Originally published in 1985. This book describes the Girls Into Science and Technology (GIST) Project, an action research programme carried out in co-educational comprehensive schools in Greater Manchester. GIST simultaneously took action to redress the balance of girls in science and technology and investigated the reasons for the shortfall. The book highlights the world of the typical school science lab and craft workshop where boys and girls compete with each other and teachers treat the two sexes differently. It reveals how boys and girls view science and sex roles and how their attitudes changed during the course of the project. The GIST team worked with science and craft teachers to alter school factors which discourage girls from continuing with scientific and technical subjects. The author describes the reactions of teachers and pupils to intervention strategies, which included visits to schools by women working in technical jobs, development of teaching material more orientated towards girls’ interests and a humanistic view of science, observations in school labs and workshops, and careers education linked to option choices in school. In the final chapters she spells out the lessons to be learned for teachers and those engaged in training, and evaluates the national impact of the GIST project.
Table of Contents
Introduction Part 1: The Need for GIST 1. The Need for GIST 2. Edging Girls Out 3. The First Year Part 2: The VISTA Intervention 4. VISTA 5. Response to VISTA 6. Girl Friendly Science Part 3: The GIST Children 7. The GIST Children: Attributes and Attitudes Part 4: Other Interventions 8. The Roadshows 9. Craft, Design and Technology: A Hard Nut to Crack 10. Girls Only? Part 5: The GIST Teachers 11. The Teachers’ Perceptions of GIST 12. The Teachers’ Response to the GIST Project Part 6: Conclusions 13. The Effects of GIST 14. Implications. Appendix 1: GIST Questionnaire: VISTA Visits. Appendix 2: Intervention Strategies. Appendix 3: Action Research. Endpiece