Adult education

Why is STEM education key for girls and women?

Posted by Janice Scheckter on 30 April 2024, 12:10 SAST
Janice Scheckter photo

UNESCO places emphasis on education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to address the fact that girls and women are under-represented in this field both in school and in the job market. Too many girls and women are held back by bias, social norms and expectations influencing the education they receive and the subjects they study. Gaps are greatest in engineering and ICT, where young women make up only 25% of students in this fields in two-thirds of countries with data. UNESCO’s groundbreaking report Cracking the code: Girls’ and women’s education in STEM was the first to highlight the barriers stifling girls‘ and women’s engagement in these fields, and provide practical solutions on how these barriers can be overcome. UNESCO supports countries to deliver gender-transformative STEM education, and raise girls’ and women’s interest and participation in these fields seen as key for our collective future.

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