Middle School Girls' STEM Education: Using Teacher Influences, Parent Encouragement, Peer Influences, And Self Efficacy To Predict Confidence And Interest In Math And Science
Rabenberg, Tabetha A.
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SubjectScience--Study and teaching (Middle school)--United States--Evaluation; Technology--Study and teaching (Middle school)--United States--Evaluation; Engineering--Study and teaching (Middle school)--United States--Evaluation; Mathematics--Study and teaching (Middle school)--United States--Evaluation
Reports are clear that there is an underrepresentation of women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers. With the current and predicted future shortage of STEM workforce, it is more important than ever to encourage young women to enter these important fields of study. Using Bronfenbrenner’s Bioecological Model, possible predictors of middle school girls’ confidence and interest in math and science where explored. The factors in this study included the macrosystems of age and race/ethnicity and the microsystems of selfefficacy, teacher influences, parent encouragement, and peer influences. Sequential regression analysis results revealed that self-efficacy was a significant predictor for confidence in math and science. While, math/science teacher influences and peer influences were significant predictors of interest and confidence in both math and science. Sequential regression analysis also indicated age was a significant predictor of math interest. The results of this study provides information on the systemic connections among the variables and suggestions on how to impact middle school girls’ STEM development, thus impacting the future STEM workforce.
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