Simple Reason Why Gender Difference Influence Students Performance

5 min readMar 12, 2023

The problem of students’ under-performance in tertiary institution especially in mathematics or science related subjects for final year students in also reflected in the poor choice of undergraduate project topics in Nigeria and this has been a much-discussed educational issue. In solving any problem however, it is pertinent to understand the causes of such problems. Many causes or agents have been studied as the etiological starting point for investigating the phenomena of school failure or success. These causes are looked into from several perspectives including the role of the students, teachers, parents or family, school environment, society, government etc.

Gender is one of such factors also mentioned in literature to have considerable effects on students’ academic performances especially in science subjects. Gender is the range of physical, biological, mental and behavioural characteristics pertaining to and differentiating between the feminine and masculine (female and male) population. The importance of examining performance in relation to gender is based primarily on the socio-cultural differences between girls and boys. Some vocations and professions have been regarded as men’s (engineering, arts and crafts, agriculture etc.) while others as women’s (catering, typing, nursing etc.). On the other hand, chores like dishes washing, cooking, cleaning and so on is assigned to the girls. In a nutshell, what are regarded as complex and difficult tasks are allocated to boys whereas girls are expected to handle the relatively easy and less demanding tasks. As a result of this way of thinking the larger society has tended to see girls as a weaker sex”.


Gender is a specially constructed phenomenon that is brought about as society ascribes different roles, duties, behaviours, and mannerisms to the two sexes. It is a social connotation that has sound psychological background, and it is used to refer to specific cultural patterns of behaviour that are attributed to human sexes. Gender relates to cultural attributes of both males and females. Gender is a psychological experience of being a male or female. It has to do with personality and central components of self-concept. Unlike sex, which is concerned with, only the distinction between male and female based on biological characteristics, gender encompasses other personality attributes as roles, orientation and identity based on individual’s conceptualization of self. For instance, gender refers to a socio-cultural construct that connotes the differentiated roles and responsibilities of men and women in a particular society.

This definition implies that gender determines the role, which one plays in relation to general political, cultural, social and economic system of the society. Gender refers to all the characteristics of male and female, which a particular society has determined and assigned each sex. Also, gender can be seen as the dichotomy of roles culturally imposed on the sexes. Gender stereotype in school as “hidden curriculum” which send out messages to girls to conform to role expectation.

In most societies, gender has roles based on the women folk, preventing their participating in, and benefiting from development efforts. This has created a big psychological alienation or depression in the minds of the female students. As a result, boys dominate Social Studies, Mathematics, Physics, Mathematics and Environmental studies classes while the girls go into reading languages and Arts. United Nations (UN) adopted various resolutions to ensure equal opportunities for all gender in education and empowerment.


Academic achievement has to do with what a learn is able to accomplish by execution of class work in the school. Academic achievement as something a learner do or achieve at school, college or university, in class, in a laboratory or field work. Academic achievement refers to achievement of individuals’ objective to various types of knowledge and skills. According to the author the objective are established based on the age, prior learning and capacity of individuals with regards to education, socialization and qualification. Some of the purposes of academic achievement measurement are as follows: to determine the relative effectiveness of a programme in terms of students’ behavioural outputs; to identify students growth or lack of growth in acquiring desirable knowledge skills, attitudes and social values; to help teachers determine the effectiveness of their teaching technique and learning material; to help motivate students to learn as they discover their progress or lack of progress in given task; to encourage students to develop a sense of discipline and systematic study habits; to acquaint parents or guardians with their children performance; to predict the general trend in the development of teaching learning process; to make reliable decision about education planning and to provide educational administrators with adequate information about teachers effectiveness and school need.


Gender refers to socially constructed differences between male and female. Scholars, policymakers, and practitioners have observed and seem to agree upon socially constructed differences between male and female and its significant effects in their lives. Studies conducted across the world among the students studying in different levels found a significant gender difference in academic performance. Several studies have reported that female students outperform their male counterparts.

Gender issue has become the talk of today’s forum. Although the literacy rate is more among the boys than girls, it is quite interesting to observe that girls are securing better ranks than boys in almost all competitive examinations. The achievements gap among boys and girls as a result of sex differences in belief students hold about mathematics as a discipline. In short available literature agree that particular conditions can bring about the differential performance between boys and girls, with varying degrees and points of emphasis on subject such as mathematics, BSc and hnd research projects. Although the problem has been studied for decades, in other countries especially in the west the result so far reported by different researchers are inconsistent and inconclusive. In patriarchal structure have a powerful influence on differential performance and the education system is a reflection of societies thinking about the education of girls. The educational provision made for boys and girls were biased towards the hegemony of boys. In recent years, the government has attempted to increase the participation rates of girls in the sphere of education, but enrolment rates are still low, especially in rural areas. Presently, but government is paying much attention on the education of girls, as shown in the education program of the country.