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How to get more girls interested in physics? watch

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    (Original post by AngryRedhead)
    I'm not denying that physics is an interesting and important branch of science, all I'm saying is that I personally think it's boring
    I just thought because you just said that it can't save people's lives I would tell you you were wrong. Every science is important tbh.


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    (Original post by AngryRedhead)
    I'm not denying that physics is an interesting and important branch of science, all I'm saying is that I personally think it's boring
    I know, I'm only messing with you

    (Original post by DarkEnergy)

    I may or may not have had that comic in mind when I wrote my post :innocent:

    (Original post by RossB1702)
    Yeah I find stuff like time dilation so interesting. Are you familiar with the equivalence principal ? If not you should check that out.


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    I'm familiar with it, in that I've heard of it. But I'd never say I understood it, a lot of physics makes my brain hurt :rofl:
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    (Original post by leopard923)
    What do you think schools could do to get more girls studying or at least consider studying physics? I'm thinking of starting a physics club for girls at my school and would appreciate any ideas

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    Give them equations they can relate to like using a stiletto and asking how much psi the heel has etc..
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    (Original post by RossB1702)
    I just thought because you just said that it can't save people's lives I would tell you you were wrong. Every science is important tbh.


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    Getting into a debate about which branch of science is the best is pointless because all of them are important but when you ask the general public about which branches of science are most important to medicine what do they think? Biology and chemistry. Physics is viewed as the exclusive reserve of strange people in underground magnet chambers who live far away from the 'real world'
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    Start by telling parents not to gender stereotype in playgroup already.

    But that will never happen so...
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    If you are in A level you can go into schools in secondary school years to get them enthusiastic about physics. Younger years you can set up a practical session (make sure they are interesting e.g. Anything that involves a strobe light that looks so strange you feel like a caveman in the presence of such a holy creation) and/or talk about the applications of physics which help people in society (again make sure it's interesting, don't drone on endless facts). For those in GCSE years you can talk about where physics could get them and also talk about applications in society but again make sure it's interesting (e.g. Show bridges breaking in weird ways like a certain one which tore itself apart in rather weak winds).

    The first idea I gave would be far more impactful since that's a time when students would still be finding new interests, those in GCSE years will probably already know what areas they are interested in so would only really work on those already interested in science.
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    (Original post by Kaedra)
    Physics documentaries
    Remember in one of my physics lectures we watched 15 minutes of videos of resonance going wrong like a chinook helicopter being ripped apart by the force given by its rotors.
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    (Original post by AngryRedhead)
    I don't think you used quite enough '''' faces there

    Also, what is magical about a pendulum swinging back and forth? Physics can't manufacture antibiotics and other wonderful substances that save people's lives; that is the real magic of science
    You said you don't find it exciting. I don't know what's so exciting about chemistry, but physics is elementary. Physics is the science of everything. I find the big questions exciting. Why does everything work? All the other rubbish like biology just follow as higher level derivations. Newtonian mechanics is generally boring, but there's something thrilling and empowering about calculating the velocities of planets. And quantum physics is where the real magic begins. It's not that far removed from your chemistry, but all the laws we're used to in every day life aren't true. Matter tunnels through structures, matter and energy summon each-other, and the perceived passive backdrop of time and space is alive and flowing and influencing events. That's like, even more exciting than The Cure in concert, surely? It really gets me.

    Anyway, if you're already at university maybe it's a bit late and ill-advised to try and sway you. But I couldn't help tell you why I don't find it boring. What do you like about Chemistry, anyway?

    To the original question. I don't think there's much of a problem. Why should we aim for a 50:50 split? I don't think it's odd that maybe girls just are generally less interested in some subjects than guys, and vice versa. Whether it's natural or imposed, woman do tend to be more empathetic and men more logical, and I don't think that's a falsehood, though please do correct me if I'm wrong.

