A lack of women in science 科學領域缺少女性工作者

A lack of women scientists.

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在科學、工程、科技和數學領域中,男性工作者的數量遠遠超過女性。盡管如此,女性對科學的發展做出過很多巨大的貢獻,在其發展過程中扮演了重要的角色。但為什麼在這些領域工作的女性人數一直不高?女性為什麼不選擇這些職業?本集《隨身英語》討論可能導致科學領域缺少女性工作者的原因。

課文內容

Vocabulary:  woman and work 詞彙: 女性和工作

There’s an old riddle used by psychologists which shows the gender bias people have when it comes to the types of jobs men and women do. Let’s see if you can do it: A father and son are in an accident. The father dies. The surgeon refuses to operate on the injured boy saying, “The boy is my son.” Can you explain?

According to research done in 2012 by Mikaela Wapman and Deborah Belle at the University of Boston, only 14% of those surveyed were able to imagine that a surgeon could be a woman.

Stereotypes about who should do what type of job are mirrored in the makeup of the workforce. For example, the BBC recently reported that only 10% of UK engineers are women. That’s the lowest in Europe, where most other countries put the figure at around 20%. That’s still only a fifth. And it’s not just engineering either. In August 2017, Prof Polly Arnold of Edinburgh University found that only 10% of the top jobs in Scottish science, technology, engineering and mathematics are held by women.

So why is it that women don’t go into scientific jobs? Sophie, a girl from a school in Hertfordshire, England, who studied engineering at secondary school, says, “It starts at a young age… girls are put in a corner with a doll while boys play with trucks and cars.”

There’s also the lack of female role models.  “I don’t think they get as much visibility as they deserve,” says Priyanka Dhopade, one of the Women’s Engineering Society top 50 under-35 women engineers. She says that it would make a huge difference for young girls to have someone to look up to and say ‘I want to be like her.’

Regardless of their lack of visibility, a number of pioneering women have paved the way to amazing discoveries. Let us not forget Marie Curie, whose groundbreaking work made her the first Nobel Prize winner in two different fields: physics and chemistry. There’s Rajaa Cherkaoui El Moursli, who overcame any number of cultural prejudices to play a key role in the discovery of the Higgs-Boson particle. And Soyeon Yi, who became the first South Korean astronaut in 2008, and who hoped her success would inspire more women.

Quite clearly, women have made momentous contributions to science, technology and engineering. If these achievements were more celebrated, it may encourage girls and young women to consider science as their future career. And as more women start to do these jobs, more people might instantly recognise that the surgeon in the riddle is a woman.

詞彙表

gender bias 性別歧視
surgeon 外科醫生
stereotype 成見
makeup of the workforce 勞動力的組成
engineering 工程學
scientific job 與科學有關的工作
female role model 女性的榜樣
visibility 可見性,暴光
look up to 敬重,仰慕
pioneering 先鋒的,前衛的
pave the way 為…創造條件,為…鋪平道路
groundbreaking 具有開創性的,創新的
physics 物理
chemistry 化學
prejudice 偏見,歧視
play a key role 扮演重要的角色,起關鍵的作用
astronaut 航天員

測驗與練習

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. How many people were able to answer correctly the riddle about gender bias?

2. What is the average percentage of women engineers in European countries, not including the UK?

3. True or false? Science owes nothing to women.

4. Which word used in the article means ‘an extremely small part of something’?

5. What did South Korea’s first astronaut hope her success would do?

2. 請在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單字填入句子的空格處。

1. My father has always been my ______. I’ve always wanted to be a chef like him.

stereotype       role-model       look up to       pioneering

2. Who says men can’t be nurses? That’s the biggest ______ I’ve ever heard!

gender bias       prestige       groundbreaking       momentous

3. I’d like to thank my parents, who ______ in me getting this award. I couldn’t have done it without them.

play a key role      plays the key role       played a quay role       played a key role

4. If Emmeline Pankhurst hadn’t ______ for us, I never could have become a politician.

groundbreaking       looked up to       paved the way       inspired

5. I don’t act in a theatre for the money. I do it for the ______.

prestige       pioneering       inspire       groundbreaking

答案

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. How many people were able to correctly answer the riddle about gender bias?
Only 15% of the participants were able to correctly guess the answer.

2. What is the average percentage of women engineers in European countries, not including the UK?
The average percentage of women engineers in European countries other than the UK is 20%.

3. True or false? Science owes nothing to women.
False. But visible or not, science and technology owe a huge amount of prestige to any number of pioneering women who have paved the way to amazing discoveries.

4. Which word used in the article means ‘an extremely small part of something’?
Particle. (Rajaa Cherkaoui El Moursli, who overcame any number of cultural prejudices to play a key role in the discovery of the Higgs-Boson particle.)

5. What did South Korea’s first astronaut hope her success would do?
She hoped her success would inspire women.

2. 請在不參考課文的情況下完成下列練習。選擇一個意思合適的單字填入句子的空格處。

1. My father has always been my role-model. I’ve always wanted to be a chef like him.

2. Who says men can’t be nurses? That’s the biggest gender bias I’ve ever heard!

3. I’d like to thank my parents, who played a key role in me getting this award. I couldn’t have done it without them.

4. If Emmeline Pankhurst hadn’t paved the way for us, I never could have become a politician.

5. I don’t act in a theatre for the money. I do it for the prestige.

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