Conscious Efforts to End Unconscious Bias: Why Women Leave Academic Research

By Easterly, Debra M.; Ricard, Cynthia S. | Journal of Research Administration, Spring 2011 | Go to article overview

Conscious Efforts to End Unconscious Bias: Why Women Leave Academic Research


Easterly, Debra M., Ricard, Cynthia S., Journal of Research Administration


Introduction

...As profound as the transformation of America's consciousness has been during the past 150 years, hidden assumptions about sex and gender remain embedded in cultural discourses, social institutions, and individual psyches that invisibly and systemically reproduce male power in generation after generation. I call these assumptions the lenses of gender. Not only do these lenses shape how people perceive, conceive, and discuss social reality, but because they are embedded in social institutions, they also shape the more material things--like unequal pay and inadequate day care--that constitute social reality itself. The purpose of this book is to render those lenses visible rather than invisible, to enable us to look at the culture's gender lenses rather than through them... (p. 1)

Sandra L Bem (1993). The lenses of gender: Transforming the debate on sexual inequality. New Haven: Yale University Press.

The education and empowerment of women throughout the world cannot fail to result in a more caring, tolerant, just and peaceful life for all.

Aung San Suu Kyi, Burmese-Myanmarese dissident and politician; Leader of National League for Democracy, Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

Despite many years of work to minimize gender bias in the workplace, women researchers often "disappear" alter about a decade in academia. This phenomenon continues to occur despite near parity of applicants, matriculating students and graduates in American medical schools (AAMC, 2008), and (beginning in 2000) nearly equal numbers of men and women earning science and engineering bachelor's degrees (NSF, 2007). This disappearance happens despite the fact that in 2006 women earned almost half (45%) the doctorates in the science and engineering fields (NSF 2009), and nearly the same as men in the natural sciences (Handelsman et al., 2005). This increase has continued since 2006 and is true today (NSF. 2010). The increased number of female students and doctoral recipients directly correlates with the number of women who serve as faculty in institutions of higher education, albeit at certain ranks and at certain types of institutions. Although the number of female assistant professors--and, in some disciplines, associate professors--is becoming equal to that of men, women are not attaining full professorships or upper administrative positions as often as men (Touchton, 2008). Why is this happening? This paper will review women's departure from academia and offer ways to re-attract them.

The Problem

Women are Leaving Academic Research

According to a recent report from the National Science Foundation, "growth in the number of female doctorate recipients (6.9%) was greater than growth in male doctorate recipients (6.2%)" (Falkenheim & Fiegener, 2008). Between 1979 and 2005, the percentage of master's degrees earned by women increased from 49% to 59%; during the same time period, the percentage of doctoral degrees awarded rose from 30% to 49% (NCES, 2007). In 2008-09 women for the first time were awarded a greater percentage of doctoral degrees (50.4%) than men (Bell, 2010).

The National Study of Postsecondary Faculty (NCES, 2007) found that in 2004, 57.5% of the faculty and instructional staff were male and 42.5% were female. Males accounted for 13.6% of full professors, 8.6% of associate professors, and 8.1% of assistant professors; figures for females were 4.4%, 4.9%, and 6.6%, respectively (remaining percentages were divided among instructors, lecturers, and those with no rank). According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES, 2000), in 1997 16% of female faculty at degree-granting institutions had attained the rank of professor, a number that by 2005 had decreased to 15%. White (2005) examined the status and ranks of women at several research universities and confirmed that the number of female professors bad not increased from 2000 to 2005. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Conscious Efforts to End Unconscious Bias: Why Women Leave Academic Research
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.