When I ask why, she answers without hesitation. If one thing goes wrong, I just want it to go away and feel like it never happened. She is terrified to be seen as anything less than extraordinary. By the time they go to college, they are more vulnerable to depression, anxiety and stress. But evidence suggests that girls may be especially vulnerable when it comes to failing, and being spared from it.
From elementary school through college, girls are more disciplined about their schoolwork than boys; they study harder and get better grades.
Girls as young as six years old believe that brilliance is a male trait, according research into gender stereotypes. The US-based study also found that, unlike boys, girls do not believe that achieving good grades in school is related to innate abilities. Andrei Cimpian, a co-author of the research from New York University, said that the work highlights how even young children can absorb and be influenced by gender stereotypes — such as the idea that brilliance or giftedness is more common in men. They were then presented with a series of pictures showing pairs of adults, some same-sex, some opposite sex, and were asked to pick which they thought was highly intelligent. Taken together, the results reveal that girls of five years old are just as likely as boys to associate brilliance with their own gender.
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