The gendering of technology education: minority ethnic students’ experiences of a women-dominated vocational dental technology programme

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Abstract

The gendering of technology-related work and education has spurred a lively debate. While the majority of research assumes that women and minority ethnic groups are under-represented in technology, there is a lack of research on their typical paths and positions in vocational technology education. This intersectional study examines students’ experiences of dental technology, which is a women-dominated study programme in which minority ethnic groups are also well represented. The article identifies a key discourse that the interviewees use in distinguishing dental technology from men-dominated technology education: describing it as detailed work done with one’s hands. The study strengthens existing research on the gendering of technology by providing the first vocational school-based example of how the feminine qualities associated with certain technologies can create a space for feminine identities in technology while simultaneously limiting the technological study programmes considered by women. The study further complements existing research through its intersectional approach, by showing that although feminine images associated with some technology education programmes can attract many women to study these subjects, minority ethnic students might be later excluded from working in related vocations.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalNORA: Nordic Journal of Feminist and Gender Research
ISSN1502-394X
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 520 Other social sciences
  • gender
  • segregation
  • ethnicity
  • intersectionality
  • technology
  • vocational education

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