Coming into Her Own: Educational Success in Girls and Women


It was more than thirty years ago that significant gender bias in North America's schools and universities was first brought to light-a bias that prevented the full and equal development of girls' and women's potential in educational programs. Since the discoveries of that time, myriad improvements have compressed the enormous gender gap in education. Fundamental to our educational system is ensuring that the gap continues to narrow. Coming Into Her Own examines the progress in girls' and women's educational experiences since the 1960s and attempts to answer the question: What are optimal educational environments for girls and women? Written by experts in the fields of education, psychology, and women's studies, this comprehensive collection examines how classroom environments, social climates, teacher-student relationships, and the differing contexts of co-ed and single-sex institutions can influence girls' and women's educational success. This much-needed book also offers a range of approaches, models, and innovative strategies-such as those that emphasize mentoring and challenging educational cultures-that can profoundly transform school and campus climates to optimize educational experience. Characterized by an intention to better meet the diverse needs of students of different races, ethnicities, classes, ages, and sexual orientations, the strategies recommended in Coming Into Her Own aim to create environments that are open to all students. This enlightening and uplifting book is well-grounded in research, exploring a wealth of issues including the masculine nature of schools; violence against women and lesbian, gay, and bisexual students; alcohol abuse and associated health risks; and the current backlash against feminism and women's studies. Coming Into Her Own is filled with illustrative examples that describe actual situations and provide easily adaptable approaches to resolving current dilemmas in education. It reaches beyond the classroom and offers programs that can enhance the student's whole life experience. Promote Excellence in Girls' and Women's Education Written by experts in the fields of education, psychology, and women's studies, Coming Into Her Own offers innovative strategies and a range of approaches and models for optimizing the educational experiences of girls and women."This book is a source of information and inspiration. . . . All educational institutions need to be women-centered-both in their approach to how they teach and in the content of what they teach. I recommend this book to anyone who thinks there is nothing new under the sun in the area of educational reform. It provokes ideas about our educational structures that are full of promise for the future."_Janet L. Holmgren, president, Mills College"This is a much-needed book that translates theoretical knowledge about gender equity in education into practical strategies. It promises to be useful not only for improving the teaching and learning environments for women but for all students because everyone benefits from efforts to reform the learning environment in the classroom and on the broader campus. The strategies outlined in this important book should be implemented throughout higher education."_Bernice Sandler, coauthor of the Chilly Climate reports"Recognizing and acting on the value of women to the total society is paramount for higher education. This important book offers practical advice to those who wish to assure that women hold their rightful place with men in determining our collective future."_Donna Shavlik, former director, Office of Women in Higher Education, American Council on Education

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • Sara N. Davis
  • Mary Crawford
  • Jadwiga Sebrechts
  • Judith Giblin James
  • Ellen Kimmel
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • San Francisco
Publication year:
  • 1999


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