A Synthesis of Practice-Oriented Literature in Gender and STEM


  • Elizabeth G. Creamer Virginia Tech, USA


Evidence based practice, content analysis, gender and STEM


Even as endorsement for the idea of "evidence-based practice" has become widespread, there has been little headway to find an empirical way to gauge whether models for best practice put forward in practice-oriented literature are&warranted. This research addressed questions about trends over time in both the quantity and quality of the evidence base of articles describing activities initiated to&promote the recruitment of retention of women and girls in STEM. Practice-oriented publications (n=142) were identified from a larger database (N=976) of articles with references to gender and STEM in the title or abstract. A six-point ordinal scale&was used to measure the quality of the foundational or evidence base of the articles. Between 1995 and 2009, the percentage of articles meeting the threshold&definition of being evidence-based grew from 43.8% in the first time period, to 49.3% in the second time period, and to 59.6% in the most recent time period. The relatively recent expansion of the digital infrastructure that supports the&dissemination of STEM-related publications, promises to minimize redundancy and to ensure that resources are invested in initiatives where there is evidence to&support its potential to be effective.

Author Biography

  • Elizabeth G. Creamer, Virginia Tech, USA

    Dr. Elizabeth G. Creamer is professor of educational research and evaluation in the School of Education at Virginia Tech, where she has been employed in various capacities since 1978. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Northwestern University, a master’s degree from Colorado State University, and a doctorate from Virginia Tech. She now teaches graduate courses in mixed methods and qualitative research methods.

    Creamer has been doing research about gender and SET issues since the early 1980s.& She is the principal investigator (PI) or co-principal investigator of over $4 million in external funding, with three projects funded by the National Science Foundation related to women’s interest and success in science, engineering, and technology fields.& Her publications involve issues related to women’s under-enrollment in engineering and information technology.

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Research and theoretical papers

How to Cite

A Synthesis of Practice-Oriented Literature in Gender and STEM. (2015). International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology, 7(1), 74-90. https://genderandset.open.ac.uk/index.php/genderandset/article/view/385