Dr. Laura Scholes Seminar – Challenging Masculinities Associated with Boys’ Failure in Reading

Dr. Laura Scholes (Queensland University of Technology) will present findings from her Australian Research Council Discovery study, Challenging Masculinities Associated with Boys’ Failure in Reading. Motivated to make visible any differences between groups of boys, this study builds on research into literacy in situ, how it is acquired, and mediated, within particular social and cultural contexts. As literacy has social meaning, elementary school boys position reading within their identities, which in turn influences their attitudes, actions and learning. Masculinities that include a reluctance to read impact on engagement, practice, and the cumulative influence that exposure to print has on reading outcomes.


Co-hosted with LLED

Date: Wednesday, September 20
Time: 2 – 3:30 PM
Location: Ponderosa Multipurpose Room, PCOH 2012


This seminar presents mixed method data from a survey (n=297) and follow up semi-structured interviews (n=34) that asked elementary school students about their attitudes, beliefs and enjoyment of a range of activities including reading. Additional information was also collected concerning each student’s reading level, reading frequency and the socioeconomic status of the participants’ school community. Analysis of data identified six clusters of students who presented within group commonalities and between group differences. Through the boys’ own interpretations inflections in boys’ experiences as readers are highlighted with diversity and differences of the six groups of boys identified.

Dr. Laura Scholes

Laura Scholes is particularly interested in socio-cultural influences on boys’ everyday reading experiences and how notions of masculinity influence attitudes towards reading and subsequently engagement in such endeavors. Laura has written a number of books including Boys, Masculinities and Reading: Gender Identity and Literacy as Social Practice. Critical Studies in Gender and Sexuality in Education Series. New York, NY: Routledge. https://www.routledge.com/Boys-Masculinities-and-Reading-Gender-Identity-and-Literacy-as-Social/Scholes/p/book/9781138220171.