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Physical Review Physics Education Research
written by Sonja Cwik and Chandralekha Singh
Societal stereotypes and biases pertaining to who belongs in physics and who can excel in it can impact motivational beliefs of women in physics courses. Prior research has shown that women have lower physics self-efficacy than men in physics courses in which women are underrepresented. However, prior research has generally not investigated similar issues in physics courses in which women make up the majority of students. This study examines self-efficacy of men and women with similar performance in introductory algebra-based physics courses in which women outnumber men at a large public research university in the US. These courses are taken primarily by biological science majors many of whom are interested in health professions. Although women are not underrepresented in these physics courses, societal stereotypes and biases internalized by female students over their lifetime can impact their self-efficacy when they take any physics course. We find a gender gap in self-efficacy disadvantaging women at the beginning of the course. However, unlike courses in which women are underrepresented, in which the self-efficacy gender gap often increases from the beginning to the end of the courses, we find that the self-efficacy gender gap for students who received a certain grade either remained constant or decreased somewhat. Moreover, except for the students who received an A grade, the average self-efficacy of most of the other student groups decreased from the beginning to the end of the semester. Additionally, we find that most of the self-efficacy gender gap is due to students' biased perceptions about their capability rather than the performance difference between women and men.
Physical Review Physics Education Research: Volume 17, Issue 2, Pages 020138
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Education - Applied Research
- Recruitment
= Diversity
Education - Basic Research
- Societal Issues
= Gender Issues
- Student Characteristics
= Affect
General Physics
- Physics Education Research
- Lower Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Research study
PER-Central Type Intended Users Ratings
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- Researchers
- Administrators
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Free access
License:
This material is released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license.
Rights Holder:
American Physical Society
DOI:
10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138
NSF Number:
DUE-152457
Keywords:
IPLS, IRT, Introductory Physics for Life Sciences, gender equity, gender gap, gender imbalance, item response theory, physics identity, psychometrics, self efficacy survey, student attitudes
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created December 28, 2021 by Lyle Barbato
Record Updated:
January 19, 2022 by Lyle Barbato
Last Update
when Cataloged:
November 29, 2021
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AIP Format
S. Cwik and C. Singh, Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 17 (2), 020138 (2021), WWW Document, (https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138).
AJP/PRST-PER
S. Cwik and C. Singh, Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men, Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 17 (2), 020138 (2021), <https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138>.
APA Format
Cwik, S., & Singh, C. (2021, November 29). Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men. Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res., 17(2), 020138. Retrieved July 2, 2022, from https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138
Chicago Format
Cwik, Sonja, and Chandralekha Singh. "Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men." Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 17, no. 2, (November 29, 2021): 020138, https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138 (accessed 2 July 2022).
MLA Format
Cwik, Sonja, and Chandralekha Singh. "Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men." Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. 17.2 (2021): 020138. 2 July 2022 <https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138>.
BibTeX Export Format
@article{ Author = "Sonja Cwik and Chandralekha Singh", Title = {Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men}, Journal = {Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res.}, Volume = {17}, Number = {2}, Pages = {020138}, Month = {November}, Year = {2021} }
Refer Export Format

%A Sonja Cwik %A Chandralekha Singh %T Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men %J Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. %V 17 %N 2 %D November 29, 2021 %P 020138 %U https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138 %O application/pdf

EndNote Export Format

%0 Journal Article %A Cwik, Sonja %A Singh, Chandralekha %D November 29, 2021 %T Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men %J Phys. Rev. Phys. Educ. Res. %V 17 %N 2 %P 020138 %8 November 29, 2021 %U https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevPhysEducRes.17.020138


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