Stem Gender Gap and Intra-Individual Strengths in Maths and Russian Language

Borodaeva, Zh.; Chipeeva, Nadezhda A.; Maslennikova, Ekaterina P.; Feklicheva, Inna V.; Soldatova, Elena; Sharafieva, K.R.; Ismatullina, V.; Malykh, S. and Kovas, Yulia. 2018. Stem Gender Gap and Intra-Individual Strengths in Maths and Russian Language. The European Proceedings of Social & Behavioural Sciences EpSBS, 49(15), pp. 132-144. [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The study investigates STEM gender gap by means of intra-individual strengths (IIS) analysis,defined as the difference between Maths and Russian exam grades. The sample of Russian students (n =788) was split into 3 groups, according to their degrees: Technical (n=282); Natural Sciences (n=128); and Humanities (n=378). Students completed an online battery of cognitive tests and a demographic
questionnaire. Their grades for the Unified State Exam (USE) in Maths and Russian Language, taken at the end of compulsory school education, were also collected. IIS were negative for all degrees, indicating that individuals’ maths exam grades were on average lower than Russian exam grades. The size of IIS differed across the three groups (d=.42-.93). Absolute mean values of IIS were smallest for Technical degrees (-9.52±12.88); largest for Humanities (-25.09±21.6); with Natural sciences in between the two (-16.71±21.61). Technical and Natural Sciences groups showed on average significantly higher Maths USE grades than Humanities group (d=.78 and .52, respectively). Technical group showed lower Russian Language USE grade than Humanities group (d=.2); whereas, Natural Sciences and Humanities groups
did not differ. Females on average outperformed males in the Russian language exam, with small effect sizes (η2=.01-.05, estimated for the three groups separately). No sex differences were observed for maths exam performance. For intra-individual strengths, negligible sex differences were found for all groups
(η2=0.006-0.009). The results suggest that IIS may play a role in the choice of area of study, but is unlikely to explain the STEM Gender Gap in the Russian sample.

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Intra-individual strengths, sex differences, Unified State Exam, STEM gender gap

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17 September 2018Accepted
30 November 2018Published Online

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Date Deposited:

21 Feb 2019 11:25

Last Modified:

12 Jun 2021 01:12

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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