Gender analysis of Croatian school curriculum


Engendered Curriculum National Analysis- CROATIA
Prepared by: Mary Ann Rukavina Cipetić, GTF Initiative for Sustainable Growth, Gender Expert – together with:
External Experts engaged (names) and fields for curricular analysis / Subjects Covered:

Elementary School

  1. 1. – 4. Grade: (doc. dr. sc. Marina Gabelica Teachers College – Zagreb University): all mandatory subjects
  2. 5. – 8. Grade: Marina Zlatarić, prof. (Elementary School- Bartol Kašić): Croatian Language

High School

  1. Croatian Language: Ana Đordić, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  2. Mathematics: Berislav Šega, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  3. English: Dragana Dejanović, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  4. History: Frane Marić, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  5. Geography: Ines Šimac, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  6. Physics: Ivana Božičković, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  7. Philosophy: Iva Rogulja Praštalo, prof.: (XIII Gymnasium)
  8. Physical Education: Antonijo Perić, : (XII Gymnasium)


In April 2017, Gender Expert prepared a terms of reference and initial and follow-up meetings with potential experts in order to ascertain their interest and capacity for undertaking the research. In May the experts were identified and consulted with gender expert on gender mainstreaming in education. After which in June all 10 experts were contracted to finalize and present their analysis and recommendations.
Of the 10 experts, 9 are currently engaged as professors/teachers in elementary or high school and are teaching the subjects they analyzed in 2 different high schools and one elementary school. One expert used to teach in elementary school, and now is a professor at the teachers college, herself having translated textbooks, and authored several handbooks for methods of teaching Croatian Language and literature as well as digital textbooks.

Croatian Language (1-4)

Summary of Findings:
Croatian Language covers four basic parts – language, literature, use of language and media culture. The only theme/content related to a gender perspective in the Croatian Curriculum – plan and program, is in 4th grade, related to gender of nouns (male, female, neutral). At the same time one can notice omissions regarding gender representation in desription of subjects; for example (pupil, reader, librarian – without their female equivalents[1]. Likewise in 3rd grade a key concept in media culture- Children’s film, uses the terminology „actor“ – (glumac) in its male form not mentioning its female form (glumica) as a possibility for use. Analysis of individual school textbooks would surely provide a broader picture of gender perspectives, in particular gender stereotyping particularly present in literary texts. Another analysis – that of the lists of required reading (Croatian: Lektira) and films which pupils would read or watch throughout the school year.


Use of Language / Expression of Language

  • Given that the Croatian language has gender distinctions, it is recommended to use both genders actively and encourage pupils to do so from first grade onwards.
  • When pupils learn about personal Names, male and female, – consider why are some names for females, others for males, origins of their name, what would be the female version of a boy’s name and vice versa.
  • Show and tell during class on professions, emphasizing different professions (male and female forms of the name of profession) explaining parent’s profession, and how they made their professional choice.
  • And having persons with non-stereotypical professional choices come in to class to present their professions.

Literature and Media Culture

  • Careful selection of texts/films: avoiding texts which perpetuate gender roles, selecting texts/films which speak for gender equality
  • Selection of texts and film with strong female protagonists
  • Selection of texts /films with both male and female authors
  • Getting to know the biographies of male and female authors (for later grades)
  • Applying positive literary experiences to classroom experiences – making reference to a positive literary character (male) when referring to a female pupil and vice versa.

Useful Links – Internet

Zrinka Breglec, Gender, Sex, and Women in Croatian Language – Rod, spol i žena u hrvatskome jeziku. Zagreb:Faculty of Philosophy – University of Zagreb link here
Arma an Gökçearslan: The effect of cartoon movies on children’s gender development: link here
Stacy L. Smith, Crystal Allene Cook: Gender Stereotypes: An Analysis of Popular Films and TV: link here
Croatian Center for Children’s Books. link here
Croatian Association for Children Book Researchers
Croatian Association Of Film Directors: link here

Nature and Society (1-4)

