Why so few women in STEM: The role of social coping

Frehiwot W. Wuhib, Sharon Dotger

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Even though there is gradual increase in their participation, women are still underrepresented in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. In the 21st century where global economy and national security needs STEM expertise more than ever, the field is not benefiting from the talent of half of the population in the world; women. While many factors are suggested to be potential barriers for women's participation in STEM fields, this paper considers the chilly climate of STEM fields and presents the role of social coping for the success of undergraduate women in STEM educational environment. The findings show that undergraduate women reported greater use of social coping than did men. It is also found that social coping is a better predictor of commitment for women than it is for men. This has implication for the male-dominated, highly impersonal and individualistic culture of STEM fields. Therefore, STEM fields should consider this in creating more collaborative and comfortable environment for women to better participate, retain and succeed in these fields.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationISEC 2014 - 4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISBN (Electronic)9781479932290
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Event4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference, ISEC 2014 - Princeton, United States
Duration: Mar 8 2014Mar 8 2014

Publication series

NameISEC 2014 - 4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference

Other

Other4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference, ISEC 2014
CountryUnited States
CityPrinceton
Period3/8/143/8/14

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Keywords

  • Commitment
  • persistence and retention
  • social coping
  • women in STEM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

Cite this

Wuhib, F. W., & Dotger, S. (2014). Why so few women in STEM: The role of social coping. In ISEC 2014 - 4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference [6891055] (ISEC 2014 - 4th IEEE Integrated STEM Education Conference). Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. https://doi.org/10.1109/ISECon.2014.6891055