Gender Equity and Mathematics Education

The possibility that mathematics achievement is influenced by a student's gender (as male or female) has been examined for more than half a century in many countries around the world. The evidence collected from different countries makes it clear that differences in mathematics performance between females and males reflect social, economic, and educational disparities rather than any innate gender-based aptitude for mathematics. Some of the different causes of underachievement and nonparticipation for girls and women are reviewed in this entry.


Four facts are important and enduring in understanding the relationship between gender and mathematics. First, gender differences in mathematics achievement are generally small and insignificant when considered alongside the overlap in male and female achievement. Janet Hyde and colleagues have produced a number of meta-analyses of ...

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