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How to Draw Women into the Maker Movement

Elizabeth Dayton, Ph.D. has produced a literature review for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office Special Populations Collaborative on Drawing Women into the Maker Movement.

According to the paper, surveys show that over 80% of Makers are men, reflecting the same kind of gender imbalance found in most tech companies. This has significant implications for the kinds of ideas and inventions produced in Makerspaces.

This paper reviews the research and provides insight into how California Community College Makerspaces and other Maker communities can take steps to be more inclusive and benefit from a diverse community of Makers.

Topics include ways to address the disparities in the Maker movement:

  • Broaden the definition of Making
  • Offer open-ended, versatile prompts
  • Emphasize the broader benefits of Making
  • Build Maker communities
  • Provide mentors

Learn more at ccc.specialpopulations.org and jspac.org.

 

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Intel: MakerHers – Ideas for Inclusive Makerspaces

This Intel report, MakeHers: Engaging Girls and Women in Technology through Making, Creating, and Inventing, can provide use research based information to assist colleges in making makerspaces inclusive and welcoming to all students.

The report describes how the Maker Movement has the potential to change the future for girls and women, a group traditionally underrepresented in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.

Some of the key findings include:

  • Girls and women makers are more likely than male makers to come to making through multiple pathways including engineering, computer science, arts, and design.
  • Making is already popular with tweens and teens in the U.S., including both girls and boys.
  • Girls and women face constraints to participating in making