Read the article titled, “The Gender Similarities Hypothesis” by Dr. Janet Hyde. CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE ARTICLE. Or, you may access the article any time by going to the “Additional Readings” folder within the “Files” section of Canvas.
On Table 1 in the article, Hyde lists the results of major meta-analyses of research on psychological gender differences. The table lists a ton of characteristics that have been examined for gender differences, and the size of these differences is reported in the far right column, labeled d. In statistics, this value is known as “Cohen’s d” and is a measure of effect size. In other words, it indicates how big of a difference was measured between two groups (in this case males and females).
Since this isn’t a statistics class, we won’t be covering how to actually calculate this value. However, interpreting this value is fairly straightforward. A d value between 0 and 0.2 is considered to be a small difference, 0.2 – 0.5 is considered medium, and 0.5 and above is considered to be a large difference. The sign (+ or -) does not matter when it comes to the effect size. Instead, the sign indicates the direction of the effect. In this research, positive values indicate that men scored higher, and negative values indicate that women scored higher.
For example, the very first value listed on the table is d = -0.14 and the variable is “mathematics computation.” This means that in the 1990 study listed on that table, women tended to score higher (because the sign was negative) on mathematics computation compared to men. However, a -0.14 value is considered to be a “small” difference as discussed above.
For this assignment, discuss a variable from the table that you feel is interesting, or surprising, in terms of gender differences. You might consider any of the following in your discussion: Is there a variable that measured as only a small difference when you would have expected there to be a large one? Are there any differences that were in the opposite direction as what you might have expected? Or, perhaps you might discuss what you feel is a general perception in our society, yet the results of this research suggest otherwise.