Gender Role Expectations of Juveniles*


  • *

    This study was supported by PHS research grant no. NIH MH27435, NIMH (Center for Studies of Crime and Delinquency). The authors are grateful for the suggestions of Donald R. Ploch and Randall Wessel on an earlier draft of this paper. This is a revised version of a paper read at the meeting of the Southern Sociological Society, New Orleans, March 30, 1978. Stephen Norland's address is: Department of Sociology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37916.


This paper discusses the development of two five-item Likert scales that classify juveniles' gender role expectations as highly traditional to nontraditional. One is composed of behavioral expectations that juveniles define as traditionally feminine and the other is composed of expectations they define as traditionally masculine. With a sample of junior and senior high school students, correlational and factor analyses of scale items were conducted to assess the validity of the assumptions of bipolarity and unidimensionality common in theoretical conceptualizations of gender roles. The results suggest that feminine and masculine role expectations are not bipolar opposites and do not form a unidimensional continuum.