Increasing Gender Equity in Tertiary Science and Engineering Programs

Laura Pilozzi-Edmonds

in Lessons in Educational Equality

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199755011
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918867 | DOI:
Increasing Gender Equity in Tertiary Science and Engineering Programs

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Women are underrepresented in tertiary science and engineering programs in most countries globally. This chapter explores how a pioneering initiative at the University of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania has dramatically improved the enrollment, achievement and acceptance of female students in science and engineering programs. The Special Pre-Entry Program helps young women with poor science grades in secondary national exams to gain admittance to the College of Engineering and Technology. The central finding from this case study is that poor grades at the end of secondary school do not necessarily reflect young women’s potential to perform well in higher education. By their last year of study, girls coming from the pre-entry program were on par with the rest of the class in terms of performance. Policies should therefore ensure that girls receive a quality education at the secondary level in the gender-sensitive environment necessary for them to develop to their full potential.

Keywords: tertiary education; higher education; Tanzania; educational equity; educational equality; gender equity; gender equality; science and engineering

Chapter.  9404 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Developmental Psychology

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