Building girl’s self-esteem in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
One of the four European Union’s strategic priorities (2019-2024) is developing a strong and vibrant economic base. This entails investing in skills and education and embracing digital transformation.
While the field of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics is rapidly growing and creates hundreds of thousands of new jobs every year, the share of women in this sector is still low. According to the National Science Foundation, the underrepresentation of female professionals in STEM has been a significant concern calling for more initiatives at a European level.
Cultural and social norms seem to influence the perceptions of both boys and girls about their abilities, role in society, and future career paths. The social environment is also a catalyst for framing their gender roles early.
To address the challenge, a team of universities, oganisations, and policymakers came together to empower the school communities and elevate their competences, preparing them for the digital era: University of Zagreb - Croatia, CARDET - Cyprus, Greece – Regional Directorate of Primary and Secondary Education of Attica –Greece, and Autonomous University of Madrid – Spain, The Rural Hub – Ireland.
The RoboGirls project focused on building the capacity of educators to organise and implement interdisciplinary STEAM activities using Robotics and Coding to narrow the gender gap and encourage more girls to play an active role in the digital age.
During the project lifecycle, the consortium developed an E-learning platform with Open Educational Resources, including evidence-based research on STEAM education, gender-inclusive practices, innovative teaching methodologies, policy recommendations, and rich pedagogical material for primary and secondary levels. In addition, an interactive career simulator is fully accessible on the project website (https://robogirls.eu/en/career), allowing young students to visualise STEM professions and reflect on their future career choices.
In all partner countries, 1300 students and 60 educators engaged in the activities and used the material of the RoboGirls project (*both boys and girls equally participated in all the actions).