Free course

Gender Equality in STEM - advance enrolment

Gender Equality in STEM - advance enrolment
    • Gender Equality in STEM has been developed by Equality Challenge Unit in partnership with Open Educational Practices in Scotland.

      Who should study this and what will they learn?
      This free open educational resource (OER) is designed for teachers of late primary and early secondary pupils. It aims to reduce barriers for participation in STEM subjects by female students through challenging gender stereotyping and building STEM capital in the classroom, using an enquiry based approach. This online OER is designed not only to deliver information but to contribute towards transformational change in schools.

      Course rationale
      There is an underrepresentation of female students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects at school. This is at least in part due to unconscious bias in the classroom, sexism in the school environment and wider society, lack of science capital among female school pupils and gender self-policing among school pupils, particularly between P5-S3. This has led to few women progressing to study STEM subjects at college or university and into STEM careers. There is a need to challenge stereotypes and perceptions about which subjects are appropriate for boys and girls, something which should be beneficial for the engagement, success and progression of all pupils.

      Assessment and awards
      The course blends online learning with group discussion and classroom activity. It can be studied individually but the course exercises, activities and resources will work best with a cohort of teachers/educators studying, learning and working together.

      Research shows that the most effective initiatives aimed at improving equality and inclusion for pupils are developed and undertaken at a school level (rather than classroom or local authority level). This course is therefore designed to support a school-based group of teachers, ideally with buy-in and support from senior management to enable recommendations from the group and school-wide actions to be carried out.

      Completion of this course may contribute to continuing professional learning in keeping with the requirements of the General Teaching Council of Scotland.

      If you complete the module including the assessment you will gain a digital badge for your learning.

      Warning – Please note this course is currently in a pilot phase and is untested

      We are committed to open education and are currently piloting this resource in an open format in academic year 2017/18. Therefore, please use this content and suggested classroom activities at your own risk, giving consideration to how these will be used and received in your context. If you intend to use this course in the context of your school we would welcome your input in our evaluation. We may be in touch to gather feedback on your experience in order to test and make improvements to this resource.

      You can also contact ECU's team ( if you have any questions or comments.

      This free course will be available from autumn 2017. Please enrol if you wish to be notified when it starts. To enrol you will need to register for a free account then login and click on the enrol button.

      Equality Challenge Unit logo Equality Challenge Unit

      Opening Educational Practices in Scotland logo Opening Educational Practices in Scotland

    • This course is part of a collection

      This course is part of a collection

      This course is part of a collection of courses called Opening Educational Practices in Scotland. There are 29 courses in this collection so you may find other courses here that maybe of interest to you.

      See this collection
    • Course learning outcomes

      By the end of the course you will have:

      • Explored the structural natures and harm of gender inequality and stereotyping
      • Explored the causes of female underrepresentation in STEM
      • Understand the concept of unconscious bias and explored how it influences teaching in relation to STEM
      • Understand what STEM capital is and different theories of how to build it in the classroom and how it relates to gender equality
      • Built confidence in teaching and delivering science experiments and STEM based materials
      • Gained experience and confidence in leading classroom discussions on science, STEM subjects, gender equality and stereotypes, and facilitating pupil conversations and learning in relation to subject choice and school experience 
      • Reflected on your own practice and experience

    Below is the course content. You can click on any section here and it will take you through to this section of the course.

    Course content

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      About this free course

      • 24 hours study
      • Level 1: Introductory


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