by Heather Rocker, hrocker@mywit.org, 678.778.5152

August 15, 2011

Executive Summary

According to research, girls and women have less confidence in their math abilities than males and from early adolescence, girls show less interest in math or science careers. Studies also show that girls who have a strong self-concept regarding their abilities in math and science are more likely to choose those subjects as college majors and careers.

These findings suggest that improving girls’ beliefs about their abilities could alter their choices and performance[1] —and lead to more females to choose STEM-related careers.

Women in Technology’s (WIT) Girls Get IT, as part of the WIT Foundation, collaborates with the business, nonprofit, and educational communities to inspire female students of all ages to choose careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). By working with young girls, educators and parents, WIT has developed a three-point process for helping young girls develop confidence and passion when it comes to STEM-related topics and careers.

View the complete white paper here.

[1] Halpern, D., Aronson, J., Reimer, N., Simpkins, S., Star, J., and Wentzel, K. (2007). Encouraging Girls in Math and Science (NCER 2007-2003). Washington, DC: National Center for Education Research, Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education. Retrieved from http://ncer.ed.gov.