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Open Approach to Mitigate Gender Inequality in STEM


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The purpose of this note is to stimulate reflections on the potential of Open Educational Resources (OER) and the Open Education movement at large for bridging the gender gap that exists in the STEM workforce.

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Open Approach to Mitigate Gender Inequality in STEM

  1. 1. Exploring Openness as an Approach to Mitigate Gender Inequality in STEM Education This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. DETA 2017 22-25 August Kigali, Rwanda Regina Monyemangene and Brenda Mallinson (presenter)
  2. 2. Outline 2 Introduction & Context Summary of Current Research Contemporary STEM Initiatives Openness and Gender Guiding Open Principles Practical Framework
  3. 3. Context 3
  4. 4. Current Research Why so few women in STEM? Beliefs & Implicit Bias Self-efficacy Motivation Factors Historical Stereotype Interest Factors Persistence Factors Role Models Research –> Policy –> Practice continuum 4
  5. 5. Contemporary STEM Initiatives  Country Specific  3 African Female Tech Experts (Uganda, Nigeria, Malawi)  1000 girls – 1000 futures (USA); hEr Volution (Canada)  Robotix (India); Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) (Australia)  Region Specific  European Centre for Women & Technology (Europe)  Organization for Women in Science in the Developing World  Global/International  Girls in Tech (65 country programmes - 8 African)  Little Miss Geek; Technovation  Is there significant effect? Covering all Stem areas?
  6. 6. • Open Education • Open Learning • Open Courses • Open Educational Resources (OER) • Open Licensing (CC) • Open Access (OA) • Open Source Systems (OSS) Open CC-BY-SA Adapted from Czerniewicz (2012) CC-BY-SA Aspects of Open
  7. 7. Current research on OER & Gender OER & OEP Successes Women have a voice Connect with peers Access to information and education OER & OEP challenges Online: extreme inequalities in digital empowerment Offline: societal & economic barriers to women’s empowerment 7
  8. 8. Who is the Superhero? 8
  9. 9. Open Education for STEM - SWOT Analysis 9 • Uneven digital access • Perceived low quality of certification & resources • Wider access to education • Contextualisation of open educational resources • Insufficient female role models • Extended informal & flexible learning environment • Abundant OER on STEM topics Strengths Weak- nesses Threats Opportun- ities
  10. 10. Open Learning Principles (Saide, 2012) Hartwell [CC-BY-SA] • Opportunities and capacity for lifelong learning • Learner-centred; independent & critical thinking • Flexibility: determine where, when, what, how, & own pace • Recognise prior learning & experience • Accumulate credits from different contexts • Conditions for fair chance of learner success
  11. 11. 11 Regulatory Policy & Standards; Open Principles; Goals, Processes & Strategies; Metrics; Quality Assurance. Research & Innovation Role of OER and Open Education to mitigate inequalities of Gender in STEM; Identify challenges, propose innovative solutions. Practice Flexible learning opportunities; Open virtual labs; Learner centred; Promote success; Address context. Enablers Role Models; Mentoring; Self- efficacy; Peer support; Cost reduction; Incentives. OER, Open Access, Open courses, Open pedagogy. Framework: OER supporting women in STEM
  12. 12. Thank you for your attention. Questions? This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Available on SlideShare: