Sex Differences in Cooperative and Competitive Attitudes From the 2nd Through the 12th Grades

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Abstract

journal abstract

In spite of a stereotype of male preference for competition and female preference for cooperation, many studies of sex differences in cooperative and competitive behavior and attitudes at different age levels and in different artificial settings have produced inconsistent findings. In this study, attitudinal data from a survey of over 2,400 students in Grades 2-12 were used to depict sex differences in cooperativeness and competitiveness in a natural school setting. Females showed consistently more positive attitudes toward cooperation in school, and males showed consistently more positive attitudes toward competition, with the greatest differences appearing in Grades 8-10. Differences ranged from about .2 to about .9 standard deviation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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