In the earlier part of the 20th century, it was common that boys significantly outperformed girls in schools. Be it in Brunei or in other countries, the number of male students as compared to female students was astronomical. However, it was only after the realisation of the importance of education and academic qualification apart from arising civilisation that the number of the latter students appeared to substantially rise. During the progression, fine academic results still seemed to be in the favour of boys whilst girls gave the impression that they were not able to catch up to their opposite gender’s accomplishment. However, at the end of that century, female students displayed a considerable improvement. They even surpassed the other sex in the academic world. This is evident by the sudden hike of good academic results of female students as the results of male students plunge. There are four potential reasons that contribute to this occurrence; (1) the difference in maturity pace between girls and boys, (2) the difference in behaviour between the two genders and the lessening use of typical punishment used to discipline students in the old days, (3) the emphasis on equal opportunities and (4) the difference between males’ and females’ brain performance.
The pace of physical and mental maturity of female students differs from that of males. In other words, girls mature much faster than boys and the former are not burdened with the boys’ testicular hormones (Goodhart, 1996). Goodhart (1996) then argues that “these are of less than no help to school work, but they are important for success, especially later on in life, when it is not brains the ladies lack, but balls.” Grant (1992) suggests that some boys who are considered average performers were bright, but they are immature students whose performance could develop and improve with maturity. Moreover, teachers expected cognitive maturity and ‘readiness for school’ from female students and this notion is...
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