Online: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v8.i1.10
24 pages

GOOD INTENTIONS: AN EXPERIMENT IN MIDDLE SCHOOL SINGLE-SEX SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS CLASSROOMS WITH HIGH MINORITY ENROLLMENT

Dale R. Baker
College of Education, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-1911

ABSTRACT

This study examined the effects of single-sex middle school science and mathematics classrooms with high minority enrollment on achievement, affect, peer, and teacher-student interactions. All students earned higher grades in mathematics than in science. Girls earned higher grades than boys. The higher grades of girls were not clearly attributable to the singlesex environment, and aspects of the single-sex environment interfered with boys’ achievement. The single-sex environment contributed to girls’, but not boys’, feelings of empowerment, peer support, and positive self-concept. The curriculum and pedagogy were better suited to girls than to boys, leading to discipline problems and hostile interactions. However, boys were more engaged in technology-based activities than girls. Overall, all-boy classes were less supportive learning environments than all-girl classes. Although the results replicate findings elsewhere, this is the only study to look at minority students in middle school.


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