Women in technical universities in 2022

In 2016-2021, the number of women studying computer science increased by 38% and the number of men by 22%. However, the proportion of women among IT students increased slightly – from 14% to 16%, and was slightly higher in first- and second-year programs that did not end with an engineering degree. The share of women among IT students in both public and private universities did not exceed one-fifth – the highest rate was in the second year of study at public universities, which was 24%. Bioinformatics can boast a particularly high proportion of women.

– IT is a very popular field among high school graduates. According to the National Monitoring System for the Economic Fate of University Alumni (ELA), graduating from IT makes it much easier to get a well-paying job. In Poland, we are dealing with the labor market in the IT industry, and companies themselves are often looking for IT graduates who are still in the educational stage. However, despite the popularity of IT majors, women make up only 18% of public universities. among all students in these faculties and in non-state universities 13 per cent. Only 13 percent of that. the share of women in engineering is 27 percent. on non-engineering – says dr inż. Yarosław Protasiewicz, Director of the Information Processing Center – National Research Institute (OPI PIB).

– At present, the world is digitalizing at a rapid pace. There is an urgent need to increase the number of specialists and specialists in the field of computer science. New technologies need women more than ever. The increase in the number of computer science students in recent years has almost doubled the number of university students – which shows that the hidden potential in this area is represented by girls. I am glad that “Girls are in polytechnic!” action is held. It has been held for 15 years to motivate high school students in engineering, technical and scientific research and has become a permanent element of the educational landscape in Poland. And every girl knows that polytechnics and science faculties are their place – the founder of the campaign, President of Perspektywy Education Foundation Dr. Says Bianca Siwińska.

The share of women in private universities is low

The number of students in private universities offering technical faculties is growing. In the 2020/2021 academic year, about 300,000 people studied there. Unfortunately, the share of women in the total number of students at these universities is declining – from 58 percent. In 2016, it fell to 55 percent. In 2021.

It should be noted that the number of women studying in these faculties is growing, but it is very slow compared to the number of men. On the other hand, the areas of education that women choose more than men are cosmetology, preschool and early school education, and special education. In turn, almost all men study automation and robotics, mechanics and mechanical engineering, as well as mining and geology.

Gender balance is extremely important

– It is considered that when the ratio of women to men is in the range of 40-60 percent, we can talk about gender balance. Unfortunately, gender imbalances in various areas of education continue in the labor market and undermine socio-economic development. It should be noted that, according to research, gender differentiation has a positive impact on team performance and the innovative potential of technology companies. Therefore, it is extremely important to increase the number of women in new technology faculties. We noted that some areas of education in public technical universities already meet the balancing criteria – the author of the report “Women in Polytechnics 2022”, Associate Professor of the Laboratory of Databases and Business Analytical Systems OPI PIB Dr. Says Anna Knapinska. .

Balancing criteria in public universities meet the following: social informatics, applied mathematics, safety engineering, occupational safety engineering, biocibernetics and biomedical engineering, nanotechnology, computational engineering, mathematics and statistics, as well as computer science and econometrics. Unfortunately, the situation is different in private universities. They did not have a balanced ratio of both sexes in any of the new technology faculties. The largest percentage of women are trained in information management (37%) and creative media: game design, animation, special effects (36%). In turn, automation and robotics, as well as mechatronics, are almost exclusively men’s fields (97% and 95%, respectively). At the University of Lower Silesia in Wrocław, women made up a quarter of all students in the new technology faculties, the best result among all non-state technical universities. The second place (20%) was taken by Bialystok University of Economics. Among public universities, the largest share of students in new technology faculties was observed at the AGH University of Science and Technology in Krakow (21%), the University of Lodz University of Technology (20%) and the Wroclaw University of Technology (19%).

Source: Perspektywy Education Foundation

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