A Social Psychological Perspective
Chapter 9. Career Choice
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In the previous chapters, we have elucidated many theories and findings related to gender at work, and each chapter mirrored different theoretical topics and stances that can be applied to many practical questions. From here, the book is structured differently. Chapters 9 to 14 are organized around practical questions, situations, and topics. All of the previously elaborated theories and findings that are relevant are applied to these situations, with respective recommendations and interventions being deduced. Information from previous chapters is summarized and several chapters review topics that have not been addressed. We begin with career choice.
The choice of a specific major, and subsequently, career, appears to be a highly gendered matter. Very few occupations are chosen by similar numbers of women and men. Conversely, there are many in which we find hardly any women and others in which hardly any men are present. We focus here on two specific domains in which there is a lack of women: STEM fields and entrepreneurship. Before we do so, what can we conclude from the theoretical perspectives?
One cannot think about career choice without starting with gender stereotypes. We concluded earlier that gender stereotypes have a profound influence on individuals’ interests, their development of abilities, and the relevant ← 113 | 114 → self-concepts. Similar to the lack of fit model that describes how we arrive at the conclusion that another person fits a certain job, people wonder how far their interests and abilities match their...
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