Girls try harder to beat the boys, study shows

January 7, 2000

Girls outperform boys at GCSE level partly because they know they have to try harder to make the grade in the male-dominated workplace, according to new research.

Becky Francis, at Greenwich University's school of post-compulsory education, said that generally schoolgirls tend to set their career sights higher than in the past. At the same time they realise that they have to be doubly good to compete with boys for the best jobs.

Dr Francis said that the "gender gap" at GCSE could be explained because girls' constructions of femininity had changed over the past 20 years to include higher career aspirations while male aspirations had stayed the same.

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