The Kenneth Mark Drain Chair in Ethics at Trent University

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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Gender Gap in Undergrad Philosophy: Quantified

I'm happy to get the PhilPapers update that the Paxton et al research on the gender gap in philosophy is out in print!  This is the source of the current understanding that there is an "intro-major cliff" for women in higher education who take philosophy.

Molly Paxton, Carrie Figdor & Valerie Tiberius (2012). Quantifying the Gender Gap: An Empirical Study of the Underrepresentation of Women in Philosophy. Hypatia 27 (2):n/a-n/a.
The lack of gender parity in philosophy has garnered serious attention recently. Previous empirical work that aims to quantify what has come to be called “the gender gap” in philosophy focuses mainly on the absence of women in philosophy faculty and graduate programs. Our study looks at gender representation in philosophy among undergraduate students, undergraduate majors, graduate students, and faculty. Our findings are consistent with what other studies have found about women faculty in philosophy, but we were able to add two pieces of new information. First, the biggest drop in the proportion of women in philosophy occurs between students enrolled in introductory philosophy classes and philosophy majors. Second, this drop is mitigated by the presence of more women philosophy faculty.

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