Gender Schema Theory: Cognitive Explanations for Gender

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  • Created by: rhallett
  • Created on: 21-09-15 19:46
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  • Gender Schema Theory
    • Children develop a set of ideas and beliefs about gender (schema) and this shapes gender
    • Martin & Halverson
      • I) Child's gender shaped by mental processes, environment is important as a source of information about gender
      • II) Gender becomes important than Kohlberg, before child reaches Constancy and fully understands gender
      • III) Once child reaches 2/3 they start to develop a schema; a representation or set of ideals about gender
      • IV) Child actively seeks out info from the environment which shapes schema and influenced by parents schema
      • VI) Toys and activities become categorised by gender and child avoids activities linked to the other gender
      • V) Child ignores info linked to the other gender or 'out-group' which doesn't fir in with their schemas which makes gender attributes rigid
    • Basically:    1) mental processes    2) earlier than Kohlberg 3) gender identity; schema       4) seek out same sex info.            5) ignore info that goes against schema       6) catagorise 'male' and 'female' activites
    • Active process Mental process Earlier than kholberg Rigid Ignore juxt. info. Catagorise behav. Influence from parents
    • Evaluations
      • +Bussey; children develop interests in gender earlier
      • +Bradbard; children develop interests in gender earlier
      • +63 Canadian 2/3yr olds, decide which dolls should do various gendered tasks eg shaving, vacuuming etc; children haven't reached Constancy, early age schema development
      • -Slaby& Frey; does NOT; children are older, reached Constancy, argues that all children of that age has reached Constancy


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