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Biological based categories of female and male



Culturally constructed distinctions between femininity and masculinity


Gender stereotypes

Widely held belief about the behavior of males and females. Also include supposed abilities, personality traits, and expected social behavior.



-Norms of behaviors expected of people in a particular society
-learning to behave in a manner that's appropriate
-traditionally includes effort to train children about gender roles


Gender roles

Expectations about what is appropriate behavior for each sex


Three key processes in socialization

1) operant conditioning
2) observational learning
3) self socialization


Operant conditioning person

B.F. Skinner


Operant conditioning

-Power of reward and punishment
-A form of learning in which responses come to be controlled by their conveniences (body language, facial expression, etc.)


Who uses operant conditioning?

Parents, teachers, peers, "important others"


Observational learning person

Abert bandura


Observational learning

A form of learning influenced by the observation of others behavior


Facts about observational learning

1. Children imitate both females and males
2. Most children imitate same sex models more than opposite sex models
3. Same sex peers may be even more influential than adults


Self socialization

Children are active agents in their own gender-role socialization


Three steps of S.S.

1. Children learn to classify themselves as male or female and to recognize their sex as permanent qualifies (around 5/6)
2. Self socialization motivated them to value characteristics or behave associated with their sex
3. Children strive to behave in with what is considered gender appropriate


Three conflictive abilities differences in males and females

1. On average females ten to have slightly better verbal skills than males (speak earlier, larger vocab, stronger semantically (a grammar))
2. During the high school years males show a slight advantage in math abilities
3. Starting in grade school years, males tend to score higher on tasks that require visual and working memory


3 social behavior and personality differences between genders

1. Studies show that males tend to be more physically aggressive than females
2. Females tend to be more verbally aggressive than females...a pattern that shows up early in childhood and continues into adulthood
3. There are gender differences in non-verbal communication....females are more sensitive to subtle non verbal cues (a smile or frown)


Study of gifted 7th and 8th grade students person

Benbow 1988


Benbow study 1988 study of gifted 7th and 8th graders

-top 500 math students in 7&8 grade (half male half female) took a math sub of the act
-boys out numbered girls 17:1 in froups scoring over 70"
-repeat for English (Becker, Cali, eagly, 1993)
-girls out numbered boys 15:1 in groups scoring over 700
-females tend to conform more


Girls outnumbered guys in good English tests

Becker, Cali, eagly 1993


Oliver and Hyde 1997

-females more trusting and empathetic
-males more sexually active
-makes more permissive and casual about premarital and extramarital sex


3 souces of gender role socialization

1. Families
2. Schools
3. Media


Families role in gender role socialization

(Don't treat them as differently as we think but)
-fathers engage more rough housing w boys
-encouraged to play w different types of toys
-household chores assigned by sex (girls inside boys outside)


What role to schools play in sources of gender role socialization people

Sadker-sadker 1990


Schools role in gender role socialization

-preschool and grade school teachers gotten reward good behavior
-teachers pay more attention to the behavior of males
-males tend to be scolded more for bad behavior than females


Medias role in gender role socialization

-tv shows depict males and females stereotypically
-females: submissive, passive, emotional, worried about trivial matters, sex objects
-men: interdependents, assertive, composed, work oriented, serious about matters


The shoulders theory of gender roles:

"We are born female or male... To become masculine or feminine takes years of complex development"