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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.504 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Print: 1072-8325
ISSN Online: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v12.i4.50
pages 337-365

GENDER DIFFERENCES AND INTRAGENDER DIFFERENCES IN COMPUTER SCIENCE STUDENTS: ARE FEMALE CS MAJORS MORE SIMILAR TO MALE CS MAJORS OR FEMALE NONMAJORS?

Sylvia Beyer
Department of Psychology, University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Kenosha, WI, 53141
Susan Haller
State University of New York-Potsdam

ABSTRACT

This paper presents the findings of a study investigating a) intragender differences, i.e., differences between female computer science (CS) majors and female nonmajors; and b) gender differences in CS students. To this end, we compared female CS majors, female nonmajors, male CS majors, and male nonmajors. We found evidence for substantial gender differences on social psychological variables such as values, interests, and computer self-efficacy. However, we also found that in many respects (e.g., attitudes towards CS, CS careers, and work-life balance) female majors were more similar to male majors than to female nonmajors. We discuss the implications of these findings for women's underrepresentation in CS.