WOMEN IN THE CURRICULUM
Directory of Curriculum Transformation Projects and Activities in the U.S.
Sample Project Description
University of South Carolina System Model Project for the Transformation of Science and Math Teaching to Reach Women in Various Settings
University of South Carolina System (Aiken, Beaufort, Coastal, Columbia, Lancaster, Salkehatchie, Spartanburg, Sumter, Union).
Dates: 1992 - 1994
Sue V. Rosser, now at Center for Women's Studies and Gender Research, 115 Anderson Hall, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611; phone: (352) 392-3365; e-mail: srosser@ wst.ufl.edu.
Number of participants:
25 tenured or tenure-track faculty from 9 diverse campuses.
Biology, chemistry, computer sciences, engineering, mathematics, physics, statistics.
This NSF-sponsored program was a two-year project to design, implement, evaluate, and disseminate a model for helping teachers to better reach women in the classroom and retain them in science and technological careers. The project required collaboration among nine campuses which serve diverse populations throughout South Carolina. The twenty-five participating science and math faculty came from five two-year campuses, three four-year campuses, and one large graduate research institution. Each faculty participant attended intensive interactive workshops for ten days over a period of two years and corresponded with the project director and the research assistant during interim periods. The project included two on-site workshops at each campus to individualize the design and implementation of the teaching model. Participants also attended three plenary conferences of two days' duration each for the purpose of intercampus exchange, expert consulting, contrastive analysis, and synthesis of the most successful strategies. Each campus participated in the design and testing of the teaching model, which can be adapted to various types of institutions to reach women where they are most likely to be found and then retain them so they may be recruited to graduate research programs.
The goals of the project were to: (1) actively encourage more women to enter science and math courses and to pursue science/technology careers; (2) introduce science and math faculty to the body of research findings in women's studies that can be applied to the teaching of science, mathematics, and engineering; (3) to establish a cooperative and mutually supportive network of faculty from the different campuses who share a commitment to increase the number of women entering and staying in math and science; (4) to focus on faculty and student diversity as a strength.
$119,000 over 2 years plus in-kind support from the
South Carolina System.
Evaluation, both quantitative and qualitative, was an important part of this project. The evaluation process and the data are discussed at length in the project publication. Briefly, analysis of the data supported the following conclusions: (1) faculty under the aegis of the project seemed to produce more confident students; (2) faculty under the aegis of the project appeared to improve their instructional performance and elicit greater success from their students; (3) participating faculty retained proportionately more students; (4) participating faculty are in the process of transforming the math, science, and engineering college classroom.
Rosser, Sue V. and Bonnie Kelly. Educating Women for Success in Science and Mathematics: A University of South Carolina Model Project. Columbia, SC: USC University Publications, 1994. Available through: Division of Women's Studies, 1710 College Street, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208; phone: (803) 777-4007; fax: (803) 777-9114.
Rosser, Sue V. and Bonnie Kelly. (1994). "From Hostile Exclusion to Friendly Inclusion." Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering. Volume 1, Number 1: 1-29.
Rosser, Sue V. and Bonnie Kelly. (1994). "Who Is Helped by Friendly Inclusion? A Transformation Teaching Model." Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering. Volume 1, Number 1: 175-192.