    Of course, some are clearly discouraged by other factors such as the ratio itself, as evidenced anecdotally in this thread. That could be an odd one to try and fix though because of it's self-perpetuating nature. Anything actively discouraging women from going into physics should be addressed, I just don't think that the lack of an even split should ever be a reason to assume something's wrong.
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    (Original post by leopard923)
    What do you think schools could do to get more girls studying or at least consider studying physics? I'm thinking of starting a physics club for girls at my school and would appreciate any ideas

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    You might find something helpful on the resources and inspiration sections of the WISE website
    https://www.wisecampaign.org.uk/
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    Why do you want to get girls interested in physics?
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    (Original post by anoushab)
    I love that someone else is interested in this! Our schools physics department had about 40 people doing AS, 4 of which were girls. I think its a pre-determined concept, that girls just don't go for physics. Maybe even schools unintentionally encourage girls to go for other subjects. For example, a lot of the subjects most girls took clashed with the physics classes.

    Also I think another part is that most girls don't go for degrees/jobs that require physics. For example, the biggest skew is probably engineering which often requires physics. So yeah society's influences most likely, because statistics show girls and boys are pretty much neck and neck grade wise in GCSE Science

    I think the best way to get girls interested, would be to raise awareness by giving talks and more information about the pathways with physics, and to also get rid of the stigmas of 'female and male jobs' from an early age. Starting a club is an amazing idea, definitely try to advertise this around your school and get a lot of younger years to join!
    Thanks for the reply ! Its sad that there are such stigmas, I just want other girls to realise that physics applies to everything in our lives everywhere! Its such an important subject that girls should be part of

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    (Original post by Lauren-x-)
    There's only one physics teacher in our school, so that puts some people off haha.

    And to the person who said less maths would be nice - no!! The maths/equations are the best bit of physics!

    I think showing that women have been physicists in the past will help. Maybe show some more stuff about space (rather than circuits)? That stuff is out of this world (sorry), so it may blow their minds

    I hate practicals and prefer all the theoretical stuff, but I guess some people would be interested in doing the practicals. I hope the club goes ahead!
    One physics teacher ! Wow that's bad lol .. And yeah I was thinking if there was more practical stuff they could actually see results then explain them so it makes it more believable in a sense.

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    (Original post by Contempt)
    Why do you want to get girls interested in physics?
    My teacher as me why I thought our class had so little girls and how in the future we could get more. Also, in a company or lab, its nice to have a gender balance and hear a variety of viewpoints .

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    (Original post by NiamhM1801)
    Start when they're younger, try and get the girls who enjoy and are good at maths to consider physics.
    Good physics teaching helps, but poor physics teaching putting everyone off physics is easier than good teaching persuading people to continue studying it.
    A "girls only" physics club seems like a silly idea, what will people learn if there are no boys there that they won't if there were boys there?
    A lot of girls I know weren't dissuaded from physics because it's "male dominated", they were dissuaded because it's hard. There's not a lot you can do about that - people don't want to make their a levels harder by choosing a subject deemed difficult.
    I mean in my physics a level class the girls outnumber the boys - 4 girls and 2 boys, people really aren't that fussed about the lack of other girls in the class, not in my experience anyway.
    If you portray physics in a positive way then more people are likely to choose it, regardless of gender. The problem is, schools never seem to show prospective physics students all of the good aspects, whereas they do for biology and chemistry. Sometimes a lack of information drives people away.
    A lot of the time, if there aren't many girls in the class, they perform better than the boys. Perhaps use this as a persuasive element?

    Lack of females isn't only present in physics, rather all STEM subjects. The most important thing though is that the split is shrinking, which is a good thing
    I understand what you are saying about how perhaps I should set up a club for both boys and girls. In my school , the class is 5 girls to almost 20 boys so its quite spilt . I was just thinking because so many boys seem to go into the field then I should focus on showing girls why physics is so interesting? But then again, maybe it would be better to do a mixed gender club so they know what their classes may be like...

    Thanks for your ideas

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    (Original post by dragonzrmetal)
    You said you don't find it exciting. I don't know what's so exciting about chemistry, but physics is elementary. Physics is the science of everything. I find the big questions exciting. Why does everything work? All the other rubbish like biology just follow as higher level derivations. Newtonian mechanics is generally boring, but there's something thrilling and empowering about calculating the velocities of planets. And quantum physics is where the real magic begins. It's not that far removed from your chemistry, but all the laws we're used to in every day life aren't true. Matter tunnels through structures, matter and energy summon each-other, and the perceived passive backdrop of time and space is alive and flowing and influencing events. That's like, even more exciting than The Cure in concert, surely? It really gets me.

