gendered education in the united states


Write a 3–4-page evaluation of gender and education in the United States.

This assessment asks you to consider the ways gender may concretely impact a major societal institution.

By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria:

  • Competency 1: Critically analyze issues related to gender and communication.
    • Explain how K–12 schools can intentionally or unintentionally enforce gender roles.
    • Describe how colleges and universities either support or disregard gender issues on campus.
  • Competency 4: Identify effective leadership strategies that promote effective communication between men and women.
    • Summarize the role of gender in the student–instructor dynamic.
    • Describe how to reduce or eliminate gender bias in the classroom.
  • Competency 5: Communicate effectively in a variety of formats.
    • Communicate effectively and concisely using APA formatting.


    The Assessment 4 Context document reviews key findings from research on gender. You may wish to review the document for an overview of these key concepts and ideas.

Questions to Consider

To deepen your understanding, you are encouraged to consider the questions below and discuss them with a fellow learner, a work associate, an interested friend, or a member of the business community.

For the following questions, refer to the Resources (under the Internet Resources heading) for links to the Lieberman resource and the Barr resource:

  • Do mothers and fathers generally differ in their interaction with children? If so, then how?
  • Do today’s fathers spend more time with their children than their own fathers spent with them?
  • Do you think males and females are growing up at the same pace today as they did in previous eras?

Barr, K. R. (2013). Male and female communication styles [Web log post]. Retrieved from…

Lieberman, S. (n.d.). Differences in male and female communication styles. Retrieved from…

  • Suggested Resources

    The following optional resources are provided to support you in completing the assessment or to provide a helpful context. For additional resources, refer to the Research Resources and Supplemental Resources in the left navigation menu of your courseroom.

    Capella Resources

    Click the links provided to view the following resources:

    Capella Multimedia

    Click the links provided below to view the following multimedia pieces:

    Library Resources

    The following e-books or articles from the Capella University Library are linked directly in this course:

Internet Resources

Access the following resources by clicking the links provided. Please note that URLs change frequently. Permissions for the following links have been either granted or deemed appropriate for educational use at the time of course publication.

Bookstore Resources

The resources listed below are relevant to the topics and assessments in this course and are not required. Unless noted otherwise, these materials are available for purchase from the Capella University Bookstore. When searching the bookstore, be sure to look for the Course ID with the specific –FP (FlexPath) course designation.

  • Fixmer-Oraiz, N., & Wood, J. T. (2019). Gendered lives: Communication, gender, and culture (13th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage.

Assessment Instructions

Many experts believe that education in the United States is gendered. That is, boys and girls are educated and treated differently throughout their academic careers. For this assessment, write an evaluation of gender and education in the United States. Address the following in your evaluation:

  • Are boys and girls taught gender in our public school systems?
  • Are female and male college students given equal support?
  • What differences are there in how college students evaluate male and female instructors?
  • How can gender bias be reduced or eliminated in the classroom?

Use the Capella library to locate current journal articles pertaining to gender-specific training and education, and refer to at least four of those resources in your evaluation. Note: If you use Internet sources, they must be credible. For example, Wikipedia and YouTube are not credible resources.

Additional Requirements

  • Written communication: Written communication should be free of errors that detract from the overall message.
  • APA formatting: Resources and in-text citations should be formatted according to APA (6th edition) style and formatting.
  • Font and font size: Times New Roman, 12 point, double-spaced. Use Microsoft Word.
  • Number of resources: 4 or more.
  • Length: 3–4 pages.


We enter a gendered society at birth and continue to receive messages about gender throughout our lives. (Wood & Bodey, 2011, p. 100). Is gender learned? Are we born with a specific gender? What does the research suggest? These are the questions we often consider when we study gender.

As you explore these questions, think about how foundational pieces of our identities are shaped throughout our life. It is important to understand that our identities are formed by our culture and other key influences that shape who we are as we grow and develop. The truth is that we do not passively receive gender, but, rather, we select messages to accept or reject over time.

  • Gender is learned.
    • We are born with our sex (male, female), and we learn our gender (masculine, feminine).
    • We learn and express our gender through interactions with others and with the media.
  • Cultures create gender by giving social meanings to biological sex.
    • Gender differs from culture to culture.
    • Currently, in the United States, masculinity is associated with strength, ambition, rationality, and emotional control.
    • Currently, in the United States, femininity is associated with physical attractiveness, deferential and nurturing behavior, emotional expression, and concern with people and relationships.
  • Gender is not stable.
    • Cultural and individual meanings of gender can change over time and context.
    • New identity labels (people who reject traditional gender categories) challenge our ideas about gender.
    • Gender is a relational concept. We can only understand masculinity in relation to femininity, and vice versa. Changing ideas about one gender affect the other.
  • Gender is a social, symbolic construction that varies across cultures, over time within a given culture, over the course of individuals’ life spans, and in relation to the other gender.
    • Self-as-object is a central process in personal identity formation. In this process, we are able to think about, reflect upon, and respond to ourselves. As we internalize others’ views of us, their views become important to how we see and evaluate ourselves.
    • Monitoring is a second process in identity formation, in which we engage in internal dialogues with these internalized perspectives. Through these dialogues, we remind ourselves what others have told us to think, do, look like, feel, and so on.

Fixmer-Oraiz, N., & Wood, J. T. (2019). Gendered lives: Communication, gender, and culture (13th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage.

Wood, J. T., & Bodey, K. R. (2010). Gendered lives: Communication, gender and culture [Instructor’s Resource Manual]. Beverly, MA: Wadsworth.

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