Do women major in philosophy as undergraduates?
I'll supply the figures, but the why's, wherefore's, and solutions to the problem are left to the reader.
Here are figures for the percentage of bachelor's degrees in philosophy earned by women. The source is the Digest of Education Statistics compiled by the U.S. Dept. of Education.
During this 12-year time series, there does not seem to be much change. The average during this period is 31.2% of undergraduate philosophy degrees being earned by women.
Now, to give this figure some perspective, the percentage of women earning bachelor's degrees in all fields has been increasing. In 1985 it was 50.7%, in 1995 it was 54.7%, and in 2005 57.4% of bachelor's degrees were earned by women.
Certainly it is time to have a discussion in the profession about why women are not being recruited to philosophy at the undergraduate level.
Stay tuned for the next installments in this series:
- a comparison with figures in other disciplines; and
- an analysis of our very own shrinking pipeline