Sex Roles [sers] pp673-sers-455292 November 8, 2002 16:50 Style ﬁle version June 3rd, 2002
Sex Roles, Vol. 47, Nos. 5/6, August 2002 (
Gender-Role Identity, Attitudes Toward Marriage,
and Gender-Segregated School Backgrounds
and Yoko Sugihara
The purpose of this study was twofold: (1) to investigate the relationship between gender-
role identity and attitudes toward marriage by comparing Bem’s gender schema theory
and Spence’s multifactorial model of gender identity; (2) to examine the effects of gender-
segregated school backgrounds on gender-role identity and attitudes toward marriage. A total
of 524 male and 696 female Japanese college students completed the Japanese version of
the Bem Sex Role Inventory and a series of questions regarding attitudes toward marriage.
Overall results were more supportive of Spence’s multifactorial model. The effect of school
background was found only in women; women without any coeducational school background
had relatively strong masculinity and desired to marry at an older age, but tended to have a
conservative opinion about men taking nontraditional roles.
KEY WORDS: gender-role identity; attitudes toward marriage; school background.
Perry and Bussey (1984) deﬁned gender-role de-
velopment as “the process whereby children come to
acquire the behaviors, attitudes, interests, emotional
reactions, and motives that are culturally deﬁned
as appropriate for members of their sex” (p. 262).
This deﬁnition suggests that gender roles include
behavioral, attitudinal, and personality aspects. It
also assumes that these gender aspects are closely
related to each other because they are expected
to be consistent. Culturally, Japan has strong tradi-
tional gender stereotypes compared to other coun-
tries (Inoue, 1992; Williams & Best, 1990). This fact
suggests that gender-related phenomena in Japan
should be consistent. The primary purpose of the
present study is to examine the interrelatedness of
gender phenomena by focusing on gender-role iden-
Akita University, Akita, Japan.
Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, Los Angeles.
To whom correspondence should be addressed at Department of
Education and Human Studies, 1-1 Tegata-Gakuenmanchi, Akita
010-8502, Japan; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
tity and attitudes toward marriage in Japanese college
The secondary purpose of our study was to ex-
plore environmental inﬂuences on gender-role iden-
tity and attitudes toward marriage in college students.
Theories of gender-role development emphasize the
importance of environmental inﬂuences on gender-
role development. Although parental inﬂuences on
gender-role development have been studied well
(Fagot & Leinbach, 1989; Haigler, Day, & Marshall,
1995; Jackson, Ialongo, & Stollack, 1986; Lombardo
& Kemper, 1992; Orlofsky, 1979), the inﬂuences of
school environment on gender role development do
not seem to have been investigated often. School
is an important place where socialization of chil-
dren takes place. In adolescence, boys and girls
spend a large amount of time in schools where
the gender-egalitarian principle and sexism coex-
ist (Kimura, 1999). Therefore, school inﬂuences on
gender-role development cannot be ignored. In the
present study, we examined whether school back-
grounds (coeducational or gender-segregated junior
high and/or high schools) had any effect on the college
students’ gender-role identity and attitudes toward
2002 Plenum Publishing Corporation