Why is gender and gender separate

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Phased gender segregation

Schoolchildren are usually taught together (co-education, Section 2, Paragraph 4 of the School Act). Notwithstanding this principle, individual schools can be run as girls 'and boys' schools. In co-educational schools it is possible Separated by gender in individual teaching areas or in phases to teach (monoeducation), for example in sex education. Working in a gender-homogeneous group can be perceived by those involved as a protective and relief space, in which joint experiences with regard to gender-related requirements can also be discussed. Separation of boys and girls can also serve to break up gender dynamics and role assignments that occur in mixed groups. In some case studies, teaching research has found positive effects of gender segregation, for example on the interest and self-confidence of girls in the natural sciences (see e.g. Peters-Bokowski 2019, p. 30 f.). On the other hand, organizational gender segregation implies certain generalizations and carries the risk of reinforcing stereotypes and gender differences. It also puts learners in a difficult situation who are not or do not want to be clearly female or male, as shown in the section Dimensions of Gender. In addition, possible positive effects of monoeducation can also be realized in coeducational learning settings, for example by working towards the equal participation of learners without gender dominance and promoting mutual consideration.

Overall, empirical studies have not produced any clear results on the effects of gender-segregated teaching - neither for girls nor for boys (cf. Budde / Kansteiner / Bossen 2016, p. 29 ff.).

If a school opts for a monoeducation - usually limited to individual subjects or topics as well as grade levels - and thus for an explicit strategy and a "dramatization" of the gender category, thorough reflection and evaluation of the experiences are also essential de-dramatizing approaches important. This includes explaining to the learners the reasons for the gender segregation in an age-appropriate manner. The learners must not get the impression that girls or boys need special support in certain areas because they are generally poorer or less talented there. In addition, it is important that the subsequent merging of the girls 'and boys' courses is carefully monitored so that the possible positive effects of gender-segregated teaching can be secured in the long term.

Used literature

  • Budde, J├╝rgen / Kansteiner, Katja / Bossen, Andrea (2016): Between difference and differentiation. Educational research on mono- and co-education, Wiesbaden.
  • Peters-Bokowski, Angela (2019): Temporary boys and girls' classes, in: Pedagogy (12/2019), pp. 29-31.

further reading

  • Kampshoff, Marita (2012): Gender segregation yes or no ?! in: Kampshoff, Marita / Wiepcke, Claudia (eds.): Handbuch Geschisexforschung und Fachdidaktik, Wiesbaden, pp. 443-454.