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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.468 SNIP: 0.905 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Imprimer: 1072-8325
ISSN En ligne: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.2011003010
pages 271-293

UNDERREPRESENTATION OF WOMEN OF COLOR IN THE SCIENCE PIPELINE: THE CONSTRUCTION OF SCIENCE IDENTITIES

Robert Ceglie
Department of Education, Mercer University, Macon, Georgia 31207, USA

RÉSUMÉ

Underrepresentation of women of color in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines continues to remain a pressing issue facing the future of science. The lack of representation of diverse groups of individuals in science-related fields has been the target of national initiatives that offer both funding and support to underrepresented groups, yet little progress has been made toward understanding how student's experiences lead them toward or away from science as a career choice. Addressing the call to provide a better understanding of this critical problem, this study explores the experiences of sixteen women of color majoring in one of the STEM fields. Using all four dimensions of Gee's identity theory as a framework, this study represents an effort to understand how women of color are able to strengthen their science identities during their college and precollege experiences. Through the use of in-depth interviews, elements of all four dimensions of identity were captured and analyzed. Analysis of this data provided the opportunity to gain a greater perspective into the role that identity development has for encouraging persistence in science for this population of students.


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