A meta-analysis of gender gap in student achievement in African countries
We conducted a meta-analysis to examine gender differences in educational assessments in African countries. We analyzed the primary database of the Southern and Eastern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ) assessments. This study included a review of the relevant literature on meta-analysis techniques, and an overview of SACMEQ and gender issues in kindergarten (K)–12 in developing countries. The process of meta-analysis employed in this methodological study included searching, coding, calculation of effect sizes and their variances, weighting, confidence interval plots, Q test, funnel plots, and a discussion of results, implications, and future research. We found a small significant gender difference in mathematics in favor of boys and an insignificant gender difference in reading. Moreover, fertility rate was found to be an important predictor of gender gap in reading and math. Finally, we suggest a few implications for theoretical perspectives by connecting the key findings.