Volume 8

Volume 8, Number 12

April 20, 2010

13 pages604 K bytes

Factors Affecting Women’s Decisions to Pursue an IS Degree: A Case Study

Constance Patricia Serapiglia
Robert Morris University
Moon Township, PA 15108 USA

Terri L. Lenox
Westminster College
New Wilmington, PA 16172 USA

Abstract: The declining participation of women in the computer-related professions is a concern to academia and business. There appears to be a complex set of factors influencing the selection of a major and completing the degree. A case study of 25 undergraduate women explored, in detail, the events, conditions, and relationships that affected the decision of women to pursue the study of Computer Information Systems. Four themes were identified: (a) Influence by male role models, (b) positive introduction to computers/technology in the home and school, (c) a natural affinity for problem solving, figuring out how it works and meeting the challenges of an always-changing field, need to prove they can do it, and (d) greater opportunity for higher salary.

Keywords: women in IS, IS degree, technology, computers, gender differences, undergraduate, education

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Recommended Citation: Serapiglia and Lenox (2010). Factors Affecting Women’s Decisions to Pursue an IS Degree: A Case Study. Information Systems Education Journal, 8 (12). http://isedj.org/8/12/. ISSN: 1545-679X. (A preliminary version appears in The Proceedings of ISECON 2009: §2342. ISSN: 1542-7382.)