The purpose of this study was to analyze the impact of a context-based teaching approach (STS) versus a more traditional textbook approach on the attitudes and achievement of community college chemistry students. In studying attitudes toward chemistry within this study, I used a 30-item Likert scale in order to study the importance of chemistry in students' lives, the importance of chemistry, the difficulty of chemistry, interest in chemistry, and the usefulness of chemistry for their future career. Though the STS approach students had higher attitude post scores, there was no significant difference between the STS and textbook students' attitude post scores. It was noted that females had higher postattitude scores in the STS group, while males had higher postattitude scores in the textbook group. With regard to postachievement, I noted that males had higher scores in both groups. A correlation existed between postattitude and postachievement in the STS classroom. In summary, while an association between attitude and achievement was found in the STS classroom, teaching approach or sex was not found to influence attitudes, while sex was also not found to influence achievement. These results, overall, suggest that attitudes are not expected to change on the basis of either teaching approach or gender, and that techniques other than changing the teaching approach would need to be used in order to improve the attitudes of students. Qualitative analysis of an online discussion activity on Energy revealed that STS students were able to apply aspects of chemistry in decision making related to socioscientific issues. Additional analysis of interview and written responses provided insight regarding attitudes toward chemistry, with respect to topics of applicability of chemistry to life, difficulties with chemistry, teaching approach for chemistry, and the intent for enrolling in additional chemistry courses. In addition, the surveys of female students brought out subcategories with regard to emotional and professional characteristics of a good teacher, under the category of characteristics of teaching approach. With respect to the category of course experience, subcategories of useful knowledge to solve real-life problems and knowledge for future career were revealed. The differences between the control group females and STS group females with respect to these characteristics was striking and threw insight into how teacher behavior and teaching approach shape student attitudes to chemistry in case of female students.