Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. Gabriel Reich

Second Advisor

Dr. Ross Collin

Third Advisor

Dr. Jesse Senechal

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Mardi Schmeichel


While several scholars have worked to reimagine social studies curriculum from a feminist perspective, there are few studies that look at how teachers understand and experience gender equity work (Bohan, 2017; Engebretson, 2018). This study seeks to bridge that gap between theory and practice in order to progress toward a more gender-equitable social studies education. Utilizing a hermeneutic circle design to facilitate dialogue across participants, I conducted one-on-one, semi-structured interviews with seven secondary social studies teacher participants and collected participant-provided curriculum materials. Using techniques from constructivist grounded theory, I analyzed how teachers made sense of their experiences trying to include and promote women’s history, gender, and feminism in their practice. This analysis resulted in the development and exploration of three approaches to gender equity work: angling, exposing lightly, and avoiding. I discuss the implications of each of those approaches for work on gender and social studies education and also reflect on certain teacher considerations that complicated curriculum and instructional decision-making regarding how to do the work of gender equity in the classroom.


© Kimberly Rose Bowman

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission