Date of Award

8-1997

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Dr. Arthur Smith

Abstract

This study looked at the relationship of gender to leisure reading in middle school students. The study used 190 students from 6th-8th grades who resided in Monroe County, New York. Of those 190, 97 were female and 93 were male. A survey was used to measure the reading attitudes and behaviors of the students. It was divided into 3 sections: 2 sections were open-ended statements and 1 section was a Likert-type scale. Answers were analyzed in terms of those that showed either a positive or negative attitude toward leisure reading. The total percentage of students from each grade that liked to read and did not like to read did not differ greatly from 6th-8th grades. But, when looking at the percentages by gender, a slight shift occurred for females and males who liked to read. The percentages of females decreased with each successive grade level while the male percentages increased.

Females outnumbered males for those who liked to read. Even among their own gender, more females liked to read than didn't; yet the opposite existed for the males – more males did not like to read than males who did. Females, overall, appeared to be more positive in their attitudes toward leisure reading and held more positive self-images of themselves as readers than their male counterparts. Many students who did not like to read expressed mixed feelings about their attitudes toward leisure reading.

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