    Anyway, if you're already at university maybe it's a bit late and ill-advised to try and sway you. But I couldn't help tell you why I don't find it boring. What do you like about Chemistry, anyway?

    To the original question. I don't think there's much of a problem. Why should we aim for a 50:50 split? I don't think it's odd that maybe girls just are generally less interested in some subjects than guys, and vice versa. Whether it's natural or imposed, woman do tend to be more empathetic and men more logical, and I don't think that's a falsehood, though please do correct me if I'm wrong.

    Of course, some are clearly discouraged by other factors such as the ratio itself, as evidenced anecdotally in this thread. That could be an odd one to try and fix though because of it's self-perpetuating nature. Anything actively discouraging women from going into physics should be addressed, I just don't think that the lack of an even split should ever be a reason to assume something's wrong.
    Thank you for responding. It will be something hard to address and I don't think that an exact gender balance is completely necessary. It is just that the ratios are putting people off and addressing that may at least narrow the split. And I'm glad you think Physics is the science of everything !

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    (Original post by Joinedup)
    You might find something helpful on the resources and inspiration sections of the WISE website
    https://www.wisecampaign.org.uk/
    Thank you!!

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    Thank you everyone for their responses so far! I didn't expect so many lol.

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    It shouldn't be forcing people to do a subject to meet PC quotas. If they find it interesting, they will do it. I will probably be executed for saying this, but men and women do actually have different interests and behaviours.

    This whole problem would be solved if it were compulsory to do maths, physic, chemistry and other proper subjects until the end of school.
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    (Original post by dragonzrmetal)
    You said you don't find it exciting. I don't know what's so exciting about chemistry, but physics is elementary. Physics is the science of everything. I find the big questions exciting. Why does everything work? All the other rubbish like biology just follow as higher level derivations. Newtonian mechanics is generally boring, but there's something thrilling and empowering about calculating the velocities of planets. And quantum physics is where the real magic begins. It's not that far removed from your chemistry, but all the laws we're used to in every day life aren't true. Matter tunnels through structures, matter and energy summon each-other, and the perceived passive backdrop of time and space is alive and flowing and influencing events. That's like, even more exciting than The Cure in concert, surely? It really gets me.

    Anyway, if you're already at university maybe it's a bit late and ill-advised to try and sway you. But I couldn't help tell you why I don't find it boring. What do you like about Chemistry, anyway?

    To the original question. I don't think there's much of a problem. Why should we aim for a 50:50 split? I don't think it's odd that maybe girls just are generally less interested in some subjects than guys, and vice versa. Whether it's natural or imposed, woman do tend to be more empathetic and men more logical, and I don't think that's a falsehood, though please do correct me if I'm wrong.

    Of course, some are clearly discouraged by other factors such as the ratio itself, as evidenced anecdotally in this thread. That could be an odd one to try and fix though because of it's self-perpetuating nature. Anything actively discouraging women from going into physics should be addressed, I just don't think that the lack of an even split should ever be a reason to assume something's wrong.
    Yeah but at a-level it's so boring, why do I have to trudge through several units of vectors, Newtonian physics, circuits, Hooke etc just to get the interesting stuff like particle physics (which granted is more exciting than classical physics) Stuff like electromagnetism and astronomy is interesting, granted, it's just what you had to do to be able to study it at a-level. It didn't help that my teachers at sixth form weren't the best and couldn't explain what I didn't understand so I dropped it at AS and took Chemistry at university instead. I did originally plan to take the full physics A-level at sixth form and I actively worked towards getting a B at Maths GCSE just so that I could. I even got upset when I got told I could only take the foundation maths paper.

    Just because I've always found it more fascinating theoretically to learn about the very fabric of matter itself. Chemistry is really beautiful if you get to it, crystal structures, interesting theories... Plus it was my best subject at secondary really
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    In my college there's only one girl in the A2 physics class and the only reason why is because she's the only who passed. Personally, I would have taken physics if I thought I could get a good grade but I knew I couldn't.
 
 
 

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