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Qualitative Research - Essay Example

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The paper entitled, “The role of gender in academic achievement” by Lea Hubbard (2005) published in the International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education [Vol 18 (5): 605-623] depicts the author’s qualitative ethnographic study of 30 high-achieving, low income…
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Qualitative Research

Hubbard reckons the gendered attitudes and beliefs to arise from a merging of the students’ school, family and community ethos. Her results prompt the author to question “the wisdom of Ogbu’s undifferentiated treatment of the African American student population.” (p. 605).
In her study, Hubbard found that a combination of ethnicity, class and gender determined the academic achievements of her subjects whereas Ogbu had asserted that under-achievement in schools by minority students was influenced essentially by cultural factors, and not by any inherent deficiency of racial, genetic or academic traits. According to Hubbard, “Recognizing the salience of gender in constructing academic identities extends the work Ogbu started and corrects an oversight that plagues his work.” (p. 606).
Hubbard has chosen to focus on cases of successful minority students rather than look to explain the reasons for minority students’ failure. Through this study, Hubbard has tried to find answers to several questions including how to “account for the relative success of African American students who not only stay in school but also do well and become eligible for college?” What made the subjects of her study “not assume an ‘oppositional stance’, as Ogbu’s theory predicts?” and “why are female African American high school students typically more academically successful than their male counterparts?”
The gender issue in the educational field is not a new phenomenon and it is not restricted to any ethnic group. In fact, low aspirations coupled with poor examination results in boys seem to be a global problem. Furthermore, gender-based differentiation vis a vis over-achieving girls and under-achieving boys has become a common feature in recent years so that experts in education are strongly advocating specific strategies intended to improve educational outcomes for ... Read More
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