Attitudes and self-beliefs of ability towards mathematics and science and their effects on career choices A case study with Macao-chinese girls

ANA MARIA, CORREIA and CLARA, FERNANDES and JOAO, SAMPAIO MAIA (2015) Attitudes and self-beliefs of ability towards mathematics and science and their effects on career choices A case study with Macao-chinese girls. In: Third International Conference on Advances In Economics, Social Science and Human Behaviour Study - ESSHBS 2015, 28-29 December, 2015, Bangkok, Thailand.

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Abstract

This study explores girls’ attitudes and selfassessment of abilities towards mathematics and science and its effects on career preferences. Results from Pisa 2012 stated that Macao girls do as well as boys in mathematics and science. However, less than 0,5% of Macao girls contemplate pursuing a career in mathematics related fields and less than 2% contemplate pursuing a career in science related areas. In this research, which follows a quantitative design and was developed in the academic year of 2013/2014, we studied the female students of Macao secondary schools who also attended a Foreign Language course at Macao Portuguese School. The study is focused on a sample of 45 elements. The “Modified Fennema-Sherman Mathematics and Science Attitude Scales” was adapted to measure students selfbeliefs and attitudes towards mathematics and science along four domains, namely (a) confidence, (b) usefulness, (c) mathematics and science as a male domain, and (d) students’ perceptions of their teachers’ expectations regarding the abilities of male and female students in both subjects. The results suggested that (1) the female students’ self-beliefs on abilities in mathematics and science are below average; (2) the female students’ attitudes towards mathematics and science are positive; (3) the students attitudes and self-assessment of abilities towards mathematics and science are not significantly related to their intended choice of university degree; (4) the female students do not assume mathematics and science as a male domain; and (5) the female students do not perceive their teachers’ expectations regarding girls’ mathematics and science skills as lower than boys’ mathematics and science skills.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: gender gap, Macao, STEM
Depositing User: Mr. John Steve
Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2019 10:10
Last Modified: 02 Apr 2019 10:10
URI: http://publications.theired.org/id/eprint/1078

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