Women in STEM courses benefit from project-based learning

November 21, 2013

Researchers at Worcester Polytechnic Institute have discovered that a project-based curriculum may boost female success in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields. Worcester ran a survey on its redesigned courses across all disciplines, which focused on project-based curriculum. A subsequent study on engineering courses provided “intriguing” data: Worcester’s project-based approach to engineering education appeared to be substantially more effective for women. In most of the survey questions surrounding the benefits of the learning model, women reported positive feedback more frequently than men. For example, 63% of women said the program helped them understand the connections between technology and society, compared to just half of men. The only areas in which women reported similar gains to men were related to technical skills “more easily obtained in traditional course work.” Inside Higher Ed