Children becoming more likely to draw women scientists but older kids picture them as men, study shows

March 20, 2018 at 06:50 , by admin

The researchers' interest began with a landmark study from 1966-1977 that found less than one per cent or 28 of 4,807 children drew a female scientist. But in later studies from 1985-2016, 28 per cent of kids drew a female scientist. (Submitted by Vasilia Christidou)

A new study shows more children in the United States are drawing female scientists than ever before, but as they get older they tend to draw more male scientists, meaning they draw what they see.

The findings show kids “are in touch with their world” because more women have become scientists in recent decades, said Alice Eagly, psychology professor at Northwestern University and co-author of the research that assessed children’s views of scientists.

“The fact that children draw fewer women and more men as they get older also shows they’re in touch with their world because … as they learn, science tends to be more male dominated,” Eagly said. “They would pick up on the culture and draw more men.”

In the study called the Development of Children’s Gender-Science Stereotypes, Northwestern University researchers reviewed 78 draw-a-scientist studies of school-age children spanning five decades. Their research was published Tuesday in the journal Child Development.

Read the full story published by CBC News here.

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