Sociology Investigation

9 September 2016

With the use of covert participant observation and study of secondary data, I will be analyzing and investigation the question “Why do girls do better at school than boys? ” I will come to a conclusion on whether this question is correct and if it is true or not, then explaining the reasons why they do better or why they do not. Hypothesis – We believe that girls do better in school and this is because most girls can multi task and think about their future much more than boys who are trying to “live in the moment”.

Boys are also socialized into being violent and being slightly rebellious so will not concentrate enough in lessons. Girls are however socialized to be respectable and get a good job to help the family and also to be sensible so they can raise children. Finally I feel girls generally can be distracted one day for many reasons but keep quiet and everyone knows not to annoy them, but on the other hand boys if they get distracted tend to disturb everyone around them.

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Why do girls do better than

Investigation Discussion of Secondary Data – In some research it highlights how boys by the age of eight are meant to have adopted these boys by the age of eight are meant to have adopted these perceptions and that from that age the perceptions and that from that age the gap between intelligence is visible. They saw that boys could become products of self-fulfilling prophecy. The research also shows that boys lag behind girls in nearly all subjects at A-level and GCSE.

Girls from reception to year 5 said that girls were cleverer, performed better and more focused and respectful. Boys in reception, yr1 and yr2 had an equal split between boys and girls and in yr3 they all said girls were better showing as they get older the gap is bigger and more visible to see. Adults that also believe girls do better the research showed. In a separate investigation two groups we held both full of boys, the first was told that girls performed better than girls and the second were not.

The first group performed significantly worse than the second. This could show how their poor performance could be because of low expectations of teachers. Stats – 25. 5% of entries by girls were A/A* compared with 19. 5% for boys. The gap narrows at A-level, with 27. 6% of entries which are girls were awarded A/A* compared with 26. 1%. Method – I am going to use covert participant observation to investigate my hypothesis. This will involve watching a lesson and recording notes on how behavior and attention differ between boys and girls.

I will make sure that no one knows I’m doing this so they don’t change their behavior to make them look better or alter what they would do because they know they are being watched. It important to control these to make accurate results are noted down. I will then record my results in a need and structure paragraph using qualitative analysis. I am also going to do a survey asking an equal amount of boys and girls from a range of years asking if they think boys or girls do better in school.

This will be good to do as a comparison could be made between my results and secondary data. The pros of this method are that we can easily compare secondary data and also with the survey being quantitative we can make a graph and with the qualitative data we can make a clear and detailed conclusion. The cons are when asking the survey it may be hard to get real opinions as boys may say boys do better in school because of their “honor” but really they believe girls do better.

Ethical issues – Some issues I might face with this investigation is the use of covert participant observation because some people may feel they are being involved with something they don’t want to be involved with and that we are going behind their back as we have not asked them to be involved. They may not feel comfortable with being involved and we have to think about and respect that. Finally if we are watching teacher they may not feel that it appropriate for us to watch them and make notes as they are our elders and they may believe we are judging them.

Pilot Study – I made my first pilot study in the first lesson of planning. Something I noticed were that the group behind us of all girls was planning and mind mapping ideas about how they could go about their investigation and started writing the norms. However the group of boys at the back we getting distracted said they would do it after the holiday and were clearly bored so tried to practice the covert participant observation method but were laughing and not doing it properly by as they were laughing and we knew they were watching us In turn automatically changing our behavior towards them.

Evaluation of pilot study – From the pilot study we see that our hypothesis was correct and girls are more focused which maybe a reason why they have been shown to do better in school than boys. The study also highlighted how if you are caught using covert participant observation then people will change their behavior distracting them as well from their work also confirming my ideas about how boys distract everyone around them when they are bored. Presentation of results – Notes: * Girls seemed to settle in a lot quicker than boys. * More boys got more penalties than girls * Boys asking for pens and equipment Couples of boys and girls work better than two boys sitting together *

Boys seen to distract a lot of people around then and the whole class are disturbed and the teacher had to stop * Boys are always the once making funny comments and trying to be the jokers * Some boys got a bad result in the end of term test they seem to just be fine with it and even use it as something to laugh about, also some girls do that and on one hand they may have struggled and then they get help but on the other they do sometimes use it as an excuse maybe just because they didn’t revise or concentrate in lessons Conclusion and discussion of results – My results strongly collaborate my hypothesis as they indicate that boys’ behavior is a lot worse than those of girls and this I feel is directly related to the lower grades on average that girls get.

My results also show how boys have been socialized into being the class clowns and that to be popular they have to make rude or annoying comments that people laugh at. This highlights the idea about some boys just thinking about the current time and not there future, whereas on the other hand girls are thinking about their future. On the whole my results did collaborate with my hypothesis and from the results I got I feel girls are more focused and doing this investigation opened my eyes up to this fact and how boys do seem to be a lot less bothered and this in turn affects their school in terms of grades and results they receive at the end of their schooling lives.

Evaluation of method – I used covert participant observation to gather qualitative information, this gave me detailed results that a structured conclusion would be made from. There were no problems with the use of the covert participant observation method and at the end I also spoke to some people and told them they had been filmed, they seemed fine about it but I was weary that some people may have not liked being watched and that is understandable so I was careful. The use of the survey allowed me to compare data that was gathered in research and the results we found out. Although next time I feel I could have asked a wider range of people and also a wider range of ages because students can often lie to make their sex or the opposite sex seem better and have biases because of one reason or another.

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