Gender differences in the structure of interests

Jo-Ida C Hansen, Rose C. Collins, Jane L. Swanson, Nadya A. Fouad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Multidimensional scaling (MDS) analysis was used to analyze the structure of interests of the Women- and Men-in-General samples used in the revision of the 1985 Strong Interest Inventory (Hansen and Campbell, 1985). In the present study, the intercorrelation matrices of the Strong Interest Inventory General Occupational Themes, for the 1985 Women-in-General and Men-in-General Reference Samples, were separately submitted to MDS. Results from earlier analyses that found sex differences in the structure of interests (Feldman and Meir, 1976; Rounds, Davison, and Dawis, 1979; Utz and Korben, 1976) may have been confounded because matched-interest samples were not used. Subjects for the Women-in-General and Men-in-General samples used in this study were selected with the specific intention of matching the interests of females and males by choosing participants who were matched on occupational title. The obtained two-dimensional solutions demonstrated a gender difference in the underlying structure of interests for these reference groups. Possible explanations and implications of these results are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)200-211
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1993


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