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ERIC Number: EJ1086339
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 7
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1557-5284
Gender Differences in Conceptualizations of STEM Career Interest: Complementary Perspectives from Data Mining, Multivariate Data Analysis and Multidimensional Scaling
Knezek, Gerald; Christensen, Rhonda; Tyler-Wood, Tandra; Gibson, David
Journal of STEM Education: Innovations and Research, v16 n4 p13-19 Oct-Dec 2015
Data gathered from 325 middle school students in four U.S. states indicate that both male (p < 0.0005, RSQ = 0.33) and female (p < 0.0005, RSQ = 0.36) career aspirations for "being a scientist" are predictable based on knowledge of dispositions toward mathematics, science and engineering, plus self-reported creative tendencies. For males, strong predictors are creative tendencies (beta = 0.348) and dispositions toward science (beta = 0.326), while dispositions toward mathematics is a weaker (beta = 0.137) but still a significant (p < 0.05) predictor. For females, significant (p < 0.05) predictors ordered by strength of contribution are dispositions toward science (beta = 0.360), creative tendencies (beta = 0.253) and dispositions toward mathematics (beta = 0.200). Additional analyses indicate that engineering appears to be more closely aligned with STEM career aspirations for females than for males. These findings contribute to the growing body of knowledge indicating that at the middle school level major contributors to choosing a path toward a STEM career differ for boys versus girls.
Institute for STEM Education and Research. P.O. Box 4001, Auburn, AL 36831. Tel: 334-844-3360; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; Grade 6; Intermediate Grades; Elementary Education; Grade 7
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Louisiana; Maine; Texas; Vermont
Grant or Contract Numbers: 0833706; 1312168