Nature and Society subject in elementary school 1-4 grades covers natural and social science (chemistry, physics, biology, geography, history, Croatian language etc.). Its purpose is to make pupils aware of the interconnected nature of factors in human surroundings – in their natural and social surroundings. Analysis of the Croatian Curriculum – plan and program shows that The only theme/content directly related to a gender perspective is the theme „Family Roles“, with key concepts „immediate family“ and „extended family“ and learning outcomes: differentiating between immediate and extended family, ability to name members of the immediate family (father, mother, children) and extended family (parents, children, grandparents). In addition to this theme related to learning and naming different family members and their relations between each other, in 2nd grade the theme “Child” is covered with key concepts “girl” and “boy” and learning outcomes: noticing physical differences and similarities between boys and girls. In the Curriculum only physical aspects are considered between sexes.


Given that Nature and Society is a school subject in which, inter alia, the complexity and diversity of  the hiuman community is taught, there are ertainly themes which could be enriched with pozitive examples and learning about gender perspectives.

  1. grade . Theme: Life and work at School
  2. grade. Theme: People’s professions

Both are linked to career choice and offer opportunities to discuss choices in a non-discriminatory manner, emphasizing positive examples.

  1. grade. Theme: Life in the Family

3. grade. Theme: Past, Present, Future

Both are linked to gender roles (in the family) and how they have changed over time

    1. grade .Theme: Child
    2. grade. Theme: Health

4. grade. Theme: My Body

Include themes of differences similiraties between boys and girls which can be discussed and compared. Discriminatory stances can be addressed

4. grade. Theme: Human

Involves rights of children, human rights and community roles, differences between cutures in this regard as well as gender dimension can be integrated

1-4 grades .Themes: Culture, local Cultural Historical Excursions etc.

Offer opportunities for researching important people, facts including prominent women.

Useful Links – Internet

Ankica Valenta: Croatian Women Cientists who followed Eistein Theory of Relativity link here
UNESCO research– Women in science link here /link here
Smithsonian on-line magazine: Ten Historic Female Scientists You Should Know link here
National Scholarship Program for Women in Science link here
Film: Throw like a girl link here


Mathematics (1-4)

Mathematics for 1-4. Grade is a key subject which aims to develop cognitive, special, logical and other skills and competences needed in everyday life. Curricular analysis shows that there is not a singular element which deals with gender as such. (Note that analysis of textbooks would provide a more detailed and quality view of this matter)


Given that mathematics (as other natural science) is considered a „male profession“ it would be very important  to present male and female on an equal basis renowned and  valued mathematicians who have advanced this and other natural sciences.

Useful Links – Internet

Zdenka Pavić: Žene u matematici. : Hrvatski matematički elektronski časopis

link here / link here

Visual Culture / Art (1-4)

Visual Culture /Art (1-4) in elementary school is based on the process of exploratory learning and creation which strongly impacts psycho-motoric, intellectual, esthetic, and emotional development of the child. The “visual language” is very important, yet is given only a small portion of the curriculum, one hour per week. Analysis of the Curriculum plan and program, showed not a single theme related to gender perspectives. Analysis of textbooks would likely provide more insight. Analysis of the list of recommended artwork, for which each grade has titles of approximately, 20 pieces of art – all were created by male artists. In other words, not a single female artists’ work was recommended and represented.


  • While it is clear that art should be chosen by criteria of quality and esthetic value, it would be useful to teach pupils about female artists who have made impressive work throughout history,
  • Given that women weren’t allowed to be artists for many centuries, it would be important to inform pupils of modern female artists and discuss freedom of expression – then and now!
  • In 4th grade: theme „Color – Contrast and dominating colors, shapes and sizes,“  various tasks are given to analyze visual messages – which is important for development of media literacy and in correlation with Croatian Language. Such analysis could involve male/female in media, as a prelude to later grades in which subjects should be analyzed in more detail.

