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Comparing the reading abilities of boys and girls Featured science projectScience project video

Abstract

The purpose of this science project is to compare the reading abilities of boys and girls.

Hypothesis

Girls are better at reading than boys.

Scientific Terms

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI)

Background

 

Reading and gender


Most studies done recently show that girls are outperforming boys on reading assessments. Studies have also found that nearly 50% of girls read for at least 30 minutes a day compared to only 30% of boys who do the same.

Reading assessments conducted at international levels indicate that girls are outperforming boys in their reading skills. The National Assessment in Educational Progress (NEAP) conducted in the United States has indicated that the reading standards of boys is on the decline, whereas the reading level of girls is on the rise.

Researchers recently found that boys and girls process language differently. Boys tend to process language using the sensory parts of the brain. This means that when boys are reading and listening, they tend to use the visual and auditory parts of the brain. As for girls, when they are reading, they tend to use the part of the brain that processes language and abstract thinking. These findings were determined through the use of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) on boys and girls aged 9 to 15 while they were writing and spelling.

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Complexity level:
4
Project cost ($):
0
Time required:
1 hour for preparation and a day for to conduct the reading tests
Material availability:
You will need access to a quiet room and the assistance of an English teacher
Safety concerns:

None