- Hardcover: 180 pages
- Publisher: The MIT Press; 1st edition (December 1, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0262133989
- ISBN-13: 978-0262133982
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 16 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,038,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Unlocking the Clubhouse: Women in Computing Hardcover – December 1, 2001
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When there were no opportunities for women in the sciences, it was assumed they had no aptitude for the work. Even today, our tendency is to explain the gender gap by pointing out cognitive differences between men and women, overlooking the powerful societal pressures that guide young people into--and away from--certain careers. Convinced that "women must know more than how to use technology; they must know how to design and create it," Jane Margolis, a social scientist, and Allan Fisher, a computer scientist and college dean, devised a four-year study (involving some 230 interviews) at Carnegie Mellon School of Computer Science. They found that the seven percent of female undergraduates at the college started out with as much excitement and talent as their male counterparts, but often wilted early on, perceiving that male students had come to college far better prepared than they had. "The study of computer science education can be seen as a microcosm of how a realm of power can be claimed by one group of people," the authors argue, "relegating others to outsiders." Happily, thanks to their efforts, female enrollment is up at Carnegie Mellon, and more women are remaining in the field. The racial divide in computer science is as pronounced as the gender gap, however, and would benefit from studies like the one described in Unlocking the Clubhouse. Surely the door can be pried open for blacks and Hispanics as well. --Regina Marler
Margolis and Fisher document the astonishing gender gap in the field of computing by answering the question of why female interest in technology begins to wane in middle school and all but dies in high school. The authors argue that male dominance in information technology can be traced directly back to cultural, social, and educational patterns established in early childhood. Women, therefore, are vastly underrepresented in one of the most economically significant professions of the twenty-first century. After countless hours of classroom observation and interviews with hundreds of computer science students and teachers, the authors offer an array of formal educational reforms and informal practical solutions designed to rekindle and to nurture female interest in computer design and technology. Margaret Flanagan
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Who is this book for? Women in high school or college that are thinking about or are currently pursuing computing. Parents of children interested in computers. Educators in the K-12 environment and university environment. Any person interested in gender inequity and/or computing.
I think if you're looking for a recreational read this isn't really your cup of tea, but if you're looking for an academic source I highly recommend it.
I'm a female programmer, was one of the few in a competitive CS program, and wish I'd read this a decade ago.
Most recent customer reviews
evaluation of gender differences in technical education
presented along with concrete and practical suggestions...Read more