Previous studies have found that gender differences in computer-based problem solving can be ameliorated by changes in the software content. A study is reported in this paper which tests the hypothesis that this finding can be explained in terms of gender differences in software engagement. The children (16 boys and 16 girls) were aged between 10 and 11 and were shown four versions of the same computer-based problem: a male stereotyped version (the Pirates); a female stereotyped version (the Princesses); a gender neutral version (the Honeybears) and an abstract version (Blocksworld). The boys preferred the Pirates significantly more than the Princesses. There was no significant differences in the girls' preference for either the Honeybears, the Pirates or the Princesses. Although these findings do not support the hypothesis, they are consistent with research concerned with the effects of gender stereotyping on children's toy selections.
- Software preferences
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Science Applications