female/male ratio

Bharathi Jagadeesh bjag at cog.nimh.nih.gov
Thu Apr 27 07:30:05 EST 1995

Hannah Dvorak (DvorakH at starbase1.caltech.edu) wrote:
: In article <hmcarv-2404951521500001 at macmedic.fm.ul.pt>, hmcarv at fm.ul.pt wrote:

: > Hi everybody
: > I'm writing from Portugal and I would like to ask for your experience in
: > the following subject:
: > In Portugal the percentage of female students at Universities is
: > overcoming that of male students - females are now over 60% of the
: > students. Certain courses, like medicine follow this percentage well.
: > Still, there are very big differences between other disciplines - some
: > areas like electronics or physics have a very low percentage of females
: > (like 10 or 20%) whereas in others like Biology they can make about 80% of
: > the students. Does this occur in your countries too? What are your
: > thoughts and ideas about it?
: > In science, women are also starting to predominate. The number of female
: > scientists is also overcoming that of male scientists, at least in the
: > area of biological sciences. All you have to do is to visit a lab to see
: > that this is true. Still, when it comes to positions, especially leading
: > ones, most are held by men. I don't know if there is an age effect here,
: > since this change is still somewhat recent, and in the generation before
: > the one graduating now, most of these percentages would not be true.
: > 
: > Note: these numbers are aproximate.   
: > 
: > Any coments?

: I don't have any terribly reliable numbers on hand, but here's what I've
: seen around me.  At Queen's University in Canada, where I was an
: undergrad, the overall ratio was slightly skewed towards women, though it
: varied from discipline to discipline.  For example, the ratio in
: psychology was about 80% women, in biology about 60% women, but in
: engineering only about 25% women.  And in my year only one woman graduated
: in physics!  I think arts and humanities had slightly more women than men.

: Here at Caltech the overall ratio is very skewed: about 3 or 4 men for
: every woman among the undergrads.  Most undergrads are majoring in
: engineering, and there are no arts or humanities majors offered.  At the
: graduate student level, it's about 50-50 in my field, biology.  However,
: in engineering, it seems to be about 75% men.  The ratios are similar at
: the postdoc level.  At the professorial level, we have 5 tenured women and
: 23 tenured men in biology.

: - Hannah

: -- 
: Hannah Dvorak                           |
: DvorakH at starbase1.caltech.edu           |
: Division of Biology 156-29              | Ceci n'est pas un .sig.
: California Institute of Technology      |
: Pasadena, CA 91125                      |

Bharathi Jagadeesh/bjag at ln.nimh.nih.gov

Lab of Neuropsychology
Building 49, Room 1b80
Bethesda, Maryland 20892

(312) 496-5625 x270

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