Asee peer logo

Girls Go Beyond Blackboards towards Positive Attitudes about Engineering

Download Paper |


2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Outreach to K-12 Females

Tagged Division

K-12 & Pre-College Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.641.1 - 23.641.26



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Christina Kay White University of Texas, Austin

visit author page

Dr. Christina White completed her Doctoral degree from Teachers College, Columbia University where she studied engineering education. She is the director of the National Academy of Engineering Longhorn Grand Challenges Scholars & K12 Partners Program at The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. White is also the director of an outreach program called Design, Technology, & Engineering for All Children (DTEACh) which has reached more than 1000 teachers and 85,000 students. She is the lead inventor on a patent for assistive technology. Her current research includes innovative design-based pedagogy, humanitarian engineering, and ways to attract and retain traditionally underrepresented groups in engineering education.

visit author page


Richard H. Crawford University of Texas, Austin

visit author page

Dr. Richard H. Crawford is a professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin and is the Temple Foundation Endowed Faculty fellow No. 3. He received his B.S.M.E. from Louisiana State University in 1982, and his M.S.M.E. in 1985 and his Ph.D. in 1989, both from Purdue University. He joined the faculty of UT in January 1990 and teaches mechanical engineering design and geometry modeling for design. Dr. Crawford’s research interests span topics in computer-aided mechanical design and design theory and methodology, including: (1) research in computer representations to support conceptual design, design for manufacture and assembly, and design retrieval; (2) developing computational representations and tools to support exploration of very complex engineering design spaces; (3) research in solid free-form fabrication, including geometric processing, control, design tools, manufacturing applications; and (4) design and development of energy harvesting systems. Dr. Crawford is co-founder of the DTEACh program, a ”Design Technology” program for K-12, and is active on the faculty of the UTeachEngineering program that seeks to educate teachers of high school engineering.

visit author page


Austin Bates Talley University of Texas, Austin

visit author page

Austin Talley is a doctoral candidate in the Mechanical Engineering department at the University of Texas at Austin, a Cockrell fellow, and a licensed professional engineer. His research focus is in design methodology with Universal Design and engineering education. He has received his B.S. from Texas A&M University and M.S.E. from The University of Texas at Austin.

visit author page


Anthony J Petrosino Jr The University of Texas at Austin

visit author page

Dr. Anthony Petrosino is a Learning Scientist and an associate professor of Science and Mathematics Education and the Elizabeth G. Gibb Endowed fellow at The University of Texas at Austin. He is co-founder of the nationally recognized UTeach Program. His articles have appeared in the Journal of Science Education and Technology, The Journal of the Learning Sciences, Mathematical Thinking and Learning, Educational Computing Research, The Journal of Engineering Education, and The American Educational Research Journal.

visit author page

author page

Kristen Bland University of Michigan

Download Paper |


Girls Go Beyond Blackboards towards Positive Attitudes about Engineering Abstract___________________ is a design-based learning program in afterschool innovation clubs andweek long summer camps that engages middle school students in solving real world problemsabout facing the National Academy of Engineering’s 21st Century Grand Challenges. The___________________ engineering outreach program is implemented in a primarily Latina/o,low-income community adjacent to ______, ______, a city with a strong, technology-basedeconomy, and has earned district-wide attention with early success in team-based competitions.___________________ aims to enhance interest and understanding of engineering, as well aspositively influence education and career goals for participants, and ultimately, the entire district.This study examines the effects of ___________________ on girls’ (a traditionallyunderrepresented group in engineering) attitudes about engineering. Specifically, this studyinvestigates (1) primary influences for involvement with engineering, (2) interest andengagement in engineering and design-based learning, and (3) the lasting impact of___________________ on girls’ personal, educational, and engineering progress. Variousinstruments were used to assess attitudinal changes, including student surveys, comparison tonational data (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study), and teacher interviews.Findings indicate a positive shift in students’ interest in engineering as a career, as well as theextent of students’ educational expectations. Additionally, female role models, socialperceptions, and self-concepts are predominant in shaping girls’ experiences with engineering.By working to change engineering attitudes early, ___________________ addresses the currentnational challenge to improve K-12 education to increase career and college readiness, and toenhance the STEM labor force by eliminating stereotypes and diversifying the field’sdemographics.

White, C. K., & Crawford, R. H., & Talley, A. B., & Petrosino, A. J., & Bland, K. (2013, June), Girls Go Beyond Blackboards towards Positive Attitudes about Engineering Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19655

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2013 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015