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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.468 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.v5.i1.10
pages 1-16

FEMINISM AND SCIENCE EDUCATION: AN INTERDISCIPLINARY KNOWLEDGE AND PRACTICE PROJECT

Maralee Mayberry
Department of Sociology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Leigh Welling
Department of Geoscience, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Jaime Phillips
Department of Sociology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Cheryl L. Radeloff
Department of Sociology, University of Nevada Las Vegas, Box 455033, Las Vegas, NV 89154-5033
Margaret N. (Peg) Rees
Department of Geoscience and Women's Studies Program, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

ABSTRACT

This article examines how insights from feminist science studies and feminist pedagogy can be integrated into science education courses and used as vehicles to transform scientific inquiry and practice. We suggest that educational reforms designed to add more women to science will not foster the social and scientific transformations envisioned by feminist science scholars. Rather, we contend what is needed is a reconceptualized science education that expands the definition of scientific knowledge to include not only knowledge about the physical world, but an understanding of Western science's biases and androcentrism, as well as the cultural, social, and political contexts within which science is produced and used. Incorporating feminist epistemologies and critical theoretical analyses into our conception of “doing science” is crucial to accomplishing this level of integration. PROMISE (Projects for Multicultural and Interdisciplinary Study and Education), a 3-year, National Science Foundation-funded “Social Study of Geology” project that is in progress at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, is committed to putting the insights of feminist science scholars into practice. This article describes the auricular components of PROMISE to illustrate how feminist concerns can become a critical component of science education.


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