Analyzing Enrollment in Information & Communication Technology Programs and Use of Social Networks Based on Gender.
Abstract: This paper aims to analyze the gender dependence in the enrollment in the bachelor’s or equivalent levels, with a strong focus on the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) field. The study is carried out with 12 nations included in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The relationships with certain socioeconomic factors (such as unemployment rate, government budget allocations for Research and Development (R&D), better life index, annual wages per full-time, score in the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA report), educational attainment, student skills, Gender Inequality Index, etc.) and other indicators related to the use of ICT are studied. Information was retrieved from the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) website and from the United Nations Development Program Human Development Reports, which was elaborated in the context of the United Nations Development Programme. A statistical analysis of the enrollment and its relationships with other socio-economic and ICT variables is carried out. In order to perform the analysis, various software programs, in R programming language, were implemented. Gender dependence on the use of the Twitter and Instagram networks is also examined, in order to check whether the interactions relating to particular topics present a similar pattern to those observed in the enrollment, per field of study. For the realization of this study, several software programs were developed in Python. The implementation of these programs followed a waterfall life cycle, including requirements definition, physical implementation and testing activities. Some of the conclusions point out that there is no relationship between the number of students enrolled in ICT programs and the average score obtained by the 15-year-old students in the PISA report 2018. This research shows that countries with strong investment in research and development (Ireland, Poland, New Zealand) have a higher number of women studying ICT programs. The frequency indicators related to the use of technological and digital resources (the use of Internet daily or almost every day (%), the use of a computer (%), downloading and installing of software from the Internet (%), the creation of a web page (%), the installation or replacement of an operating system (%)) do not show significant differences between the sexes. Twitter and Instagram show a significant gender dependence, according to the topic addressed, but the pattern observed is not the same as that detected in enrollment by field of study. Research findings can help to gain a deeper understanding of the situation of women’s enrolment in ICT programs, while some suggestions can also be made for the development of educational and social policies, with the intention of increasing women’s participation in these programs.
Universal identifier: http://hdl.handle.net/10641/2712
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