Gender and schooling in Kazakhstan: A mixed methods study

Project: FDCRGP

Project Details

Grant Program

Faculty Development Competitive Research Grant Program 2019-2021

Project Description

Gender equality is an important goal in the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030 and the Government of Kazakhstan is committed to achieving its gender equality targets including reducing stereotypes in education and employment and combating violence against women. While Kazakhstan has achieved gender parity in access to schooling, the choice of subjects beyond compulsory education, occupational distribution and labour market outcomes show a gendered pattern. In addition, high-levels of gender-based violence are reported. All these phenomena are linked to dominant gender norms and power relations. However, gender norms are amenable to change and education is the best institution to support the transformation of gendered norms. This mixed methods study is the first of its kind to investigate the relationship between gender and schooling in Kazakhstan focusing on the curriculum and textbooks, teachers’ discourse and perspectives, institutional structures and leadership and students’ practices and perspectives. The aim is to identify recommendations to enhance gender equality in and through education in Kazakhstan and develop strategies to improve the participation of females across all subjects, especially within traditionally male-dominated Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. The study begins with qualitative case-studies of 9 schools in three contrasting regions, leading to useful findings and the development of a contextually grounded questionnaire for school leadership, teachers and students. These are administered in 24 schools in six regions. The two data sets are then merged to produce authoritative, in-depth and triangulated findings to develop a nuanced and contextually grounded understanding of gender and education in the country. The involvement of stakeholders is integral to the design of the study for ensuring the project’s educational, economic and societal impacts.
Effective start/end date1/31/1912/31/22


  • Gender
  • STEM
  • Sociology
  • Employability
  • Education


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