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written by Sonja Cwik
Student grades and motivational outcomes in introductory physics courses can influence their retention in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines and future career aspirations. In recent years, many research studies have focused on inequities in calculus-based introductory physics courses, e.g., by investigating gender differences in students' motivational beliefs such as self-efficacy, interest, and identity and how they change from the beginning to the end of a physics course or course sequence. However, these issues have not been investigated in introductory physics courses for bioscience majors, in which women outnumber men. Although women outnumber men in these courses, societal stereotypes and biases about who can do and excel in physics may impact women in these courses unless there is an intentional effort to create equitable and inclusive learning environments. In this dissertation I address the question of equity in introductory physics courses for students on the bioscience track by investigating the relationship between gender, motivational beliefs, and physics performance. Through my quantitative studies, I first analyzed gender differences in students' self-efficacy, sense of belonging, and recognition by others and how they predict course grade. Then, I investigated whether the relation between gender and physics identity was mediated by students' self-efficacy, interest, and recognition by others. Lastly, I investigated how students' perception of the inclusiveness of the learning environment including students' sense of belonging, interactions with their peers, and recognition by instructors and TAs predicts their physics identity and grades in the introductory physics courses. These findings can be invaluable for instructors striving to make these courses more equitable and inclusive. Throughout the thesis, there is discussion of how these findings can provide guidelines to improve women's experiences and achievement.
University: University of Pittsburgh
Academic Department:  Physics and Astronomy
Pages 369
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- General
Education Foundations
- Assessment
= Self Assessment
- Sample Population
= Gender
- Societal Issues
= Gender Issues
- Student Characteristics
= Affect
Other Sciences
- Life Sciences
- Lower Undergraduate
- Upper Undergraduate
- Reference Material
= Thesis/Dissertation
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© 2022 Cwik, Sonja
Type:
Ph.D.
Keywords:
belongingness, inclusivity, motivational beliefs, physics identity, self-efficacy
Record Creator:
Metadata instance created March 1, 2023 by Sonja Cwik
Record Updated:
March 6, 2023 by Caroline Hall
Last Update
when Cataloged:
September 30, 2022
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Record Link
AIP Format
S. Cwik, , Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2022, WWW Document, (http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/).
AJP/PRST-PER
S. Cwik, Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2022, <http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/>.
APA Format
Cwik, S. (2022, September 30). Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2022). Retrieved March 28, 2023, from http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/
Chicago Format
Cwik, Sonja. "Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors." Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh, 2022. http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/ (accessed 28 March 2023).
MLA Format
Cwik, Sonja. "Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors." Ph.D.. 30 Sep. 2022. University of Pittsburgh, 2022. 28 Mar. 2023 <http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/>.
BibTeX Export Format
@phdthesis{ Author = "Sonja Cwik", Title = {Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors}, School = {University of Pittsburgh}, Type = {Ph.D.}, Month = {September}, Year = {2022} }
Refer Export Format

%A Sonja Cwik %T Investigating Gender Differences in Students' Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors %R Ph.D. %D September 30, 2022 %P 369 %I University of Pittsburgh %U http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/ %O Physics and Astronomy %O application/pdf %O Ph.D.

EndNote Export Format

%0 Thesis %A Cwik, Sonja %D September 30, 2022 %T Investigating Gender Differences in Students' Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors %B Physics and Astronomy %I University of Pittsburgh %P 369 %8 September 30, 2022 %9 Ph.D. %U http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/43241/


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Investigating Gender Differences in Students’ Motivational Beliefs and Inclusiveness of the Learning Environment in Introductory Physics Courses for Bioscience Majors:

Is By The Same Author and Covers a Similar Topic As Gender differences in students’ self-efficacy in introductory physics courses in which women outnumber men predict their grade

Journal article in Physics Review PER covering the same topic, by the same authors.

relation by Caroline Hall
Is By The Same Author and Covers a Similar Topic As Damage caused by societal stereotypes: Women have lower physics self-efficacy controlling for grade even in courses in which they outnumber men

Journal article in Physics Review PER covering the same topic, by the same authors.

relation by Caroline Hall

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