Women Gaining in Education, But Wage Gap Persists

Federal statistics on advanced education released on Thursday revealed that women are now earning the majority of undergraduate college degrees in traditionally male-dominated fields such as biology and business, as well as in education and the social sciences. Women earned advanced degrees in law and medicine in equal numbers with men, as well. The findings on gender in higher education were part of a yearly compilation of federal statistics. “Title IX has made a tremendous difference and we must ensure it remains strong,” said Sue Klein, EdD, Education Equity Director of the Feminist Majority Foundation.

The rising numbers of women earning college degrees has prompted some allegations that men are suffering from new inequalities in the educational system. Researchers disagree, suggesting that young men may turn away from college because of the availbility of relatively well-paying jobs that do not require a degree. Despite gains in educational achievement, the wage gap has not disappeared, as women continue to earn just 76 percent of men’s wages for full-time work. Women also remain underrepresented at the highest levels of business, medicine, science, and in academia.

LEARN MORE about women in education in “Too Many Women in College?” from the Fall 2005 issue of Ms. magazine.

LEARN MORE about gender equity in education


Associated Press 6/1/06; Statement from Secretary Spellings on the Condition of Education 2006 Report 6/1/06; Feminist Daily News

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