Influence of gender differences on attitudes towards vocational education for selected vocational institutions in Luweero district, Uganda
The study sought to examine the influence of gender differences on attitudes towards vocational education for selected vocational institutions in Luweero district, Uganda. The objectives of the study were; to examine the social – cultural factors that influence the male and female students attitudes towards vocational education, assess the male and female attitudes towards vocational education, to assess how the institutional factors influence male and female participation in vocational education and to analyse the differences in participation of male and female students in vocational education and training. The study used the descriptive cross-sectional survey design. The study was carried out in selected vocational institutions in Luweero District, Uganda. Random sampling was used for student respondents, purposive sampling for the Ministry of Education officials, heads of institutions and vocational teachers. Two sets of semi-structured questionnaires with open and close ended questions were used. Qualitative data was analysed through content analysis whereas quantitative data was analysed using frequency tables and percents at the univariate level while the Students T-test was used at the bivariate level and the statistics were computed with the help of the statistical packages for social scientists (SPSS). From the findings this study found that; the social-cultural environment still has an influence on the attitude of the students, the male and female students’ attitude towards vocational education is positive; there are no significant differences in attitudes between male and female students towards vocational education. Many vocational institutions lack facilities in their environment needed for effective vocational teaching and learning. There was a lack of physical energy needed in some courses which limits the female students from enrolling on such courses. Other limiting factors include; confidence, commitment and encouragement that incline the female students to act in certain ways towards vocational education. The study recommends that the government through the Ministry of Education and Sports together with the Ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development should encourage vocational institutions to work closely with the employers, lay strategies for them to collaborate to improve the attitude of girls and boys towards vocational courses. More funding should go to vocational institutions to improve facilities, build more vocational institutions, lay strategies such as mentoring programmes to attract more girls to vocational fields, awarding scholarships and exchange programmes with foreign countries.