Analysis and Evaluation of the Rationales for Single-Sex Schooling

Rebecca S. Bigler, Amy Roberson Hayes, Lynn Susan Liben

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Amendments passed as part of the No Child Left Behind Act in 2006 made some forms of single-sex (SS) public education legal in the United States. Proponents offer a host of arguments in favor of such schooling. This chapter identifies and evaluates five broad rationales for SS schooling. We conclude that empirical evidence fails to support proponents' claims but nonetheless suggests ways in which to improve coeducation. Specifically, we (a) show that the purported benefits of SS schooling arise from factors confounded with, but not causally linked to, single-sex composition; (b) challenge claims that biological sex is an effective marker of differences relevant to instruction; (c) argue that sexism on the part of teachers and peers persists in SS contexts; and (d) critique the notion that gender per se "disappears" in SS contexts. We also address societal implications of the use of sex-segregated education and conclude that factors found to be beneficial for students should be implemented within coeducational schools.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Child Development and Behavior
PublisherAcademic Press Inc.
Pages225-260
Number of pages36
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Publication series

NameAdvances in Child Development and Behavior
Volume47
ISSN (Print)0065-2407

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Cite this

Bigler, R. S., Hayes, A. R., & Liben, L. S. (2014). Analysis and Evaluation of the Rationales for Single-Sex Schooling In Advances in Child Development and Behavior (pp. 225-260). (Advances in Child Development and Behavior; Vol. 47). Academic Press Inc.. https://doi.org/10.1016/bs.acdb.2014.05.002