Factors identifying commitment to gender equality in a School of Engineering

Camila Zapata, Maria Elena Truyol

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

Abstract

Incorporating gender equality issues within higher education becomes increasingly relevant in the current context. Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5, dealing on gender equality, and SDG 4 dealing with quality education, reinforces the need to work on these issues. Engineering is a predominantly male centric area, as seen by the scarcity of women in the field. In Chile, only 18% of enrollments in engineering and construction degrees are women. It is well known that there are non-cognitive and affective factors that are relevant for student success and have a direct affect on degree choice and subsequent drop out rate. These factors bear relevance on curricular field, institutional sensitivity among others. For these reasons, it is necessary to rethink training institutions so they may become a welcoming, respectful space that favors full inclusion and development for women. The present work seeks to identify factors that enginering students themselves consider relevant and necessary to include in a School of Engineering, to allow promoting a safe and inclusive gender equal environment. Data was collected using a validated quantitative instrument, using the Sensitive Assessment for Gender Equality SAGE [1], training scale on students, regardless of their gender, in the School of Engineering of an important private entity in Chilean higher education, which has the highest enrollment nationwide. The study was complemented by conducting interviews with selected students. The results obtained go towards laying the foundations of what the engineering student community perceives as relevant regarding gender issues, during their training process. Additionally, the foregoing will allow in the near future to guide the School of Engineering in its proposals and in determining areas of opportunity and necessary actions to be made so as to be recognized as a leading institution among its peers in its commitment to gender equality.

Original languageEnglish
JournalASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings
Publication statusPublished - 23 Aug 2022
Event129th ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition: Excellence Through Diversity, ASEE 2022 - Minneapolis, United States
Duration: 26 Jun 202229 Jun 2022

Keywords

  • gender equality
  • gender perspective
  • higher education
  • women in engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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