Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in School Psychology


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Dihoff, Roberta


Femininity; Masculinity; Sex differences


Educational Psychology


There are many stereotypes pertaining to what is a typical male and typical female characteristic. The purpose of this study was to determine the difference in attitudes towards these characteristics between two different generations. Many theorists feel that masculine and feminine characteristics are on opposite poles of a continuous spectrum, while others feel it is possible to possess both masculine and feminine characteristics, termed androgyny. The Bem Sex Role Inventory, the measure utilized in the present study, was developed to measure masculine and feminine characteristics, as well as the concept of androgyny (Bem, 1974).

The sample in this study consisted of 90 participants. Each subject completed the BSRI. This is a 60 item self-report measure. Subjects indicated how well the personality characteristics described themselves. Findings were there were no significant differences found between generations in their responses to the BSRI. However, there was a significant difference between males and females in each generation. There was no interaction effect between generation and gender regarding responses to the BSRI. In conclusion, typical male and female characteristics were endorsed by the subjects of this study. Consistent with previous literature, significant differences were found between male and female responses to the BSRI.