Useful Links – Internet

Collection „ Croatian artists born in the 19th Century“ Zbirka “Hrvatske slikarice rođene u 19. st.” link here
National Museum of women in the arts

Musical Culture (1-4)

Musical Culture is made of musical areas: singing, playing instruments, listening to music, and musical creativity. As it is an artistic area of great psychological and cultural-esthetic value, whose content can be correlated to other subjects, especially Croatian Language, Visual Culture/Art, and Physical Education.
Analysis shows that very few female authors are included, notably authors of children’s songs, while the list of suggested compositions includes not a single female composer.


  • In the 4th Grade there are opportunities for themes with a gender perspective: Folklore music of Podravina and Posavina Regions, (typified by group singing – especially female singing); Croatian Zagorje and Međimurje Regions (solo female voice, female group singing and male group singing; Banovina and Lika Regions (female singing a capella); Dalmatian Islands and Coast, Dubrovnik (a capella singing by male and female groups)
  • Add to the list of composers, works by quality female composers/authors.


Foreign Language (1-4) (English, German, French, Italian)

According to the Curriculum Plan and Program, 4 foreign languages (English, German, French, and Italian) are foreseen to be taught as the first foreign language from grades 1-4. The majority of content is directed towards incremental overcoming of each language, reception of hearing, reproduction, speech, articulation, etc.
All of the abovementioned languages follow themes which are complementary to themes from Croatian Language and Nature and Society (for example: introducing oneself and one’s friends, naming family members, etc. In the 4th grade a stereotype can be noticed in the illustrative example.
Theme: My family and friends – presenting members of immediate and extended family, – with description of physical and character qualities of members of family and friends, their professions, and interests. Example: „This is my dad/mum. He’s kind. She’s pretty.
This inappropriate example in which the man is represented by character traits, while the woman is illutrated by her physical characteristics – was somewhat overcome by the continuation „He’s a vet/sailor. /She’s a lawyer/pilot/teacher...“  We believe such a failure should not exist in official documents.


  • Language: given that the majority of pupils who are attending foreign language class have the mother tongue Croatian, a comparison could be made with the forms of gender which are used (are these forms in use in the foreign language; moja / moj ; his / hers / meine / mein etc.)
  • Language expression: As mentioned in analysis of Croatian Language: pupils could be asked to prepare an oral presentation on the professions of their parents, or to investigate male and female artists, those in professional sports, from different countries.
  • Considering that during teaching of foreign languages various films and picturebooks are in use (which are not determined by the Program), attention should be paid to ensure their selection is of quality, that it has content which represents equally both male and female protagonists, and that equally introduces works by male and female authors.

Croatian Language (5-8)

Summary of Findings:

Croatian Language in the higher levels of primary school covers five basic parts – language, literature, reading, use of language (oral and written) and media culture. As a mandatory subject it provides a wealth of opportunities to discuss gender and gender roles.


  • Careful selection of texts/films: avoiding texts which perpetuate gender roles, selecting texts/films which speak for gender equality
  • Selection of important messages in required reading texts – related to human rights, equality, gender roles, men as caregivers, women as scientists,  the right to select one’s own profession, etc.
  • Discussion on the authors themselves, in particular female authors, example: Marija Jurić Zagorka – feminist writer late 19th /early 20th century
  • In media culture- discussion on the beginnings of theater, in which men played all the roles as women weren’t allowed. Demonstrating films as projects where women and men have jointly worked to produce them -. Example: Baltazar animated film with male and female animators.
  • Addition of project and workshop style for integrated learning and encouraging critical thinking, in-depth learning, better getting to know each other through working together which is missing in this age of social media and shallow acquaintance.




High School


Croatian Language 9-12

Summary of Findings:

Croatian Language is mandatory for all 4 years. Teaching methods of male and female students in literature involves reading, listening, speaking, writing, showing, observing, experiencing, noticing, imagining, considering, comparing, systematizing, concluding, associating and rating. Methods in learning language and expressing language are the following: oral presentation (analytic and synthetic), discussion, reading, dictating, composing, transcribing, correcting, noting, and reforming. Education methods of Croatian language are auditory, visual and written/text. The art of organizing Croatian Language involves extraordinary organization, preciseness, exactness, in order to transfer all mandatory content. It should be noted that there is a lack of time allocated to this subject in order to achieve all expectations. In a quality manner.
Female authors who are mandatory include Sappho, Ana Katarina Zrinski and Vesna Parun, therefore very few opporunities exiost in the official program for demonstrating female author’s accomplishments in detail.


