Study Recommends Early Interventions to Increase Girls’ Interest in Mathematics

A new study by scholars at Cornell University, Boston University, and the University of Kansas recommends that educators institute intervention programs for young girls as early as elementary school to increase their interest and abilities in mathematics and science.

The study offers a detailed analysis of women in all scientific fields. It shows that women tend to have low representation in fields that are the most mathematically intensive such as engineering, computer sciences, mathematics, and the physical sciences.

GintherDonnaDonna Ginther, a professor of economics at the University of Kansas and a co-author of the study states that “math is the key to many of these majors where women are underrepresented. Math is the gatekeeper, and young women’s views of how well they do math is a gatekeeper. It becomes a cumulative advantage story that if you don’t have the math early on, it’s going to be the road not taken — a very lucrative road not taken.”

The study, “Women in Academic Science: A Changing Landscape,” was published in the journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest. It may be downloaded by clicking here.

Filed Under: Research/StudySTEM Fields


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