Where are the women in technology?
I first started writing this unit of work after the Google engineer James Damore released a memo in July 2017 that stated that the reason why there were less females in technology was because their gender meant they didn’t enjoy using or working with technology.
Subsequent to this was the Harvey Weinstein scandal and #MeToo movement where misogyny and workplace harassment came under the spotlight, as did the President Club furore, Oxfam sex abuse as well as burgeoning awareness campaigns in sports, banking, the BBC and government.
This unit of work can used be as a debate project where pupils can choose to investigate an aspect of the debate / a whole class debate theme / as an assembly or as a one off discussion lesson on women in technology (such as for International Womens Day on 9th March, Ada Lovelace Day on 10th Dec etc). It also works well for politics, ITGS and LPS / PSHCE.
I’ve included the lesson presentation with Success Criteria for constructing a debate, James Damore’s memo, a slideshow on top 20 females in technology, various starter activities, some useful links with statistics, news articles or further reading, and some suggested comebacks for tricky questions that might crop up.
This is a tough but important aspect of technology to teach so I’d love to hear how you get on and how it has worked with your classes. Please give me any feedback on aspects that could be improved or new links, sites or activities that have worked for you.
If you enjoyed these resources, please check out my others on programming, Illustrator, graphic design, animation and various others.