At SXSWedu 2016, Julie Evans shared new 2015 Speak Up data on whether or not there are differences in how girls and boys approach digital learning as part of a session on gender sensitivity in gaming.
Students use technology for learning in four ways:
1.) teacher directed
2.) student self–initiated
Out of school:
3.) supporting schoolwork
4.) supporting personal learning
More than 50 percent of both girls and boys say “using technology in my classes increases my interest in learning.”
Speak Up 2015 reports on some of the ways teachers are using technology for learning (not much difference by gender)
And, Speak Up 2015 reports on some of the ways students are directing their own learning with technology outside of school (greater difference by gender)
Speak Up 2015 also asked about interest in coding – by age level and gender – and the results showed that interest in coding is greatest in elementary school for both boys and girls.
When it comes to games, Speak Up shows the boys – especially middle-school aged boys – are the most likely to turn to an online game or virtual simulation for self-directed learning.
Girls and boys report that they play games for different reasons. Via Speak Up 2015, they told us:
1.) Games increase my interest in school
2.) Games provide a more interesting way to learn
3.) Games make it easier to understand difficult concepts
4.) I learn more through a game
5.) Games personalize my learning
1.) Games make it easier to understand difficult concepts
2.) Games increase my interest in school
3.) Games provide a more interesting way to learn
4.) Games adapt to what I know or need to know
5.) I am a better thinker and problem solver when I play games
View Julie’s SXSWedu presentation for examples of games from BrainPop and for resources to help you evaluate gender sensitivity in games.