  • Marija Jurić Zagorka, as a remarkable author and journalist who fought for women’s rights, albeit is not on the mandatory list of literature, but should be somehow included for her importance to women’s rights. Dragojla Jarnević, important to the Croatian Cultural „Rebirth“ in the mid 19th century, as well as Ivana Brlić Mažuranić- known as Croatian Tolkein or Andersen for her works of fantasy and children’s stories.
  • Many works of literature can and should be analyzed from a gender perspective

With specific characters, female and male, who offer much food for thought regarding gender stereotypes, violence against women, family roles, etc.

  • In expression of language: gender and sex can be approached by using examples of words such as „curetak“ which is male in gender but refers to a girl(female) and others.
  • Likewise in language expression, students can be given assignments to elaborate and defend a position on gender equality in modern society in written form, or to make an oral presentation on Gender Equality, Suffragettes, or other theme which is current from a gender perspective.
  • There are specific gender related themes which can be associated with each mandatory reading assignment, either in wruitten form as a question or in group discussions and presentations.


Useful Links – Internet

  1. Education Program for Gymnasium (High School) link here
  2. National Framework Curriculum, link here, posjet: 6. lipnja 2017.
  3. Rosandić, Dragutin, 2005, Methods of literary education Metodika književnog odgoja, Zagreb: Školska knjiga
  4. Lexicon of Croatian Writers Leksikon hrvatskih pisaca, 2000, ur. Fališevac, D., Nemec, K. i Novaković, D., Zagreb: Školska knjiga
  5. Breglec, Kristina, „ Gender, Sex and Women in Croatian Language“ – „Rod, spol i žena u hrvatskom jeziku“ in: Jat – časopis studenata kroatistike, Vol. 1, No. 2, 2015., link here,
  6. Dunja Bonacci-Skenderović, Female Traficking for sexual abuse Trgovanje ženama u svrhu seksualnog iskorištavanja, webpage of „Women’s room- center for sexual rights “ Ženske sobe – Centra za seksualna prava, link here,


Mathematics 9-12

Summary of Findings:

Mathematics is a mandatory subject for all 4 years of high school. Challenges in teaching are due to age of textbooks and available technology. Because of specificity of Mathematics, introducing a gender perspective is limited to: citing authors, use of female names and female gender in language of examples, as well as the choice of authors itself. A quick review of the accepted textbooks for gymnasiums in Croatia shows a predominance of female authors (21:19). In this manner a very important message is given to combat stereotypes demonstrating that women can be successful mathematicians.



  • Maintain / improve equal representation of women authors amongst approved for use textbooks
  • Equal use of male and female names in examples; avoiding gender stereotypes; Use of both gender forms of language
  • Importance of citing female authors, especially modern female mathematicians; also important to mention successful women in economic profession who have a mathematics background (role models)
  • Informing students about the fact that female professors are proportionately less the higher up the academic ladder (motivate for overcoming this barrier)
  • Using references to famous historic women mathematicians: such as Teano (5th century B.C), Sofija Vasiljevna Kovalevska (1850.-1891.), Hipatija (370.-415.), Maria Gaetana Agnesi (1718.-1799.), Marie Sophie Germain (1776.-1831.), Augusta Ada Byron (1815.-1852.)

Useful Links – Internet

  1. Gender differences in education outcomes. link here
  2. math e | Croatian Mathematics online magazine link here


Geography 9-12

Summary of Findings:

Geography is an interdisciplinary mandatory subject for high school which combines natural and social sciences. Geography encourages male and female students to develop competences and skills for greater spatial intelligence. Within this subject there is a necessity for interpersonal cooperation, and solidarity with the aim of getting acquainted with and expressing closeness to one’s homeland, environment and the world.


