A burden for the boys: Evidence of stereotype threat in boys' reading performance

Pascal Pansu , Isabelle Régner , Sylvaian Max , Pascale Colé , John Nezlek , Pascal Huguet


There is ample evidence that Stereotype Threat (ST) contributes to gender differences favoring males on standardized math tests; however, whether ST also contributes to gender differences favoring females in reading remains unanswered. This is surprising as the gender gap in reading is three times bigger than the gender gap in math (OECD, 2014). In this study, we examined whether ST may explain gender differences favoring schoolgirls in reading, assuming that boys are negatively stereotyped in this domain. Eighty students (3rd grade) took a reading test while being assigned to either a threat or a reduced-threat condition (test presented as diagnostic of reading abilities versus as a game, respectively). Boys underperformed girls in the threat condition, whereas they outperformed girls in the reduced-threat condition. Consistent with ST theory, this pattern was obtained only among highly-identified students. These findings offer another explanation for the well-known gender gap favoring girls in reading.
Author Pascal Pansu
Pascal Pansu,,
, Isabelle Régner
Isabelle Régner,,
, Sylvaian Max
Sylvaian Max,,
, Pascale Colé
Pascale Colé,,
, John Nezlek (Wydział Zamiejscowy w Poznaniu)
John Nezlek,,
- Wydział Zamiejscowy w Poznaniu
, Pascal Huguet
Pascal Huguet,,
Journal seriesJournal of Experimental Social Psychology, ISSN 0022-1031, (A 35 pkt)
Issue year2016
Publication size in sheets0.5
Keywords in English Stereotype threat; Children; Reading performance; Gender differences
ASJC Classification3312 Sociology and Political Science; 3207 Social Psychology
URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022103116301202
Languageen angielski
Nezlek.J_a burden for the boys_2016_all.pdf 101.75 KB
Score (nominal)35
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2016 = 1.437; WoS Impact Factor: 2016 = 2.159 (2) - 2016=2.974 (5)
Citation count*58 (2021-01-15)
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