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IDST 330 Women in Math, Science and Technology

This interdisciplinary course explores the history, theory and methods of analysis for understanding institutional barriers to women's participation in math, science, and technology. Students will explore the history of women's participation, the ways in which the philosophy of science has created an exclusive view of science itself as well as science education, the educational and professional climate for women in these fields, and the ways in which stereotypical images of women in literature and film continue to influence women's participation.
4 Undergraduate credits

Effective December 17, 2006 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Deconstruct myths about feminism as observed in daily life.
  • Understand core characteristics of Riane Eisler's dominator-partnership continuum.
  • Understand how dualistic, gendered perspectives established via early ideas in philosophy of science influence math, science & technology today.
  • Analyze how the dominator-partnership continuum is reflected in science and technology (especially in mass media, language, education and business as social institutions).
  • Explain why shifting towards partnership systems could increase participation of underrepresented groups in STEM fields.
  • Apply and evaluate Riane Eisler's dominator-partnership perspective as a lens through which to engage in personal and cultural transformation.

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 5: History and the Social and Behavioral Sciences

  • Employ the methods and data that historians and social and behavioral scientists use to investigate the human condition.
  • Examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods and cultures.
  • Use and critique alternative explanatory systems or theories.
  • Develop and communicate alternative explanations or solutions for contemporary social issues.

Goal 7: Human Diversity

  • Understand the development of and the changing meanings of group identities in the United States' history and culture.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the individual and institutional dynamics of unequal power relations between groups in contemporary society.
  • Analyze their own attitudes, behaviors, concepts and beliefs regarding diversity, racism, and bigotry.
  • Describe and discuss the experience and contributions (political, social, economic, etc.) of the many groups that shape American society and culture, in particular those groups that have suffered discrimination and exclusion.
  • Demonstrate communication skills necessary for living and working effectively in a society with great population diversity.