Professional Self-Perception in the School STEM Sector. Biography and Technology in Gender and Generational Contexts (ProMINT)

The qualitative research project funded by the HMWK aims to investigate pedagogical practice in the STEM sector (mathematics, informatics, natural science, technology) in vocational schools. The theoretical background assumption is that the determination of the relationship between (professional) biography and technology, i.e., the question of how science and technology are constituted as a component of teachers' personal self-concept, is of central importance for both teaching competence and school learning and socialization processes. Accordingly, the research project aims to examine the professional biographical identity constructions and associated pedagogical gender knowledge of female teachers in STEM subjects. The focus will be set on the occupational biographical examination of gender and power differences as well as the design of technology-related specific teaching practices.

The project was developed in cooperation with the Max-Eyth-Schule, a technical vocational school in Kassel, which offers training in STEM subjects at various types of schools (vocational school, vocational preparation year, basic vocational training year, technical secondary school, vocational high school) and has already initiated a number of projects with the aim of attracting more young women to the STEM field (e.g., participation in the annual Girls Day). As part of the project, nine career biographical interviews were conducted, transcribed and analyzed. A professional biographical focus made it possible to examine the respective professional self-perceptions and their differences in terms of the respective length of professional experience as well as membership in certain generations of teacher cohorts. It was found that with regard to the dimension of professional experience and the associated self-image as a STEM teacher, it wasnt the length of professional activity as a teacher that was important, but rather the question of the quantity and quality of the pedagogical training.