Investigation of students’ experiences of gendered cultures in engineering workplaces

Sally A. Male*, Anne Gardner, Eugenia Figueroa, Dawn Bennett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Women remain severely under-represented in engineering in Australia as in all Western countries. This limits the pool of talent, standpoints and approaches within the profession. Furthermore, this under-representation equates to restriction of the benefits of being an engineer mainly to men. Gendered workplace experiences have been found to contribute to women leaving the profession. In this study we explore students’ experiences of gendered cultures in engineering workplaces, using interviews with a purposive sample of 13 students (4 male) recruited following a previous survey. Although the overall experience of workplace learning is positive for many students, male and female engineering students reported experiences consistent with masculine cultures. Educators and employers must proactively lead improvements to the culture in engineering workplaces, prepare students for gendered workplaces and support students to reflect during and after workplace experiences. The experiences presented here could be adapted to enhance inclusivity training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-377
Number of pages18
JournalEuropean Journal of Engineering Education
Volume43
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2018
Externally publishedYes

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