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How to attract more women to hard sciences?

  1. Oct 7, 2005 #1
    Any ideas from our very astute members on getting more women involved in math and science? Think of all the brain power we are missing out on? Would it take a dramatic change in culture? I guess I am taking a fairly egocentric view here, since I am only familiar with the US. Are their any countries where their is an even mix of men in women in hard sciences?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 7, 2005 #2
    Are you crazy?! If women start to learn then blood will rush from their uterus to their brain and leave them baren! Then BAM! No more human race! Is that really what you want?

    P.S. I learned that on the O'Reilly Factor.
  4. Oct 7, 2005 #3


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    Maybe it we stopped telling everyone they're so hard, we'd get more people willing to try them. :uhh: Then again, promoting their hardness might help get the women to notice. :uhh:

    Okay, we've actually had some serious discussions on this before. After all the many discussions, I still think that, yes, it is going to take a pretty dramatic culture change. The problem is that us scientists aren't going to be the ones who will be able to reach girls at a young enough age to set them on a path that will make science a desirable option for those who have the aptitude for it. I really think the encouragement needs to come from an early age from both parents and teachers. It's possible we can reach the teachers, but reaching the parents is much harder.
  5. Oct 7, 2005 #4
    It really is too bad that western culture doesn't promote this equally. But so many old stereotypes are getting broken down fairly quickly- just look at the number of male nurses and female engineers.

    Actually I talked about this with a good friend of mine, who has a BA in math is getting her Ph.D. in Physics. She admits to acting clumsy and scatter-brained when faced with high powered faculty to try and up her "geek factor." She says it is an unconcious mechanism, but she notices it. I found that facinating and I felt horrible that she needs to do this to try and validate her existance in the physics world. (or maybe it has nothing to do with the intellectual community at all and it is more her... but I doubt it since she is brilliant).
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