Please send this Newsletter to research colleagues you might know who can also contribute to the Network aims.
Thank you for joining our worldwide ‘Gender & STEM Educational and Occupational Pathways and Participation Network’, developed to gain better insight into the various, closely connected aspects of career choices and pathways in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). Participation is for 4 years to start with, from 2011 to the end of 2014. After this time we will evaluate whether it is valuable to continue.
The seed for the idea of our Network was planted in 2007, when I met people from VHTO, the Dutch national expert organisation on girls/women and science/technology, invited as a keynote speaker to their conference in the Netherlands. We discussed the very many research studies and findings concerning STEM participation, but, that different studies tend to focus on one or few aspects.
Our core objectives are to gain more insight into the various, closely connected aspects of STEM career choices of girls/women and boys/men; and identify approaches to improve participation, especially for girls/women. Relevant research will span early childhood, primary/elementary, secondary, and post-secondary settings, as well as outside-school settings, and within the workforce.
A special feature of our Network is the close association between VHTO policy workers and academic researchers. It is our plan, that the diverse researchers who contribute to this field can provide concentrated information to target engagement in the various subfields of STEM, if we integrate our research findings to gain a coherent view from childhood to labour market.
To ensure the success of the Network, we are requesting that you as members actively share your recent research results; and support their dissemination through a printed or electronic volume, or special issue of a leading educational journal. In this, our first Newsletter, we include brief biographies of several Network members; others will be highlighted in a subsequent Newsletter. Could you send this Newsletter to research colleagues you might know who can also contribute to the Network aims?
Our first Conference will be held 5 & 6 September 2012 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands (shortly following the International Conference on Motivation in Frankfurt, 27-29 August). We are excited that Patron Network Member Professor Jacquelynne Eccles will present an inaugural conference Keynote address; whose work has been seminal in this field, and programmatic over a sustained period of time. Other conference details will be forthcoming in a subsequent Newsletter. For now – please save these dates!
We are excited about the possibilities this Network community affords and gladly look forward to our collective endeavour.
Warm wishes, Helen Watt, Network Coordinator
Network participant brief biographies
In this Newsletter several Network members introduce themselves. More bio's in the next Newsletter!
Jacquelynne Eccles, Patron Network Member - USA
Professor Jacquelynne Eccles is the Wilbert McKeachie and Paul Pintrich University Professor of Psychology and Education, and a research scientist at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. She has served as chair of the Advisory Committee for the Social, Behavioral and Economic Directorate at the NSF and the MacArthur Foundation on Successful Pathways through Middle Childhood. She is past president of the Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA) and was a member of the MacArthur Foundation Network on Successful Adolescent Development.
Dr. Eccles has been the associate editor of Child Development and editor of the Journal of Research on Adolescence. She is currently the editor of Developmental Psychology. She is co-author/co-editor of 15 books/special issues including Women and Sex-Roles; Managing to Succeed, and most recently, Understanding Women’s Choice of Mathematics- and Science-Related Careers; and Gender and Occupational Outcome. She has received several major awards recognizing her scholarship including life time career achievement awards from SRA, APS, Division 15 of APA, and the Society for Research on Human Development. She was elected to the National Academy of Education in 1998. Her research interests focus on the development and socialization of psychological, particularly self-system, influences on motivation, activity choice, and engagement.
Helen Watt, Network Coordinator - Australia
Helen M.G. Watt is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education, Monash University, and an Australian Research Council Research Fellow 2011-2015. Previously she has served on the Faculties of the University of Michigan, University of Western Sydney, University of Sydney, and Macquarie University. Her interests include motivation, gendered educational and occupational choices, motivations for teaching, teacher self-efficacy, longitudinal research, and quantitative methods.
Her current research work has implications for redressing the gender imbalance in mathematics- and science-related careers, and for supporting the career and professional development of beginning teachers. Helen is currently Associate Editor for Educational Research Review, and has served on the Editorial Boards for the Journal of Research on Adolescence; Equity, Diversity and Inclusion; Journal of Experimental Education; Equal Opportunities International; and the Australian Journal of Education. She has received national and international research awards, attracted substantial external funding, and co-edited recent books and journal special issues including Gender and Occupational Outcomes; Understanding Women’s Choice of Mathematics- and Science-Related Careers; and Motivation for Teaching.
VHTO, (Dutch) national expert organisation on women/girls and STEM- The Netherlands
VHTO aims to increase the participation of girls and women in science, engineering and technology in the Netherlands. VHTO is a non-profit organisation, founded in 1983. Our activities are funded by Dutch national projects to promote STEM, the Dutch Ministry of Education, schools, universities, trade associations, businesses, science centers and many others. Contact persons are Esther van Schaik and Gertje Joukes.
VHTO initiates and executes a wide range of projects and activities, from primary education through the labour market. In our opinion it is necessary to apply a chain approach and to develop gender policies and execute gender activities throughout the educational and occupational pathways of girls and women.
We feel the Gender & STEM Network can provide answers to questions that arise from different research. For instance, it would be interesting to discuss how strong or weak the evidence is that female role models have a positive influence on girls (more positive attitude of girls towards STEM & better achievements of girls in STEM-subjects). What makes STEM women (teachers, professionals) effective role models, and to whom?
