Doctoral Dissertations

Orcid ID White

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Joseph R. Miles

Committee Members

Erin Harden, Dawn Szymanski, Elizabeth Schussler


The study examined the experiences of eight participants who partook in an intergroup dialogue (IGD) on gender and sexism in STEM, and the learning that resulted from this experience. Participants consisted of upper-level undergraduate students (junior and senior class rankings) as well as graduate students who were currently obtaining degrees in STEM fields. The study sought to understand how IGD members construct meaning of their experiences as those experiences relate to their understanding of interpersonal and systemic sexism in STEM. Grounded theory was used to code the data and generate categories that were organized into a conceptual framework which centered around one central, all-encompassing explanatory category. A constructivist paradigm was used to analyze the data with a social justice lens. Ultimately, Perspective-Taking emerged as the central category with five subcategories: Personal Barriers, Work Inside and Outside the Group, Critical Consciousness Development, Change in Culture, and Ally Development. Strengths and limitations of the study, as well as clinical implications for future interventions designed to eliminate sexism in STEM are discussed.

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