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Education is putting women off STEM careers, claims report


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There’s still a real shortage of women going into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) careers and more new research shows that women still feel barriers in succeeding in these fields. 

A new report from Debut revels that despite almost half (46%) of all females considering a STEM career while at school, only 13% make it through to fulfilling their plans. 

Education, or the lack of, around the STEM seems to
be the biggest barrier according to those women asked. 31% blamed the lack of ‘real life’ careers education for the lack of women in STEM while 23% claimed the way STEM subjects are taught put them off.

The research, which involved 500 females aged 16-24 revealed that their interest in STEM careers ended before leaving secondary school. 

According to the females asked, the top five ways that secondary schools could fuel their interest in STEM careers more are as follows: 

1)      Provide ‘real life’ STEM careers education, such as ‘a day in the life of’ videos (31%)

2)      Make STEM subjects more interesting to learn (23%)

3)      Make STEM industry work experience mandatory (13%)

4)      Promote the fact that STEM careers pay better salaries (10%)

5)      Promote the fact that career progression is better in STEM industries (9%) 

Charlie Taylor, CEO & Founder of Debut commented: “This research has revealed that the UK education system still has a long way to go when it comes to educating females on the positives of entering a STEM industry. That said, schools and teachers are not the only ones accountable for inspiring the next generation – parents and employers have an important role to play.  

“It would be great to see more STEM employers going into primary and secondary schools, or better still, live streaming direct from their organisations into the classroom, to give young people an insight into what STEM careers involve. Companies would benefit from this time investment in the long-run.”

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