Results of women in technical fields study (long)

Nicole nhunter at NMSU.Edu
Mon Dec 30 13:00:36 EST 1996

Sorry this has taken so long to post.  So many people expressed interest
in my results that I decided to post the highlights.  So please don't
e-mail me to say this is inappropriate for the NGs.  I disagree and don't
want to start an argument.  I'm in the process of transferring schools and
moving, but I won't bore you with the details.  I've just been really,
really busy.

Here are the highlights of my results.  Anyone interested in more details
can e-mail me at nhunter at through the 15th of Jan.  After
that I'll have a new e-mail at my new school.

175 surveys were collected, 91 students and 84 professionals

14 students were seeking a PhD, 27 were seeking a Master's, the rest were

88% of those surveyed believed discrimination occurred against women in
the workplace and/or classroom

5% disagreed, 7% were uncertain

Few of those that disagreed gave a full explanation as to why they
disagreed..  One woman said she believed women were too timid, causing
professors to disrespect them.  Another said she thinks women complain too
much about the amount of work given to them.  

The uncertain responses were mostly because the individual had not
personally faced discrimination.  I would just like to add that even
though one may not have personally experienced discrimination does not
mean discrimination does not occur.

Here are the majority responses for agreement.  There were lots of
opinions, but these came up most often:

Main reasons why discrimination occurs in the workplace:
Not enough women managers
"Good-old boys' network"
Male managers are older and more set in their ways, not used to seeing
	women outside the home

Main reasons why discr. occurs in the classroom:
Foreign classmates aren't used to women being in the classroom, different
Gender stereotypes

It should be noted that many women do not feel discr. from classmates and
co-workers closer to their age.

25% of students surveyed said after choosing a technical field, they had
received some form of discouragement from parents, relatives, friends or
professors.  Most of this discouragement was based on traditional
patriarchal family structures.  Women should stay home and take care of
the house & family, etc.

Possible solutions:
Educating future generations
More strong female role-models for young women
Speaking up when discrimination occurs
Doing the job better than expected

This is just a summary.  The completed paper was ~24 pages.  I have given
you the highlights of responses to the surveys.  I have more research and
facts in the actual paper.  If anyone wants a copy I could snail mail it. 
If interested, e-mail me.

Thanks again for all your help.  I did receive an A on the project and an
A in the class.

Nicole Hunter

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