Women's and Gender Studies (WGST) 350

Gender, Science, and Technology (Revision 1)

WGST 350

Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: None. An introductory level WGST course is recommended.

Precluded Course: WGST 547, WGST 447, WMST 446, and WGST 446.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Women's & Gender Studies home page

WGST 350 has a Challenge for Credit option.

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Science and technology play dominant roles in contemporary societies, yet women remain underrepresented in almost all subfields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Not only do they enter these areas in far lower numbers than men, but their rates of retention and persistence are much lower at all stages of education and careers—a phenomenon often described as the “leaky pipeline.”

This course introduces students to a range of theories and empirical research that critically examine the gendered cultures and norms that have shaped science and technology over the past 100 years. The experiences of men and women in STEM educational settings and workplaces are then examined closely. Finally, the course considers some of the steps taken to remove barriers and create opportunities for inclusivity and diversity.

Course Outline

  • Unit 1—Women in STEM: A History and Overview
  • Unit 2—Gendering Our Analysis
  • Unit 3—The Gendered Cultures of STEM Education
  • Unit 4—Gender in the STEM Workplace
  • Unit 5—Negotiating Change

Course Evaluation

To receive credit for this course, students must complete all the assignments and achieve a minimum grade of D (50 percent) on Assignment 4 and an overall grade of D (50 percent) or better for the entire course.

Assignment Weight
Assignment 1: Oral Review 20%
Assignment 2: Written Review 30%
Assignment 3: Report Proposal 15%
Assignment 4: Major Report 35%
Total 100%
To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.


Course Materials


Bystydzienski, J. M., & Bird, S. R. (Eds.). (2006). Removing barriers: Women in academic science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.

Other Materials

All other course materials, including the Study Guide, can be found on the course website.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university-level course.

Full information about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

The Challenge for Credit has two components: short essay responses and a major research essay. To receive credit you must complete both components and achieve a grade of D (50 percent) or higher on each activity. Credit will be awarded as either a pass or a fail.

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 1, Sept 13, 2018.