• There are research results that indicate there is no significant effect of female math teachers in secondary school on test results of girls (e.g. Maresa Sprietsma, Germany, 2010).
• There are research results that indicate that contact with female scientists as professors or through websites profoundly benefits the self perception of girls in STEM (Nilanjana Dasgupta at al., USA, 2011). This does not affect the attitude of boys, though.
• There are research results that indicate that math anxiety in female teachers in primary school affects girls’ (not boys’) beliefs about who is good at math and their achievement in math. It does not affect boys (Sian Beilock et al., USA, 2010).
It is obvious that the sex/gender of role models alone is not crucial in attempts to raise the attitude and achievements of girls in STEM. VHTO activities are based on results of national and international research. When we come across interesting new research results, we often feel something is missing: links with results from other national and international research to make the evidence stronger, or manageable implications for practice. VHTO hopes that the Gender & STEM Network can provide a new, strong impetus to this aim.
Pamela Davis-Kean - USA
Pamela Davis-Kean received her Ph.D. in Applied Social Psychology from Vanderbilt University in 1997. She is currently an Associate Professor of at the University of Michigan and directs the Center for the Analyses of Pathways from Childhood to Adulthood at ISR.
Dr. Davis-Kean’s research focuses on the influence of parent’s educational attainment on the construction of home environments; the importance of looking at race and culture when understanding families and child development; the role that families, schools, and significant figures play (multi-context) in the development of children; and how socioeconomic status creates an environment for the developing brain that is important for the development of executive functions.
José Domene - Canada
José Domene, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, where he holds a Canada Research Chairship in School to Work Transition. He is also currently the Chair of the Counselling Psychology Section of the Canadian Psychological Association. His educational background is in counselling psychology (Trinity Western University) and measurement, evaluation and research methodology (University of British Columbia).
Dr. Domene teaches graduate-level courses in theories of counselling, career development, and research methods. His primary areas of research are in the areas of career development and counselling, social relationships in adolescence and young adulthood, qualitative research methods, and the development of counselling psychology as a profession in Canada. His research has been supported by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and the Canada Foundation for Innovation. More information
Mary Frank Fox - USA
Mary Frank Fox is Advance Professor in the School of Public Policy, and co-director of the Center for the Study of Women, Science, and Technology, at Georgia Institute of Technology. Fox’s research focuses upon gender, science, and academia.
Her research has introduced and established ways in which the participation and performance of academic and scientific women and men reflect and are affected by the social and organizational features of the places in which they are educated and work. She has addressed these complex processes in a range of research encompassing education and educational programs, collaborative practices, salary rewards, publication productivity, social attributions and expectations, and academic careers. Her work appears in over 50 different scholarly and scientific journals, books, and collections.
Her current research projects include a study of The Transmission Zone Between Consumers and Producers of Knowledge About Women in Science and Engineering, supported by NSF; continuing research on faculty advancement emanating from the NSF ADVANCE Institutional Transformation award to Georgia Tech, for which she was Co-PI; a study of faculty careers in computing, supported by NSF through the National Center for Women and Information Technology; and the research component of the Women's International Engineering Research Summit (WIRES), supported by NSF, for which she is Co-PI.
She was awarded the SWS Feminist Lecturer 2000 (for a ‘feminist scholar who has made a commitment to social change’), and the 2002 WEPAN (Women in Engineering Programs) Betty Vetter Research Award (for ‘notable achievement in research on women in engineering’. In 2006, she was awarded the Outstanding Faculty Member/Woman of Distinction Award, Georgia Institute of Technology.
Burkhard Gniewosz -Germany
Burkhard Gniewosz currently works as assistant professor at the University of Wuerzburg in the department of educational research. In 2002, he received a diploma in psychology of the University on Jena, Germany. In 2005, Burkhard Gniewosz finished his dissertation with the doctoral thesis on “Intergenerational transmission and projection processes of political attitudes within family”, also at the University of Jena. From 2002 until 2010, he worked in an interdisciplinary research group on “Discrimination and Tolerance in Intergroup Relations”. The work during that time was mostly on socialization effects on adolescent political development. At the same time, his research focus opened towards contextual effects (parents, schools etc.) on adolescent’s development of beliefs, values, and attitudes in a broader sense. Recently, his major research topics are in the field of contextual influences on academic beliefs, values, and attitudes.
Avi Kaplan - USA
Avi Kaplan is an Associate Professor of Educational Psychology at the Department of Psychological Studies in Education, Temple University, USA. Prior to coming to Temple University, Avi spent 12 years at the Department of Education, Ben Gurion University in Israel where he taught and chaired the graduate program in educational counseling. Avi’s research interests concern understanding people’s motivation, engagement, and development.
Working primarily within the framework of Achievement Goal Theory, Avi has been investigating the role of students’ purposes for engagement in their cognitive, affective, and behavioral engagement in school, as well as the role of the educational context in students’ purposes and their engagement. More recently, Avi has been interested in the relations between motivation and identity formation processes and for the past few years he has engaged in collaborative design-work with educators to integrate student identity exploration into the curriculum.
