Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Bonnie J. Perry

Second Advisor

Lynda I. Allen

Third Advisor

Kelly S. Brown

Scholarship Domain(s)

Scholarship of Discovery


This study was motivated by the researcher’s interest in the gender disparity occurring in U.S. business schools. Female representation in business schools reached a highpoint in 2002-03 with women earning 50.6% of business degrees; however, by 2013-14 women were earning less than half, 47.4%, of business degrees. Moreover, female representation in business schools was not proportional to their representation in the overall university with females earning 57.1% of all bachelor’s degrees. The purpose of the current study was to investigate differences in the learning styles and learning experiences between male and female traditional undergraduate business students to recommend strategies for business schools that address the unique learning needs of female students. The research included input from junior and senior business students from two small, private Midwestern universities. The researcher gathered quantitative and qualitative input from 176 students using a survey instrument with closed and open-ended questions and qualitative input from 22 students using four gender-specific focus groups. The findings of the research revealed that there were no significant differences between the learning styles of male and female students; however, there was a significant difference between male and female student’s group experiences and attitudes toward male professors vs. female professors. The findings of this study will provide business school leadership with valuable information for recruiting and retaining female college students by recommending ways to create more appealing learning environments for women.


Ed.D. dissertation completed in 2017 for Olivet Nazarene University.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License