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ERIC Number: EJ1110022
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-2469-9896
Social Cognitive Perspective of Gender Disparities in Undergraduate Physics
Kelly, Angela M.
Physical Review Physics Education Research, v12 n2 p020116-1-020116-13 Jul-Dec 2016
This article synthesizes sociopsychological theories and empirical research to establish a framework for exploring causal pathways and targeted interventions for the low representation of women in post-secondary physics. The rationale for this article is based upon disproportionate representation among undergraduate physics majors in the United States; women earned only 19.7% of physics undergraduate degrees in 2012. This disparity has been attributed to a variety of factors, including unwelcoming classroom atmospheres, low confidence and self-efficacy, and few female role models in physics academic communities. Recent empirical studies have suggested gender disparities in physics and related STEM fields may be more amenable to social cognitive interventions than previously thought. Social psychologists have found that women improved physics self-concept when adopting a malleable view of intelligence, when they received support and encouragement from family and teachers, and when they experienced interactive learning techniques in communal environments. By exploring research-based evidence for strategies to support women in physics, precollege and university faculty and administrators may apply social cognitive constructs to improve the representation of women in the field. [This paper is part of the Focused Collection on Gender in Physics.]
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A