"No one said girls could do engineering":a fresh look at an old problem


Previous work has drawn attention to what, in many respects, appears to be an insurmountable problem, the lack of women and girls in engineering. The debate about why young women are not attracted to engineering mostly focuses around issues of gender, with the profession stereotypically perceived as being more suitable for men. In seeking to investigate why this should be the case a participatory research approach was adopted in which two 17 year old female High School students were employed to interview their peers about their perceptions of engineering as a career. This paper presents some of the emergent findings of this research. In total twenty teenage girls from two city centre Schools were interviewed. The two teenage researchers developed the questions themselves, focusing on issues they identified as being important factors informing girls’ views of engineering. This approach provided a ‘new’ perspective – looking at the topic through the eyes of the target sample group. By drawing attention to some of the issues around gender and engineering, this paper contributes to current debates in this area – in doing so it provides a fresh look at an old problem and offers some workable solutions for ‘how to get more girls into engineering’.

Divisions: College of Engineering & Physical Sciences > School of Infrastructure and Sustainable Engineering > Engineering Systems and Supply Chain Management
Additional Information: Copyright © September 2012, authors as listed at the start of this paper. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)
Event Title: International conference on innovation, practice and research in Engineering Education
Event Type: Other
Event Dates: 2012-09-18 - 2012-09-20
Uncontrolled Keywords: Management of Technology and Innovation,Education
ISBN: 978-1-907632-16-7
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2024 12:10
Date Deposited: 20 Dec 2012 12:12
Full Text Link: http://cede.lbo ... sion_197_gp.pdf
Related URLs: http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Conference contribution
Published Date: 2012
Authors: Andrews, Jane (ORCID Profile 0000-0003-0984-6267)
Clark, Robin


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