While there is a great deal of research on gender in engineering education, there is less that uses explicitly feminist theory to talk about powerful social relations in the education of engineers. This talk will outline several different ways our research group incorporates feminist theory into different educational research studies, including into an ADVANCE grant that looks at the experiences of women faculty in STEM operating within gendered promotion and tenure policies, and a CAREER grant called "Learning from Small Numbers" that uses storytelling by undergraduate engineering students to understand how engineering educational institutions are gendered and raced. I will discuss the different theoretical frames that prompt these investigations, contrasting them with much existing research on gender in engineering education, and suggest what advantages such frames afford diversity and inclusion efforts in engineering education.
Alice L. Pawley is an associate professor in the School of Engineering Education with affiliations with the Women's Studies Program and Division of Environmental and Ecological Engineering at Purdue University. She has a B.Eng. in chemical engineering (with distinction) from McGill University, and an M.S. and a Ph.D. in industrial and systems engineering with a Ph.D. minor in women’s studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She runs the Research in Feminist Engineering (RIFE) group, whose diverse projects and group members are described at the website http://feministengineering.org/. She can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.