American girls surpass boys in engineering, tech and literacy tests

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18th May 2016 12:48 - Engineering

According to a recent U.S national figures, girls in eighth-grade are surpassing the boys in engineering, technology and literacy tests.

The females were found to score three points higher than boys in total, which is perhaps surprising as boys generally score higher than girls in science and maths tests, according to figures from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. However, the same Organization said that female pupils have been starting to improve in science and maths subjects in recent years.

The female eighth-graders were also found to do better than males when the test questions related to information and communication technology by 6 points, as well as communication and collaboration, with 5 points.

According to the statistics, 45 per cent of girls scored proficient or better on the test, in comparison with 42 per cent of the male pupils.

When looking at the statistics by race, it was found that white female pupils averaged 162 points out of 300, whereas while male pupils averaged 158 points. The black female pupils averaged 131 points out of 300, in comparison with black male pupils who averaged 126 points. The females who identified themselves as either Asian or Hispanic were found to be on the same average level with their male peers.

The test required the eighth-grade pupils to use laptops to complete scenario-based challenges and solve real-world problems. For example, the problems they had to solve were how to address pollution caused by the population increase in Chicago, as well as how to develop a cheap and safe bike path campaign for a new recreation centre for teenagers.

Of the pupils who took the test, just 43 per cent of the eighth-graders possessed the skills needed for technology-based problem solving.

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