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ERIC Number: ED523436
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 149
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1244-0513-1
Understanding the Leaky Engineering Pipeline: Motivation and Job Adaptability of Female Engineers
Saraswathiamma, Manjusha Thekkedathu
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, North Dakota State University
This dissertation is a mixed-method study conducted using qualitative grounded theory and quantitative survey and correlation approaches. This study aims to explore the motivation and adaptability of females in the engineering profession and to develop a theoretical framework for both motivation and adaptability issues. As a result, this study endeavors to design solutions for the low enrollment and attenuation of female engineers in the engineering profession, often referred to as the "leaky female engineering pipeline." Profiles of 123 female engineers were studied for the qualitative approach, and 98 completed survey responses were analyzed for the quantitative approach. The qualitative, grounded-theory approach applied the constant comparison method; open, axial, and selective coding was used to classify the information in categories, sub-categories, and themes for both motivation and adaptability. The emergent themes for decisions motivating female enrollment include cognitive, emotional, and environmental factors. The themes identified for adaptability include the seven job adaptability factors: job satisfaction, risk- taking attitude, career/skill development, family, gender stereotyping, interpersonal skills, and personal benefit, as well as the self-perceived job adaptability factor. Illeris' Three-dimensional Learning Theory was modified as a model for decisions motivating female enrollment. This study suggests a firsthand conceptual parallelism of McClusky's Theory of Margin for the adaptability of female engineers in the profession. Also, this study attempted to design a survey instrument to measure job adaptability of female engineers. The study identifies two factors that are significantly related to job adaptability: interpersonal skills (less than p = 0.01) and family (less than p = 0.05); gender stereotyping and personal benefit are other factors that are also significantly (less than p = 0.1) related. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A