ADVANCE-Purdue and the Center for Faculty Success A Department within the Division of Diversity and Inclusion

Improving Resources

ADVANCE-Purdue has two main research studies associated with improving the organizational infrastructure to support the success of faculty in STEM at Purdue.  

Through the Academic Career Pathway study, we aim to determine how to model the academic careers of women faculty members in general (and women faculty of all ethnicities in the STEM disciplines of Purdue University in particular). Additionally the group also examines how the career-based experiences of women faculty members vary by race and ethnicity. Our research question is, What are the academic career pathways of women faculty in STEM disciplines at Purdue, beginning from their point of hire, and how do they vary by ethnicity? How might a boundary theory explain STEM faculty members’ career experiences (particularly focusing on minority women faculty) that are not explained by pipeline or chilly climate theories? The group conducts the ACP study through oral history and action research methods as two primary investigative tools. 

The Institutional Ethnography investigates the influences of institutionally created policies (embodied in policy documents and texts) on the lived experiences of STEM faculty members (particularly women of color) with regards to their retention and success. The research group uses in-depth interviews, critical exploration of documents and texts (specifically the promotion and tenure document and the parental leave policy implemented in November 2008), and participant observation methods to explore our research questions.

For more information on ADVANCE-Purdue Research Director Professor Alice Pawley's Research in Feminist Engineering (RIFE) group, see

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