Caroline Mansfield - Australia
Dr. Caroline Mansfield is a Senior Lecturer in Educational Psychology in the School of Education, Murdoch University, Western Australia. She coordinates undergraduate and postgraduate units focusing on learning, teaching and assessment processes, social and emotional development, collaborative learning and motivation. Caroline’s research focuses on motivation of students and teachers in learning contexts.
Her research has investigated the factors that influence student motivation and how motivation changes and develops during this time. She is currently involved in projects about the motivation of teachers and preservice teachers, development of teacher beliefs, teacher resilience and teacher efficacy for primary science teaching. Furthermore, Caroline has a keen interest in how well teacher education programs prepare teachers to meet the challenges of the profession and has conducted recent research regarding how preservice teachers learn about classroom motivation and how this impacts on their practice.
Caroline has received awards of excellence for both teaching and research. In 2009 she received Murdoch University’s Vice Chancellor’s Teaching Excellence Award in the category of early career teaching. In 2003 Caroline received the Western Australian Institute of Educational Research’s Postgraduate Award for meritorious research for her PhD dissertation.
Kathryn Scantlebury - USA
Kathryn Scantlebury is a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Delaware, Director of Secondary Education in the College of Arts and Sciences and Coordinator of Science Education. She taught high school chemistry, science and mathematics in Australia before completing her doctorate at Purdue University.
Her research interests focus on gender issues in various aspects of science education, including urban education, preservice teacher education, teachers’ professional development, and academic career paths in academe. She recently co-edited two books, Re-visioning science education from feminist perspectives: Challenges, choices and careers and Coteaching in international contexts: Research and practice. Scantlebury is the Research Director for the National Science Teachers Association and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Juliette Spearman - Australia
I completed my undergraduate degree with first class honours from Otago University, New Zealand in 2008. I then moved to Melbourne, where I completed my Masters of Psychology (Education and Development) at Monash University in 2010 with an overall high distinction grade.
Under the supervision of Associate Professor Helen Watt I completed my thesis titled Perception shapes experience: The influence of actual and perceived classroom environment dimensions on girls’ motivations for science, which is soon to be published in Learning Environment Research.
I presented this research at AARE and APS conferences in 2010 and the HKPS conference in 2011. I have recently relocated to Hong Kong where I am currently looking for an Educational Psychologist role. The advancement of girls and women in STEM fields remains an important topic to me, which I hope to contribute to and stay informed with through this group.
Katja Upadyaya - Finland
Dr. Katja Upadyaya is working as a post doc researcher at the Research Center for Group Dynamics (RCGD), University of Michigan, U.S.A. Dr. Upadyaya’s research interests have been parent-child and teacher-student interaction, and particularly how these relationships influence students’ learning and motivation at school.
She got her Ph.D. in 2007 concerning parents’ causal attributions and children’s school achievement from the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. After that she has been doing research focusing on teachers’ perceptions and self-efficacy beliefs, and their association with children’s academic performance and motivation. Dr. Upadyaya’s recent research interests have also included the developmental changes in adolescents’ motivation and self-concept, as well as possible antecedents and consequences of school engagement, and how it may be transformed to future work engagement among Finnish adolescents.
Girls and women progressively opt out of STEM subjects, studies and careers. Several researchers suggest there is a ‘sex-based filter’ in the pipeline from secondary education, through university and finally STEM jobs, that makes girls/women leak from the stream and leaves boys/men to arrive at the end of the pipeline. In the Gender & STEM Network we intend to discuss the evidence, from participants’ and other research, and implications for policy and interventions, along the full length of the pipeline:
• Neurobiology: STEM talent (perception environment + girls; fostering talent), sex similarities & differences etc.
• Socialization processes: stereotyping, attitude, expectations by/of the environment etc.
• Primary education: STEM in primary school, female teachers, image of STEM held by boys/girls etc.
• Secondary education: achievement and attitudes of boys/girls towards STEM subjects, choice of subjects, curriculum, pedagogy and student-teacher interaction, image held by male/female students of STEM university courses/jobs/professional careers, role models etc.
• University: choice of courses (STEM or non-STEM), curriculum, pedagogy and student-teacher interaction, image held by male/female students of professional STEM jobs and careers, role models etc.
• Professional careers (again STEM or non-STEM), career opportunities & support etc.
We propose to discuss several connected sections of the pipeline in each of the next few years:
2011: start, input from participants on aims, global plan and desirable output
2012: primary education + secondary education + university; Conference 5-6 September in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2013: secondary education + university + professional career; Conference if advisable & possible
2014: updates + (final) Conference + (final) publication
VHTO is working on an online Platform where participants can update their profile/bio, exchange information, data and documents, can find the Agenda and the Newsletters that have been published. As soon as the Platform is ready, participants will be informed.
Please note in your diary: 5-6 September 2012, Network Conference in Amsterdam, The Netherlands (host VHTO). Patron Network Member Professor Jacquelynne Eccles will present an inaugural conference Keynote address. Further Conference information will appear in the next Newsletter.