Girls Physics Camps (KonPhys Camps)

The KonPhys-Camps are retreats at the university of Konstanz which offer an insight into physics research for female high school students (12-16 years old) and are part of the program Schülerinnen forschen of the Ministry of Science and Arts (MWK) of the state Baden-Württemberg.

They were supported by SFB 767 until 2015.

The gender pyramid in physics shows a low but rather constant ratio of females in all career steps. The ratio of female first-year students in physics at the university of Konstanz is 19% (academic year 2008/2009) and amounts to roughly 20% to 25% among the doctoral and postdoctoral researchers. The age of 12 to 16 years is particularly critical to maintain the interest of girls in sciences and in technology. This is the starting point of the particular gender equality program of our SFB. In order to further increase the number of women physicists, more girls in the age of school students have to be attracted to start studying physics. It has been shown that one of the reasons for the loss of interest in sciences is lack in lab experience and practical work with technical equipment in comparison to male peers.
In response to this goal, the Department of Physics started in 2008 the Schülerinnen-Forschen program dedicated to girls. This program includes the KonPhys-Camps open to students coming from all over Baden-Württemberg. During the camps the girls carry out hands-on experiments in physics and get informed about a career in natural sciences. The girls are supervised by female students of the various physics programs of our university (Bachelor, Master, teaching degree, doctoral researchers). Many of these students work within the SFB 767. The pedagogical concept of the camps was developed by Prof. Thomas Götz (Chair for Educational Sciences) and Prof. Thomas Dekorsy (Dean of Studies, Department of Physics and member of SFB 767).