More on the Gender Gap for SAT Math Test Scores
A previous CD post showed that high school boys outperform high school girls for high SAT math test scores (see chart above, data here). For perfect 800 scores on the 2009 math SAT test, the ratio of boys to girls is 2.22 to 1 (6,928 to 3,124). What makes this outcome even more interesting are the following data from this SAT report from the College Board:
1. Girls are over-represented in the top 10% of high school students by GPA, which is 57% female and 43% male. Girl also outnumber boys in the second tenth of students by high school rank: 54% to 46%.
2. Girls outnumber boys for GPAs of A+ (60% vs. 40%), A (61% vs. 39%), A- (57% vs. 43%), etc.
3. The average number of years of math study is almost identical: 3.9 years for boys and 3.8 years for girls.
4. For students reporting more than four years of math study, the percentages are equal: 50% of boys and 50% of girls.
5. Both 50% of boys and 50% of girls report that calculus is the highest level of high school mathematics taken.
6. More girls than boys took AP Honors math courses, by a ratio of 117 girls for every 100 boys.
Therefore, it would seem that girls are equally prepared, if not more prepared (more AP math classes), than boys for the SAT math test, and yet boys outperform girls measured both by the difference in mean scores (35 point difference in favor of boys) and the over-representation of boys for scores on the high end (2.22 to 1 ratio for perfect scores), and these differences persist over time.