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ERIC Number: EJ792191
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 17
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 41
ISSN: ISSN-1097-6736
Advancing Evaluation of STEM Efforts through Attention to Diversity and Culture
Mertens, Donna M.; Hopson, Rodney K.
New Directions for Evaluation, n109 p35-51 Spr 2006
In 1980, the U.S. Congress charged the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a mission to lead development of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) for all of its citizens. Joseph Bordogna, deputy director of NSF, reaffirmed the agency's commitment to the mission when he stated that NSF needs to broaden participation in the community of scientists and engineers by increasing the number of women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities in the scientific workforce. The Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering (CEOSE), a congressionally mandated committee that advises NSF on policies and programs for increasing the number of underrepresented individuals in STEM fields, acknowledged NSF's leadership in broadening pathways for participation in the nation's STEM enterprise. Supported by principles based on changing demographics, increased labor market demands, and social justice and equity, NSF programs and policies have helped increase the participation of women, minorities, and people with disabilities in STEM courses and occupations. Nevertheless, despite measurable gains, their report concluded that progress has been slow and uneven across underrepresented groups in the various science and engineering fields. To move NSF toward accomplishing its diversity goals, CEOSE noted a need for bold, innovative, long-term initiatives, especially at the institutional level. Following a brief description of five current NSF projects, this article examines implications from application of a transformative lens and the concepts of cultural competency to increase understanding of how evaluation can contribute to the goal of improving STEM outcomes for underrepresented groups. The authors illustrate important methodological implications for culturally competent evaluation work within the STEM context through use of the transformative paradigm as a theoretical framework that is integrally related to concepts of cultural competency. In addition to presenting the transformative paradigm, the article also presents evaluation approaches and models especially sensitive to diversity and culture. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A