CAEE conducted multi-year studies with over 5,400 students at more than 20 universities, and made sure to oversample for gender and race in order to identify ways to increase diversity in engineering. Section 2.9 of this report focuses on “Summarizing Results about Diversity” and shows how female engineering students tend to approach design differently from male students and report less confidence and course preparation to do design. According to this study, mentors were also more likely to influence female students to study engineering than male students.

Download a PDF of the full report from CAEE.


Atman, C. J., Sheppard, S. D., Turns, J., Adams, R. S., Fleming, L. N., Reed, S., Streveler, R. A., Smith, K. A., Miller, R. L., Leifer, L. J., Yasuhara, K., Lund, D. (2010). Enabling Engineering Student Success: The Final Report for the Center for the Advancement of Engineering Education. San Rafael, CA: Morgan & Claypool Publishers. Retrieved from