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Gender and Status Effects in Student E-Mails to Staff


Journal of Computer Assisted Learning Volume 22, Number 5, ISSN 1365-2729 Publisher: Wiley


This study aimed to examine gender and status effects in the kind of e-mails used to manage course administrative issues in an educational setting. Students were asked to respond to an e-mail presented as being from a member of staff, informing them of failure to submit coursework and asking for an explanation to be provided. The sex and status of the sender were varied. The data showed both gender and status effects. The men more frequently adopted an assertive stance, while the women more frequently referred to work-related issues in a conciliatory way. A number of features of the e-mails varied according to the sex of the participant, and the status and sex of the sender. There was evidence of a greater influence of status in features of the replies from the men, although the effect of this varied according to the sex of the sender. In addition, accommodation to the gender-stereotypes of the senders was evident in features of the data from both men and women.


O'Neill, R. & Colley, A. (2006). Gender and Status Effects in Student E-Mails to Staff. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 22(5), 360-367. Wiley. Retrieved August 12, 2020 from .

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