-- Robert Preidt
FRIDAY, Feb. 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Students in
co-educational schools get the same quality of education as those
in girls- or boys-only schools, a new review shows.
The findings challenge claims by supporters of single-sex
schools that separating boys and girls boosts their academic
interest and performance, the researchers said.
The investigators analyzed the findings of 184 studies conducted
between 1968 and 2013. More than 1.6 million kindergarten to
12th-grade students in 21 countries were involved. The studies
assessed students' abilities in math, science and verbal skills, as
well as things such as attitudes about school, aggression and body
Little difference emerged between students at co-ed schools and
those at single-sex schools, according to the review published
online Feb. 3 in the journal
One theory put forward by proponents of single-sex education is
that girls are more likely to do better in traditionally
male-dominated subjects such as math and science if no boys are in
"The theoretical approach termed 'girl power' argues that girls lag behind boys in some subjects in co-ed classrooms," said study co-author Erin Pahlke, of Whitman College in Walla Walla, Wash. "This is not supported by our analysis and, moreover, girls' educational aspirations were not higher in single-sex schools."
The study authors said there is a shortage of studies on
single-sex education among poor and ethnic minority students,
particularly in the United States, and called for more research
into these groups.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has
information about students'
health and academic success.
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