Researchers at Macquarie University have found that teachers may treat girls differently in science classes because they subconsciously assume girls are less capable than boys.
The study, conducted by Dr Carol Newall, asked 80 trainee teachers to produce a lesson for a fictional eight-year-old child. Changing the child’s gender in the profile presented to the teachers changed the way they taught the lesson. Typically, they used less scientific language when presented with a girl.
These associations are deeply ingrained in our culture, and are difficult to break.