Women are the majority (56 percent) of students
enrolled in both undergraduate and graduate institutions and, as a group,
have surpassed men in degree attainment at the associate, bachelor, and
master 's levels.
Adolescent women who like math are more confident about
their appearance than are all adolescent men, whether or not they like
math (and [more] than adolescent women who do not like math). And young
women who like math and science worry less about others liking them.
Math and science have the strongest relationship
on self-esteem for young women, and as they 'learn' that they are
not good at these topics their sense of self-worth and aspirations for
Overall, girls either with or without disabilities had
better school results than boys with and without disabilities. They received
better grades, were more likely to graduate from high school, and were
less likely to get suspended or expelled
Despite better academic performance, girls with disabilities
have less positive post school results than boys with disabilities. Fewer
women than men with disabilities participate in postsecondary education
and training in the years after high school.
A larger percentage of women than men take postsecondary
courses at four-year colleges while a smaller percentage of women enroll
in job training programs and two-year colleges.
In 1999: 11 percent of countries have achieved gender equality
in secondary education enrollment; 51 percent of countries have a lower
enrollment ratio for girls than for boys; 38 percent of countries have
a lower enrollment ratio for boys than girls
Sixty-eight percent of instructors in teacher education
programs spend two hours or less per semester on gender equity.
Overall, females continue to do better than males in reading
and writing. For example, in 1996, male eleventh graders scored 275 on
the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), about the same
as female eighth graders.
Pregnancy and/or parenting are the leading reason girls
give for dropping out of school: 43 percent of female dropouts cite marriage
and/or pregnancy as the reason. Specific factors that seem to influence
females more than males to drop out include having a large number of siblings,
mothers with low levels of formal education, low academic achievement,
and low self-esteem.
Girls have increased the kinds of math and science courses
they take in high school. For example, in 1998, more girls took algebra
II and geometry than in 1990. Taking these courses by the ninth and tenth
grades is seen as a major predictor of a student's continuing to college.
As females progress through school and into college and
graduate school, despite their frequently higher course grades they score
lower on standardized tests than males do and take fewer advanced courses.
They also drop out of mathematics, science, and/or technology earlier than
Women are the majority (56 percent) of students enrolled
in both undergraduate and graduate institutions and, as a group, have surpassed
men in degree attainment at the associate, bachelor, and master's levels.
About 24 percent of the U.S. population 25 years or older
has four years or more of education, that figure is 29 percent for white
males and 24 percent for white females. It is 14 percent for African American
women, 12.5 percent for African American men, 10 percent for Latinas and
11 percent for Latinos. (Data are not available for American Indians.)
The percentage of women earning first professional degrees
has increased dramatically. For example, in dentistry women increased from
less than 10 percent in 1970 to 36 percent in 1996; in medicine women increased
from less than 10 percent in 1970 to 41 percent in 1996; and in law women
increased from less than 10 percent in 1970 to 44 percent in 1996.
Women still lag behind men in earning Ph.D.'s and professional
degrees. In 1996, despite the higher number of women receiving bachelor's
degrees, women were awarded less than half (15,075) of the 33,195 Ph.D.'s
conferred that year.
White women received 12,655 Ph.D.'s (38 percent), compared
with only 78 Ph.D.'s (.02 percent) for American Indian/Alaska Native
women. Similar disparities exist for Latinas, African American, and Asian
American women, who received 1, 3, and 3 percent, respectively, of Ph.D.'s
Women continue to be concentrated in fields that historically
have been dominated by women. In 1996 women earned 75 percent of education
degrees, the same rate as in 1970. In engineering, women went from less
than 1 percent in 1970 to 16 percent in 1996.
Only 16 percent of all women with disabilities are likely
to have any college education, compared with 31 percent of nondisabled
women and 28 percent of men with disabilities. For women with disabilities
who do go on to college, little is known about their specific needs and
how colleges and universities can meet them.
In 1995, women constituted only 35 percent of full-time
higher education faculty, an increase of only 6 percent since 1987.
In 1996, 46 percent of all Hispanic women age 25 and older
had less than a high school diploma. Twenty-seven percent were high school
graduates; 13 percent had some college; 9 percent were college graduates;
and 5 percent had associate degrees.
Of all Hispanic women age 25 and over who were labor force
participants in 1996, 32 percent had less than a high school diploma; 31
percent were high school graduates; 17 percent had some college; 8 percent
had an associate's degree; and the remaining 12 percent were college
In 1996, Hispanic women who had less than a high school
diploma participated at a rate of 38 percent; high school graduates, with
no college, 62.8 percent; and college graduates, 75.6 percent. Hispanic
women with less than a high school diploma had an unemployment rate of
13.4 percent; high school graduates, with no college, 7 percent; and college
graduates, 4.2 percent.
The underrepresentation of women in the sciences is not
simply a function of a failure to attact women to the field, but also,
and perhaps more importantly, a function of that climate. . .
Thirty-four percent of high school aged girls reported
being advised by a faculty member not to take senior math.