Mears: Drastic gender difference at SHSU result of the times
Published: Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 4, 2012 01:10
Debates about gender and schooling have taken a surprising turn in the past decade. After years of concern that girls were being shortchanged in male-dominated schools, there has been an increased worry about whether boys are the ones in peril.
For years, educators have worked to open new doors for girls in the classroom; going from a time way back in history when girls weren’t allowed to attend school or learn certain subjects, to today where girls are out ranking the guys in school. According to the Texas Tribune, at Sam Houston State University, the female to male population is 10,167 to 7,360
We've all heard girls mature a lot more quickly than guys. That means they usually have better organizational skills and can prepare themselves for tests and college applications on their own. With the large population difference at SHSU, it seems as if this notion holds true and the male students are more likely to get in trouble, fail or drop out of school.
Many would argue that the large population difference is because people are pressing more for equal rights between the two sexes, thus pushing more girls to go to college and land better jobs than the guys; however, at SHSU, I believe that the real cause of the gender gap lies in the fact that classes and professors cater more to the female population.
Former USA Today editorial writer and author of Why Boys Fail, Richard Whitmire, expressed his ideas in his book about how schools these days “with their emphasis on order, sitting still, and passive learning - are much better suited to girls than to boys.”
It is almost as if classrooms have become a type of etiquette learning environment, from sitting up straight, waiting your turn to speak, raising your hand to ask or answer a question, classrooms have transformed from a place of only learning about the core subjects – math, science, English and history – to a place to learn not only those subjects, but respect and etiquette as well. Because of this, the male population in the classroom is slowly dwindling.
If classes were more interactive, I feel as if the male population would not only increase but more male students would get involved in the classroom. While female students are more willing to sit down with professors to discuss the required reading and ask questions on topics they don’t understand, it appears many male students sit mute through these discussions and wait on others to ask questions on something they don’t understand.
While the gender gap at SHSU is rather large, a difference of 2,807 students, each student, male or female, is offered the same curriculum and chance to succeed. Yet, to close the gender gap and to get more male students involved, classrooms need to liven up and become more interactive with the students.