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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.468 SNIP: 0.905 CiteScore™: 1.65

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

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v5.i3.50
pages 279-291

CROSS-CULTURAL COMPARISONS OF GENDER DIFFERENCES IN THE SPATIAL SKILLS OF ENGINEERING STUDENTS

Sheryl A. Sorby
Department of Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, Michigan 49931, USA
Cornelie Leopold
Architecture, City and Environmental Planning, and Civil Eng., University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany
Renata Gorska
Division of Descriptive Geometry and Engineering Graphics, Cracow University of Technology, Cracow, Poland

ABSTRACT

Three-dimensional visualization skills are critically important for success in engineering careers. A variety of strategies have been implemented to enhance the spatial visualization skills of engineering students. Along with these strategies, standardized tests such as the MCT (Mental Cutting Test), the MRT (Mental Rotations Test), and the PSVT:R (Purdue Spatial Visualization Test: Rotations) have been utilized as a means for measuring spatial ability. This article examines the factors that seem to be significant in the development of visualization skills, and also examines gender differences in background and in visualization ability for students enrolled in United States, German, and Polish technical universities. Thus, gender differences in visualization skills which cross international boundaries can be studied.


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