Can a female teacher be a role model for a male student?

TLDR: Yes (teacher <= teaches; model <= stands out as an inspiration source)

The romanced version:

Didn't your mother teach you anything? :) *

Can Marie Curie be an influence on a male physicist?

Can Amelia Earhart inspire men to fly?

Can Joan of Arc mean something to a freedom fighter?

Can Mother Theresa inspire a monk?

Can Margaret Thatcher say something to a male politician?

Don't you fear that Oprah may read your question?

I am so sorry that I left out so many women. I know I cannot ever make up for it.

You obviously want someone to point you toward some good literature. Here's a primer on the web:

Important Women Through History

Women who changed the world |

Top 100 Famous Women |

Famous Women

Top 100 Women in History (According to Web Searches)

* please forgive my bad joke in case you had the tragic misfortune to loose your mother too soon (not that any other time is not too soon).


Of course! Unless the ‘role' you're modeling to him is somehow gender-specific.

Even then, if he were to see you as a role model, it may be of a transferred quality. So, even if what he were to admire about you and deem worthy of emulation were something gender-specific, he might be able to approach that ideal in an adapted fashion applicable to his own gender.

Role models are models for our behavior, we find certain traits in them worthy of emulation, that does not necessitate that we emulate every one of their behaviors or traits - we do not have to want to be our role model, we just want to be like them in some selected aspects.


Yes. Gender doesn't mean that you cannot be a role model for a young mind. For example, my eighth grade teacher was female, and she was one of the best teachers I've ever had, because she taught me the most important lesson of all- be who you are, and don't listen to the people who judge you (within reason of course, if I decide I'm a dog or something, I should listen and reform my ways)


Ruth P. Yaffe, Professor of Chemistry at San José State University was a role model to generations of men and women alike.

It was an honor to have had her both as a teacher and as my academic advisor. She opened a lot of doors for me and many others, and showed by example how to conduct ourselves as professionals.


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