Introduction to GBA Plus

Assumptions: A closer look

Can you think of other professions that are dominated by either men or women? What is it about these professions that make them more dominated by men or women? What assumptions about gender roles and responsibilities have influenced the gender makeup of these professions, and what is the impact?

Here are some examples for your consideration


  • Men still dominate the IT world, while women are the predominant gender in nursing and elementary school teaching.
  • Portraying women as responsible for young children is a gender norm that has contributed to high numbers of women becoming elementary school teachers.
  • Job requirements may contain hidden biases and these may be systemic. This is an especially high risk when the requirements are set by those who are currently in the job (e.g. specialized policing unit, early childhood educators).
  • Affinity (“like me”) bias leads us to favour people who are like us. This can lead to unconscious favouritism in the workplace, where we hire people who are most like us.