There has long been a perception that girls and women have less aptitude for math and science subjects than boys and men. However, there is no factual basis to this belief. What is true is that by adolescence girls often have a lower level of confidence and, perhaps as a result, are less likely to show interest in technical subjects. Helping girls see past gendered stereotypes and existing self-perceptions can increase confidence and encourage them to follow educational and career paths in math and science fields.

To best support girls' success in math and science, teachers should help students understand that their academic ability is expandable with work and practice, provide prescriptive feedback that recognizes specific effort and offers suggestions for improvement, raise the visibility of women who excel in math and the sciences and can serve as female role models for students, offer engaging and meaningful activities that spark curiosity, and provide specific support in spatial skills instruction including visualization and manipulation.

To learn more about the research underlying these practices, view the IES Practice Guide, Encouraging Girls in Math and Science.

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3-D Spatial Skills for Secondary Students (Part 1)

3-D Spatial Skills for Secondary Students (Part 1)

Dr. Sorby defines spatial skills and describes how they are used in everyday living, K-12 education, and professional careers. Related Media and Files: 3-D Spatial Skills for Secondary...

Expert Interview
Video
07/24/2014
429 views
Teaching Spatial Skills to Girls

Teaching Spatial Skills to Girls

This overview describes some of the gender differences in test performance; ways in which spatial skills are used in school, careers, and normal life; and approaches to teaching spatial skills.

Overview
Video
07/24/2014
565 views
Instructional Methods That Spark Curiosity (Part 2)

Instructional Methods That Spark Curiosity (Part 2)

In this interview, Dr. Jon Star talks about strategies to spark students’ curiosity. What are the little and the bigger things that teachers can do in math and science lessons? Related...

Expert Interview
Video
07/23/2014
521 views
Instructional Methods That Spark Curiosity (Part 1)

Instructional Methods That Spark Curiosity (Part 1)

Dr. Jon Star discusses interest as a development process. Instructional activities that may spark children's curiosity can be the basis for a sustained individual interest later in...

Expert Interview
Video
07/23/2014
589 views
Sparking Girls' Interest in Math and Science

Sparking Girls' Interest in Math and Science

Learn what situational interest is and how it might transform into a long-term interest. View strategies designed to capture girls' interest in math and science courses.

Overview
Video
07/23/2014
376 views
Stereotype Threat (Part 2)

Stereotype Threat (Part 2)

In this interview, Dr. Joshua Aronson describes how to reduce stereotype threat by introducing students to role models and emphasizing gender similarities, rather than gender...

Expert Interview
Audio
07/23/2014
400 views
Stereotype Threat (Part 1)

Stereotype Threat (Part 1)

Listen to Dr. Joshua Aronson describe what stereotype threat is and how it can impact academic achievement. Related Files: Stereotype Threat (Part 2) (Audio)

Expert Interview
Audio
07/23/2014
362 views
Female Role Models in Math and Science

Female Role Models in Math and Science

Learn about ways to teach that gender stereotypes are not true. This overview demonstrates the different ways to expose students to role models.

Overview
Video
07/23/2014
472 views
The Nature of Prescriptive Feedback (Part 2)

The Nature of Prescriptive Feedback (Part 2)

Dr. Carol Dweck describes how prescriptive, informational feedback might be used. Related Files: The Nature of Prescriptive Feedback (Part 1) (Video)

Expert Interview
Video
07/23/2014
616 views
The Nature of Prescriptive Feedback (Part 1)

The Nature of Prescriptive Feedback (Part 1)

In this video Dr. Carol Dweck describes the research on the effects of prescriptive, informational feedback and provides some examples of such feedback. Related Files: The Nature of...

Expert Interview
Video
07/23/2014
583 views
Prescriptive Feedback

Prescriptive Feedback

This multimedia overview defines "prescriptive, informational feedback" and provides guidelines to teachers in how they can provide that type of feedback and the effect it can have on their...

Overview
Video
07/23/2014
628 views
The Growth Mindset (Part 2)

The Growth Mindset (Part 2)

Dr. Carol Dweck describes how teachers can help girls develop a “growth” mindset. Related Files: The Growth Mindset (Part 1) (Video)

Expert Interview
Video
07/23/2014
437 views
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