Category: Women in science

For Girls, Learning Science Outside Linked to Better Grades, Knowledge

Read the full story from North Carolina State University.

In a new study, North Carolina State University researchers found that an outdoor science program was linked to higher average science grades and an increase in a measure of science knowledge for a group of fifth grade girls in North Carolina.

The findings, published in the International Journal of Science Education, indicates outdoor education could be a promising tool to help close gender gaps in science.

Webinar: Preventing and reducing occurrences of sexual harassment and assault among field-based research disciplines

Apr 27, 2021, 4:00 pm
More information 

Speaker: Carol E. Colaninno: Research assistant professor, Center for STEM Research, Education, & Outreach, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Research suggests that sexual harassment and assault frequently occur during field research and students, trainees, and early career professionals are more subjected to harassing behaviors compared to mid-career and senior scientists. In many field-based research disciplines, students, trainees, and early career professional are put in situations where harassment traditionally has been unchecked. Field sites can be remote and students may be required to live on site with fellow students, teaching assistants, and field directors in relative isolation. In 2020 our research team, with funding from the National Science Foundation, began conducting investigations to document practices that field directors implement to reduce and prevent harassment; to understand how directors and students perceive these practices; and to reimagine mechanisms that help improve field site research, learning, and living conditions to more fully benefit the well-being of students, trainee, and early career professionals. Although only in the initial phase of our research, we have identified several practices that may be modified to reduce and prevent conditions that have the potential to lead to sexual harassment and assault. I discuss and review these initial findings and detail our future research plans. 

Erasing Women from Science? There’s a Name for That

Read the full story at JSTOR.

Countless women scientists have have been shunted to the footnotes, with credit for their work going to male colleagues. This is called the Matilda Effect.

Pay gap widens between female and male scientists in North America

Read the full story in Nature.

Permanent positions in US and Canadian industry and academia pay men higher wages than women.

As More Women Enter Science, It’s Time to Redefine Mentorship

Read the full story in Wired.

In STEM fields, female students often can’t find an adviser who looks like them. It’s important to talk about what they need from a mentor.

Why combining diversity with STEM is a good thing for kids

Read the full story in National Geographic.

Wildlife biologist and mom Rae Wynn-Grant talks about the importance of diversity in STEM—and how parents can embrace it for their children.

Coronavirus cutbacks could reverse hard-fought equity gains in STEM workforce

Read the full story in Nature.

Female university staff have already lost more jobs, more paid hours, and more career opportunities than their male colleagues in Australia since the pandemic hit, according to a new report.

But there may be worse to come, because women are also 50% more likely to hold at-risk casual and short-term contract positions.

Diverse scientific superstars: A celebratory parade: Part 1: Space travel and environmental conservation

Read the full post at Science Connected Magazine.

In light of Black History Month in February and upcoming Women’s History Month in March, The Biota Project seeks to spotlight a number of heroic scientists who surmounted gender, racial, ethnic, religious, or disability adversity to contribute to their respective STEM fields. As passionate STEM professionals and advocates, we recognize the invaluable contributions of marginalized scientists and STEM practitioners and seek to elevate their presence in the scientific community. To this end, we created the following discipline-specific list of professionals representing marginalized identities in STEM. You might recognize a few names, you might recognize more than a few; but we can guarantee that you will learn about someone new and widen your perspective on what a scientist looks like.

Margaret S. Collins, Pioneering Black Entomologist

Read the full story from JSTOR Daily.

She was the first African American woman to earn a PhD in entomology as well as an activist for freedom in the Civil Rights Movement.

She started climbing trees as a kid. Then this ecologist helped create scientist Barbie.

Read the full story in the Washington Post.

Nalini Nadkarni didn’t play with Barbies as a girl. She was too busy climbing the maple trees in her front yard in Bethesda, Md.

The forest ecologist might seem an unlikely person to help design and promote Barbie dolls. But over the past six months, she has been inspiring girls worldwide to play with dolls that have a magnifying glass and all-terrain boots instead of tiaras and high heels. It’s through new explorer Barbie dolls designed with her input by Mattel and National Geographic.

The line of dolls, which includes an astrophysicist, a conservationist, an entomologist, a marine biologist and a nature photojournalist, are long overdue, said Nadkarni, 65. Nadkarni is a University of Utah biology professor who studies rainforest canopies and how plants get their nutrients.

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