  • Mention important women astronauts, along with men, when the unit on Earth in the solar system and universe.
  • Within geological characteristics of Earth, refering to evolution of life, there is a need to emphasize the vital role of women, her work and her skills, as key to the fate of the human race. In prehistoric times, women living very briefly and working hard to gather food and cook, raise children, make clothing, adornments, etc..
  • Example of Lucy, female 3.18 million year old fossils found in Ethiopia.
  • Making mention of famous female geophysicists and seizmologists along with the already mentioned Mohorovičić i B. Gutenberg.
  • When discussing development of reliefs, in which the highest mountain chain is referred to, the first woman alpinist can be mentioned – Junko Tabei from Japan, but also Croatian Alpinist women sisters, Darija and Iris Bostjančić who were the first Croatian women to climb Everest.
  • In the Unit on population (2nd year) there is an opening to discuss „male“ and „female“ professions and gender inequalities in oprder to build mutual respect and reduce stereotypes. This Unit opens potential for discussing parts of the world where women aren’t allowed to vote, and where women can be brutally punished for not fulfilling gender norms. Example – Malale Yousufzai, Pakistani aktivist and student who won the Novel Peace Prize in 2014. Importance of education and need for women’s voices to (also) be heard throughout the world.
  • In 3rd year High school, geography tackles causes and effects of interconnection of the global economy, and inequalities which arise between countries. Here women’s socio-economic position historically can be discussed as well as currently. Leading female figures in politics and the economy can be considered as role models of people who changed the world for the better.
  • In 4th year of high school, physical-geographic specificiteies of R. Croatia are examined, which opens possibilities for research projects which examine differences between regions regarding exposure to dioscrimination and respect for gender equality.
  • Competences gained include expressing freely one’s views, awareness of gender stereotypes, and equal representation for women and men in  private and public life.


Useful Links – Internet / Literature


Brazda, M. (1985.): Terenski rad i ekskurzije u nastavi geografije. Školska knjiga. Zagreb.
Kamenov, Ž; Galić, B.:Rodna ravnopravnost i diskriminacija u Hrvatskoj : istraživanje : ‘‘Percepcija, iskustva i stavovi o rodnoj diskriminaciji u Republici Hrvatskoj’’; 2009. Odsjek za psihologiju Filozofskog fakulteta Sveučilišta u Zagrebu; link here
Matas, M., (1996.): Metodika nastave geografije, Hrvatsko geografsko društvo, Zagreb
Mirković, M., Primjena računalnih igara u obrazovanju. link here
Nadrljanski, Đ., (2013.) Digitalni mediji u here
Felicia, P., (2009.). Digitalne igre u školama. Priručnik za učitelje. Belgija, European Schoolnet link here
Vuk, R., (2009.): Strategije učenja i poučavanja, Geografski horizont 55 (1), HGD, Zagreb, 51-58.


English 9-12

Summary of Findings:

English Language is a mandatory subject for high school gymnasium. It is taught 105 hours / academic year for grades 9-11, and 90 hours in grade 12.  According to the National Curriculum, English language purpose for teaching and learning is to „develop communication and intercultural competences,“ as well as the full development of the individual and and his/her basic competences. The competences a student should master with English language are: ability to understand what is heard and read, interpreting other’s and one’s own emotions, information, ideas, etc. Students should be able to handle such situations and better discover the workld around him/her.  Learning a foreign language encourages creativity and critical thinking and conquering English language contributes to positive self-perception, encourages tolerance between cultures, and provides an important condition fofr life-long-learning, especially via the internet. English language is taught in all elementary and high schools, although number of hours /years taught depends on the grade and  type of program / profession. During all years there are several themes discussed which have a gender dimension, which can be presented in such a manner as to spark discussion and reflection.


  • There are lessons in which people from different cultures present their (typical) families. Here lies an opportunity to discuss women’s / men’s roles in the family in Croatia.
  • Also there is an opportunity to discuss society’s influence on these roles and choice of professions. In later chapters finances are discussed including wages for various occupations, which provides an opportunity to discuss equal pay and gender wage gap.
  • In other circumstances historic figure are presented which can brig up the thjeme of women’s contribution to history.


