According to David Chadwell, professor in charge of developing state programs on single-sex education in the United States and international lecturer on the topic, single-sex schools are not necessarily better that co-ed ones. Nonetheless, he is sure that some pedagogical techniques foster a better performance for boys and girls by taking advantage of the specificities of their gender.
Then, is there an ideal recipe? As regards the next Diploma he will be dictating in coordination with Universidad de Piura, the specialist points out the advantages of single-sex education and the path which teachers should follow to get closer to their students.
Why should single-sex education be regarded as an option?
Education oriented towards students of a same sex creates a different environment both for teachers as well as for students. Often, this environment allows for students to make the most out of learning opportunities presented by teachers in a much better way than in another context.
Should single-sex education be implemented as a universal measure?
Single-sex education could be the best alternative for some teachers and for some students. Nothing is the same for everyone. However, the most important thing is for all teachers to understand which is the best way to teach men and women.
What are the differences in learning among men and women?
It would be quite difficult to briefly explain the differences, because a plain separation runs the risk of falling into stereotypes; it should be clear that not all boys are the same, and that not all girls are the same either. Nonetheless, there is evidence in research and practical experience which indicate trends among men and women, especially in six aspects: sight, hearing, commitment, response, processing and choice. But, even when these trends can be evident, they do not appear in the same level in all boys and girls.
Is there an ideal didactic for single-sex education?
A teacher’s best strategy is to achieve his students’ commitment. It is about using the pedagogic didactics to improve the students’ commitment. I think that covers it all. There is not an exclusive strategy for women or an exclusive strategy for men. We should aim at increasing the connection and the structure within the class.
How can this be done?
Teachers should realize that their students are different in many ways and that single-sex instruction is important. Afterwards, more can be learned about the differences between boys and girls, training, forming a group of professionals at schools to assess the situation, observe students, analyze performance by gender, etc. The key is to adjust teaching strategies to get students to commit themselves and to work in teams with other teachers.
Training. David Chadwell will be in charge of the Diploma “New Perspectives on Teaching Boys and Girls”, dictated by Universidad de Piura in a 100% online and English format. The course will outline the adequate measures to reach boys and girls and real experiences will be shared among participants. Classes will begin in October with limited vacancies. For more information, contact Carola García at (073)28-4500, extension 3554 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also check this interview in Spanish.