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How to get more girls interested in physics? watch

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    (Original post by richardhello)
    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.
    I actually agree with men and women having different behaviours - if you go to an English class/Art/MFL I've noticed there are always significantly more girls than guys in those classes and yet the lack of boys doesn't seem to concern anyone.

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    Lol what's this chemistry vs physics feud? I find them equally interesting (excluding metaphysics ).
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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
    Have you not watched Interstellar?
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    going to an all girls school, having taken physics for a level, i have noticed it only attracts the people who are really good at maths, otherwise theres no point taking it tbh, so first step is to make people find maths really fun (as everyone in my class does)
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    (Original post by nomophobia)
    I actually agree with men and women having different behaviours - if you go to an English class/Art/MFL I've noticed there are always significantly more girls than guys in those classes and yet the lack of boys doesn't seem to concern anyone.

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    I also agree to an extent. I think it is important for all subjects to have a fairly balanced gender mix but I agree that it should not be forced as it is partly a behavioural thing as you say. I brought up physics simply because my teacher asked me and I thought it would be interesting to ask you guys. Of course, the problem applies for many subjects and there is no easy fix. Thank you for replying

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    (Original post by dnr_23)
    going to an all girls school, having taken physics for a level, i have noticed it only attracts the people who are really good at maths, otherwise theres no point taking it tbh, so first step is to make people find maths really fun (as everyone in my class does)
    Good idea - physics has so much maths at a level so it would be good to look that the maths side. Thanks for the reply

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    (Original post by champ_mc99)
    Have you not watched Interstellar?
    :nope:
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    Hmm, we do have only one girl in our physics but she is an angel! (If she'd ever notice me )
    Moving on....
    I guess Physics is not taken as much by girls as from GCSE's they find it to be boring, so they don't pursue taking it to A-levels, Furthermore the media has sent the message that it is generally a male subject.
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    (Original post by leopard923)
    Good idea - physics has so much maths at a level so it would be good to look that the maths side. Thanks for the reply

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    No it doesn't. Physics at A level is almost completely void of any maths beyond year 9 level.
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    Maybe you could talk to heads of year or the headteacher even about going into primary schools to educate them on physics? Take in some simple experiements and get them interested at a young age so hopefully they'll continue finding it fun. That's what my physics class are doing our teachers arranged for us to go teach some physics lessons in local primary schools.
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    (Original post by harrisonchar)
    Maybe you could talk to heads of year or the headteacher even about going into primary schools to educate them on physics? Take in some simple experiements and get them interested at a young age so hopefully they'll continue finding it fun. That's what my physics class are doing our teachers arranged for us to go teach some physics lessons in local primary schools.
    That's really cool I wish I could so that !

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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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    Listen, people like you might mean well, but you are wasting your time. Girls have completely free will to choose physics if they want to. Clearly if a smaller proportion of girls do physics; then girls might prefer to do other subjects in general. It is an incredibly futile use of your time to try and encourage girls to do something they are perfectly able to do if they want to anyway. It is as stupid, for the same reason, to start clubs to get men into nursing, or women into taking out the bins, which by the way is 97% male.
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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!
    Here in M.Sc. Physics class out 100 only 16 are boys 86 girls.....
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    As a physics tutor, what I have learned from my students is that engaging students in physics (male or female) starts early on by firstly ensuring that they are actually able to understand and confidently apply physics and maths. Countless times I've been told by students that they hate a subject and when I ask why, it's just because they're currently not very good at it. As soon as they get good at it, they start to like it because THEY feel good when they do the work and get things right and achieve their goals.

    Alongside this, it is important to show students what physics can actually be used FOR in everyday life and specifically, what types of things it is used for that they are currently interested in (e.g. its use in the design of electric guitars could engage a student who currently plays electric guitar as a recreational activity). This can be tailored to things females specifically use / are interested in, in order to draw their interest. The uses of physics need to be constantly reinforced during class, and need to be backed up with a sense of genuine enthusiasm about physics and all the potential career paths it leads to - it really makes a difference.
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    Making the theory more interesting (if they find it boring) or more comprehensive (if they are currently confused with the content).

    I think physics can be really interesting but what really turned me off from taking it as a subject in school was how I kept getting the theory questions wrong.
    I enjoy doing the maths part of physics but I feared doing badly in my exams with the written questions, which was why I chose not to risk my grades with taking physics (I took chem instead haha!)
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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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    I haven't read through all the posts (long) so sorry if someone has already suggested this, but have you considered trying to get some female physicists to come and speak to the the year group/school directly. They could speak about the work they do and why its so important for more women to join the field. I'd contact some universities i'm sure they'd be willing to help- there's a good pr story there for them!
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    (Original post by stepmumdiaries)
    I haven't read through all the posts (long) so sorry if someone has already suggested this, but have you considered trying to get some female physicists to come and speak to the the year group/school directly. They could speak about the work they do and why its so important for more women to join the field. I'd contact some universities i'm sure they'd be willing to help- there's a good pr story there for them!
    OP could check out the Ogden Trust http://www.ogdentrust.com/
    it's purpose is to encourage everyone to study physics... but as you can see on the site quite a few of it's outreach officers are female.
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    This thread makes me so happy. As a 17-year old girl who wants to pursue physics at degree-level, I think your best shot is showing them how magical physics really is. Tell them about dark-matter, dark energy the fate of the universe, cosmology, quantum theory (basics, of course).

    I think anyone who learns about these things would love physics. Talk about Oppenheimer, Feynman, Maxwell. Physicists have never fit in, they've always felt out of place. I think if you make these people seem human, rather than the geniuses they are so often proclaimed to be, people would begin to see this subject as less intimidating and more........fascinating.

    I'm no genius. You don't have to be a genius to do physics. You just need to love it. Try showing them that.
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    Thanks everyone for their replies

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