Exploring How Gender, Self-Identified Personality Attributes, Mathematics Identity, and Gender Identification Contribute to College Students’ STEM Career Goals





In this study we surveyed 958 college students enrolled in Pre-calculus, Calculus I, and Calculus II courses at two different public universities in the United States to explore STEM career goals with self-identified personality attributes, mathematics identity, and strength of gender identification. We analyzed the results of our data by gender, using a series of Wilcoxon Rank Sum tests, and correlation. We found that, for both genders, certain self-identified personality attributes were more common amongst college students who selected a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) career goal as compared to college students who did not select a STEM career goal. We also found a weak correlation between the strength of one’s gender identification and mathematics identity. In this paper we report our findings and reflect on our results with regards to the shortage of women entering STEM careers.

Author Biographies

Jennifer Dawn Cribbs, Oklahoma State University

School of Teaching, Learning & Educational Sciences

Katrina Piatek-Jimenez, Central Michigan University

Department of Mathematics






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