Asses the view that gender differences in achievement are largely the result of changes in the education system
There are both Internal and External factors which help influence gender differences in achievement through the changes in the education system. There are a number of internal factors within the education system which contribute towards the different gender achievement. It is shown that Girls always achieve better results than boys, however both sexes results have improved over the years. One of the main factors is Equal opportunities policies, as it allows pupils to have a better insight on school life. It allows people to be aware of gender issues and teachers are more sensitive to the need to avoid gender stereotyping. The belief that boys and girls are equally capable and entitled to the same opportunities is now part of a mainstream thinking in education and it influences educational policies. For example Girls are encouraged to take up more “laddish” subjects such as Science, Technology and Engineering. With the introduction of the National Curriculum in 1988 helped remove one of the main inequalities throughout the education system as it made most subjects compulsory for both boys and girls. Alison Kelly (1987) argues that by making Science compulsory for both sexes it has helped equalise opportunities. Another factor is the change is GCSE's and coursework, some sociologists argue that the changes in which pupils are assessed have favoured girls abilities more than boys. For example, Stephen Gorard (2005) found that the gender gap in achievement was fairly constant for 1975 until 1988-9 , being the year that GCSE's and coursework were brought in. Also Mitsos and Browne(1998) supported this view as they concluded that girls were more successful in coursework as they spent more time on their work, take care with presentation, are better at meeting deadlines and bring the right equipment and materials to lessons. They argue that these...
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