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Schülerinnen on Tour

Women are significantly underrepresented in the student body (beginning in the first semester) in physics compared to chemistry or mathematics. This is undoubtedly an effect of gender stereotypes as well as false conceptions and expectations of what is necessary for successfully studying a scientific subject. The necessity for early-on action in schools is described in several studies, which find that initially the interest of pupils in the sciences, and particularly physics, is not gender specific. However, from about 14 years of age on, girls’ interest decreases. To prevent this loss and stereotype-based thinking, the CRC 951 aims to dismantle gender stereotypes, beginning at the school level. It is hoped that the potential impact of the CRC’s research on everyday life will spark the interest of female pupils for a career in physics, chemistry, engineering, or the sciences in general. The interdisciplinary character of the CRC allows them to offer a variety of scientific programmes for female pupils of all ages.

One such programme is Schülerinnen on Tour. This event was established in 2018 as an ancillary event of the “Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften” in collaboration with other scientific institutions in Berlin-Adlershof. Female pupils from grades 10 to 12 receive an exclusive guided tour during which they visit various laboratories in the Berlin-Adlershof science park. The scientists (mostly women as well) show the pupils which exciting professional prospects the natural sciences have to offer and which prerequisites are important for successfully mastering STEM subjects. In 2018 the CRC 951 contributed with an interactive tour of the electron microscopy labs, where the pupils were able to examine the microscopic structure of various samples, including hybrid inorganic/organic materials, providing insight into the current research of the CRC. In 2019 the pupils visited the optical characterisation lab, where lasers are being used to study the electro-optical response of our samples. The next Schülerinnen on Tour is scheduled for 5 June 2021.

More information about the programme is available here.

Photo: Nadine Weber. Group of female pupils visiting the TEM lab in CRC 951, June 2018.
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