Study Finds No Gender Gap in Computing Skills but a Persisting Gender Gap in Confidence in Those Skills

Researchers at Villanova University in Pennsylvania have produced research that shows women are equal to men in computing skills but on average do not have the confidence in those skills as their male counterparts.

Researchers analyzed the performance of managers in business settings to test whether there are differences between genders when performing a variety of tasks of differing complexity on different computing devices. Subjects’ performance was measured by question accuracy and time taken to complete a task. The researchers also surveyed participants on self-assessed confidence.

The results showed that the gender gap in performance is minimal in accuracy with no differences in time spent, while the gap in confidence in computer skills has remained. Women were less confident of their answers in all scenarios – 3.5 for women versus 3.88 for men on a scale of 1 to 5 – despite having performed equally to men.

The full study, “Gender, Performance, and Self-Efficacy: A Quasi-Experimental Field Study,” was published on the website of the Journal of Computer Information Systems. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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