Friday, February 24, 2012

Research on attitudes toward girls' participation

A recently published (June 2011) research note on  attitudes toward participation opportunities for girls in sports found that high school students are generally supportive of providing sport opportunities for girls. The research, done by Marni Brown, Erin Ruel, and Stephanie Medley-Rath and published in the Sociology of Sport Journal, examined the attitudes of high school sophomores all over the country. They found that girls are significantly more supportive than boys with competitive male athletes being even less supportive. Racial minorities (with the exception of Latinos) demonstrated greater support for opportunities for girls than did their white peers. When they examined attitudes using socioeconomic class as a variable, the researchers found that as class status increased, support decreased. And lest we think that the northeast is most liberal enclave of all, the study found that support of opportunities for girls by northeasterners was not significantly different than that of southerners.
But again, and in contrast to similar studies of younger students, there was a finding of general support among all demographic groups. The authors speculate that one possible reason for this support is both age and the effects of Title IX in increasing opportunities for girls.