Gender Differences in Professional Socialization: A Study of Women and Men in the Computer Science Ph.D. Program at Carnegie Mellon
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This study investigated differences in the socialization experiences of men and women
who are in the process of becoming computer science Ph.D.s. In-depth interviews with
women in the Ph.D. program in computer science at Carnegie Mellon revealed their
experiences as a distinct minority in a male-dominated field. It was hypothesized that the
absence of role models and the reduced social support structure for women would result in
a less positive socialization experience than for men in the same program. A questionnaire
was used to examine the experiences of men and women comparatively. No differences
were found in time allocation or quality of performance between women and men, but
women found their environment to be less supportive and had less positive attitudes toward
the computer science profession than did men.