Useful Links – Internet / Literature

  1. Nacionalni kurikulum nastavnoga predmeta Engleski jezik link here
  1. Guidelines: Gender fair curriculum development (2010) link here



Physics 9-12

Summary of Findings:

Physics is a mandatory subject in high school /gymnasium 1-4 years which along with chemistry and biology belongs to the group of natural sciences. Physics is taught 2 hours per week, totaling 70 hours per year. Methods of teaching include oral presentation, discussion, demonstration, writing and drawing, reading and work with texts, and practical work.


  • Include important women physicists in chapters related to their discoveries and research. Example Emilie du Chatelet , Mileva Marić – 1st  wife of Albert Einstein, etc.
  • Recommend Hidden Figures(2016) American biographical drama film directed by Theodore Melfi for students to watch, challenging gender and racial stereotypes.

Useful Links – Internet / Literature

  1. Alić, Marsela. Emilie du Chatelet – žena, majka, znanstvenica. Zagreb. link here
  2. Rudež, Tanja. Ljubavna pisma otkrivaju: Moguće da potomak Alberta Einsteina živi negdje u ovim krajevima. Zagreb. link here
  3. Derk, Denis. Je li Albert Einstein bio vrijedan Milevine žrtve. Zagreb. link here
  4. Kalogjera, Ivanka. Znanost je i dalje seksistička grana, ali žene poput Fabiole Gianotti polako brišu granice. Zagreb. link here
  5. link here



History 9-12

Summary of Findings:

History is a mandatory subject for high school. Depending on the type of high school, that is, trade school or gymnasium, the number of hours varies per year. In trade schools and three year programs, (Croatian) history is taught in the first year a total of 70 hours. In hospitality high schools, history is taught 1st and 2nd years for 70 hours per year, including Croatian and World history. In gymnasium, history is obligatory all 4 years with a predominance of national history (2-4th years). The first 3 years have 70 hours while the 4th year has 96 hours. Even though history teaching should be conducive to inclusion of a gender perspective, the program is out of date (1995), and mostly is concerned with political history and economic history, followed in third place by society and changes throughout a certain era.


  • Throughout history the power and merit of women in different fields of interest was manifested through men – As rulers through husbands or sons heirs to the throne or as scientists through their husbands or as writers through pseudonyms.
  • This project can contribute to diagnosing such tendencies and make corrections through:
  • Role playing of men and women through various historic ages (including prehistoric)
  • Women exceptions to the rule: from ancient times onwards several important examples.

Useful Links – Internet / Literature

link here / link here /  link here / link here


Philosophy 9-12

Summary of Findings:

The goal of the subject of philosophy which takes place in the fourth year of high school education in the framework of social-humanistic area (sociology, logic, religious study, ethics, nature and society, history, and geography) and the module of citizenship education, production and consumers, professional guidance and lifelong learning, citizenship and entrepreneurship, and applied psychology (all integrated into existing subjects, as explained in the national program is to introduce students to a philosophical way of thinking and to develop their ability to critically examine the world around them. In order to accomplish this students have to adopt basic philosophical terminology, get introduced to development of philosophical thought throughout history, and to get closer to the spirit of our time through a presentation of modern philosophical thought and basic problems of modern philosophy. Therefore three possible models of approach to teaching the curriculum exist, the choice amongst which is left to the teacher.

  1. Model: Historical /problem approach – based on an overview of history of philosophy and focus on introduction to philosophy and overview of modern philosophy.
  2. Model: thematic approach – based on basic themes of modern philosophy in order to find answers to questions on the origins of the world, confirming knowledge and science, and the meaning of human existence.

III. Model:  problem approach – based on active work of students on philosophy texts in order to make them a (relatively) independent factor in class.



  • Language: Use of gender neutral (in plural) or both male and female forms.
  • Introduce important women authors/philosophers, who are notably missing from the lists of philosophers 22:1 (exception Hanna Arendt), while maintaining criteria of relevance.

