Title page for ETD etd-10302012-170102

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Mlambo, Yeukai Angela
Email yeu052001@yahoo.com
URN etd-10302012-170102
Document Title Women academics in engineering : reasons for commitment to the field
Degree Master of Arts
Department Psychology
Advisor Name Title
Prof C M De La Rey Supervisor
  • thematicanalysis
  • feminist standpoint theory
  • women in engineering
  • women in academia
Date 2012-04-17
Availability restricted
This study aims to investigate the reasons women in engineering academia provide for their continued presence in the field. A review of the literature shows that the underrepresentation of women in engineering is an issue of concern for policy makers in both public and private sectors. Engineering is a male domain, with very few women present in the field. While research has focused on the reasons for women‟s underrepresentation in engineering, little research has focused on understanding why women who are already in the field remain committed to it. Using feminist standpoint theory and a qualitative methodology, this study explored the reasons women in engineering academia attribute their commitment to the field to. Interviews were conducted with nine women in academic engineering who participated in the study. All of the participants were White South Africans whose ages ranged between 22-45 years old, with an average participant age of 34 years. The participants had participated in academia from between 1-14 years, with an average participation in academia of 4 years. All participants had some form of experience in industry. Thematic analyses of the interviews conducted with the women revealed four main themes and a number of sub-themes. The themes were related to the reasons for entering and staying in academia and the challenges women face in the workplace and how these women deal with them. The study contributes to the research on women in engineering, in academia and women in engineering in South Africa.

Copyright 2011, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria

Please cite as follows:

Mlambo, YA 2011, Women academics in engineering : reasons for commitment to the field, MA dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-10302012-170102 / >


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