At a Glance

Discipline

  • Social Sciences

Instructional Level

  • College & CEGEP

Course

  • Sociology
  • Individual and Society

Tasks in Workflow

Social Plane(s)

  • Group
  • Whole Class

Type of Tasks

  • Discussing
  • Presenting

Technical Details

Class size

  • Small (20-49)

Time

Brief segment of class period (< 20 mins)

Purpose

  • Review & consolidation
  • Assessment & feedback

Overview

After establishing general knowledge about gender roles through readings, in class lectures, and a film analysis of the first episode of Madmen, students are split into groups of 4-6 to list characteristics associated with each of the professions given by the teacher (nurse, engineer, teacher, manager, flight attendant, lawyer).

Students are then asked to discuss what qualifies a person as being good or bad in their job in order to better understand the qualifications underlying each profession. The instructor then stops the activity around half way through and asks the students to identify which jobs pay more or less. In ...

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After establishing general knowledge about gender roles through readings, in class lectures, and a film analysis of the first episode of Madmen, students are split into groups of 4-6 to list characteristics associated with each of the professions given by the teacher (nurse, engineer, teacher, manager, flight attendant, lawyer).

Students are then asked to discuss what qualifies a person as being good or bad in their job in order to better understand the qualifications underlying each profession. The instructor then stops the activity around half way through and asks the students to identify which jobs pay more or less. In order to answer this they take into account qualifications and statistics/additional research provided.

As a group, students are asked to identify patterns between the list of gendered characteristics or stereotypes and the monetary value they assigned each job. Each group then gives a brief presentation to the class about their reasoning for the characteristics and any patterns they saw.

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Workflow & Materials

Activity Workflow

Gender and Job Inequality

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Contributor's Notes

Benefits

  • The use of easily identifiable professions allows students to come into the activity with their own preconceived notions of stereotypes that they can question during the activity
  • Students begin to think more deeply about the link between socialization and labor. This helps them question why certain jobs have great gender imbalances and the reasons behind this (actual intellectual/physical difference or the result of socially learned behaviours)
  • Discussions over qualifications and learning to actual pay of certain jobs helps them think about how we assign value to certain roles over others (rational versus emotional intelligence)

Challenges

  • The choice of jobs may seem arbitrary since the measure of comparison between the jobs is somewhat problematic given that they require different skill level or education (for example comparing a flight attendant to a doctor.)
  • A general counterpoint or additional perspective to explore when looking at the link between gender and pay gap is the level of education required for each job. Students may want to discuss the way in which this could be used to assign value to jobs

Tips

  • Carry out the activity in discrete stages separated by questions as prompts in order to get students to first identify their own assumptions. Then try and associate gender stereotypes and pay gap with the way they described each job intuitively
  • It’s important to establish some previous knowledge first about gender roles. If this is a discussion about gender stereotypes it’s important that gender stereotypes are established in a previous class or in the reading

Feedback

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