Applying a Gender Lens to the Predictors of High-tech Career Intentions among Engineering Students in Bangladesh

Samina M. Saifuddin, Lorraine Dyke, Maria Rasouli

Abstract


This paper explores the extent to which perceived job attributes, perceived male dominance in the high-tech sector, and perceptions of the media’s gendered representation of high-tech might influence students’ intentions to pursue a career in the high-tech sector. A survey was conducted with 209 female and 640 male engineering undergraduate students in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The results suggested that both female and male students were attracted to high-tech when they viewed it as a challenging career.  Gender role stereotypes also, however, influenced the career intentions of both women and men.  Although they are influenced by different types of gendered norms – women by attitudes toward the suitability of high-tech careers for women and men by male media images of high-tech – the gendering of high-tech work influenced both women and men. The results contradict previous findings that female students perceive high-tech work as boring, uncool, and nerdy but support previous findings on the negative effect of gender stereotyping on female students’ interest in pursuing a high-tech related career

Keywords


Gender; career; engineering; high-tech; IT

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