The Effect of Gender on the Relationship between Critical Thinking and Pattern Recognition: Students’ Perspectives


  • Ling Meng Kay, Daniel Asia e University
  • Loh Sau Cheong University of Malaya



qualitative study, interviews, gender, critical thinking, pattern recognition


In this qualitative study, individual interviews were conducted on 11 private school students to seek their opinions about the effect of gender on the relationship between critical thinking and cognitive pattern recognition. The participants, age 16 to 19 inclusive with six males and five females, were students recruited from three private schools in Singapore. All the interviewees have enrolled in the General Certificate of Education (GCE) 'O' level preparatory courses. The interview transcripts were analyzed using Qualitative Data Analysis (QDA) Miner software. The majority (64%) of the interviewees agreed that gender influence the relationship between critical thinking and pattern recognition. Two primary themes were identified that affect the effect of gender: the internal character traits of a person and society's influences. Two recommendations were to examine the impact of various internal character traits in more detail and to include interviews from school teachers and administrators to obtain more professional insights.

Author Biographies

Ling Meng Kay, Daniel, Asia e University

Dr Ling received his Bachelor degree in Electrical Engineering, a Masters in Education from the United States and Ph.D from Asia e University, Malaysia. He is currently an associate lecturer with MDIS College in Singapore, teaching Mathematics and Physics to the GCE ‘O’ and ‘A’ level students. Dr Ling’s research interests include cognitive education, gender effects on relationships between cognitive abilities, cognitive pattern recognition and critical thinking skills, mathematics and science education.

Loh Sau Cheong, University of Malaya

Professor Dr. Loh Sau Cheong received her Bachelor degree in Special Education (learning disabilities); and both Masters and Ph.D in Educational Psychology. Currently, she is a Full Professor and Head of Department for the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling, Faculty of Education, University of Malaya. Prof. Loh’s research interests include teacher self-efficacy, student self-concept, attribution retraining, attention development, motivation in learning, individualized education plan, assistive technology, and transitional plan for individuals with special needs.


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How to Cite

Ling, M. K. D., & Loh, S. C. (2021). The Effect of Gender on the Relationship between Critical Thinking and Pattern Recognition: Students’ Perspectives. Journal of Education and Educational Development, 8(2).