Major Papers


gender stereotypes, gender issues in education, coding boot camp education, education in CS


Women’s participation in computer science is important for many reasons, including playing a significant role in a country’s economic development. A skilled workforce is needed to remain competitive in the globalized world, especially in the area of computer science. This research aims to explore the recent research literature around the factors that contribute to women’s low participation in computer science. Key to this exploration is helping to answer the question: Why does the proportion of women in Western countries’ computing fields remain low, despite years of research and programs with the intention of increasing women’s participation in computing? In order to address this question, and employing a feminist theoretical lens, I conducted a comprehensive literature review. To some degree, I also analyzed my own autobiographical experiences in the field of computer science to better understand how gender relations shape that world. The current study concludes that the main factors that shape women’s low participation in computer science are gender stereotypes, a misunderstanding of science computer curriculum, “know-it-alls” learning environment, unfair work environment, and pay gap. All of these factors will be discussed using three explanatory lenses: psychological explanations, social factors and structural factors. In the end, I conclude with suggestions for how to increase the number of women within this field.

Primary Advisor

C. Greig

Program Reader

G. Salinitri

Degree Name

Master of Education



Document Type

Major Research Paper

Convocation Year