Differentiating instruction with regard to gender and learning style in a biology class
Torske, Jeanne Rose
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In this investigation, daily lessons, assignments, labs, lectures, and assessments were differentiated with regard to both gender and learning style preference to determine the effect on student in-class performance and classroom dynamics. Males and females were shown to prefer different learning modalities and in-class performance varied with the differentiation technique employed. Students who showed an equal preference for more than one learning style consistently out preformed their peers who only preferred one modality. Additionally, a subpopulation of students was identified based on their learning style preferences. Interestingly, these kinesthetic learners skewed the data and a kinesthetic trend was noted. Kinesthetic male learners on individualized education plans (IEPs) were also found to be underserved in the traditional classroom. Female intrapersonal learners and male kinesthetic learners were found to be at odds throughout the study. Overall, this investigation revealed little difference between the genders with regard to classroom dynamics and class appeal. In general, classroom dynamics and class appeal were improved as a result of the differentiation.