Useful Links – Internet / Literature

Arendt, Hannah. 2002. Eichmann u Jeruzalemu : izvještaj o banalnosti zla. Politička kultura. Zagreb
Bordo, Susan 1993. „Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture, and the Body“ U: The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticsm. Ur. Vincent B. Leitch. 2001. New York & London: W. W. Northon & Company: 2362. – 2376.
Butler, Judith. 2000. Nevolje s rodom : feminizam i subverzija identiteta. Ženska infoteka. Zagreb.
Čačinović, Nadežda (ur.). 2006. Žene i filozofija. Centar za ženske studije. Zagreb.
De Beauvoir, Simone. 2016. Drugi spol. Naklada Ljevak. Zagreb
Hooks, Belle. 2004. Feminizam je za sve. Centar za ženske studije. 2004.
Kašić, Biljana; Marijan, Janja; Pešut, Jasminka. 2005. Vodič prema politici rodne jednakosti. Centar za ženske studije. Zagreb
Kristeva, Julia. 1989.  Moći užasa. Ogled o zazornosti. Naprijed. Zagreb.
Lennon, Kathleen . 2010. “Feminist Perspectives on the Body” U: The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Internet. 5. lipnja 2017. link here
Mill, John Stuart. 2000. Podređenost žena. Jesenski i Turk i HSD. Zagreb.
Pateman, Carole. 2000. Spolni ugovor. Ženska infoteka, Zagreb.
Šinko, Marjeta (ur.). 2015. Žene i politika: feministička politička znanost. Centar za ženske studije i Fakultet političkih znanosti Sveučilišta u Zagrebu. Zagreb.
link here / link here / link here



Physical and Health Education 9-12

Summary of Findings:

The subject of physical and health education (PHE) is mandatory in the Croatian School system from the first grade elementary school to the second year of university. In high school, PHE is taught two hours/week for 35 weeks, in accordance with material conditions existing in each school. Due to differences/specificities of female organism and the specific rules of each sport, teaching females and males does not have to be the same. Schools retain the right to autonomy in organizing education especially for boys and especially for girls or in accordance with their material/technical and staffing conditions. The greatest issue is the fact that there is no framework on the national level. For this reason teachers of PHE, experts in human kinetics, are forced to investigate independently and adapt their programs to social circumstances. The last official document was issued in 1992.

The purpose of the subject is to satisfy the bio-psycho-social needs of humans to be in motion and to develop a conscious of independent care for and advancement of health. Teachers of PHE select the motor structures which will have the optimum effect on development of pupils/students in regard to the defined goal. Teaching of PHE should progress through the 4 years so that motoric knowledge is built upon earlier achievements starting with analytic methods and progressing to synthetic. PHE is further taught in non-mandatory and extra-curricular programs, through various sports.



  • Breaking stereotypes in order to put women in equal position to men such as steretypical „male“ and „female“ sports.
  • Encourage tolerance and respect for fellow players regardless of sex.
  • Different interpretation of results given differences between male and female success in PHE, given that it is demonstrated that adolescents of both sexes are interested in PHE.
  • Modifying sports/games- through team activity with modifications making possible that each player has similar significance. Including:
  • Modified Volleyball, Basketball, Football, relay race, dodgeball, etc.
  • Selection of teams can be highly stressful so it is important to avoid discrimination on any basis (including gender) by selecting neutral criteria for teams.
  • Content selection isi mportant from a gender aspect, that is balanced content given prevalence of interest by males for sport games and females for gymnastic and dance activity.
  • Work in groups for new educational themes. Role playing to demonstrate privelege and inequality. Communication is crucial.


Useful Links – Internet / Literature

  1. link here
  2. link here
  3. Csikszentmihaliy, Mihaly (2000). Beyond boredom and anxiety. San Francisco. Jossey-Bass Publishers
  4. link here


[1] Namely Croatian language foresees male and female forms of those words, e.g. učenik (m), učenica (f), čitatelj (m) Čitateljica (f) etc.  Use of both forms , male and female is a requirement under the Law on Gender Equality, not always implemented in practice

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