Doctorates Granted to Women and Minority Group Members

Science  12 Sep 1975:
Vol. 189, Issue 4206, pp. 856-859
DOI: 10.1126/science.189.4206.856


The AAU universities, a prime recruiting ground for new faculty members in selective colleges and research-oriented universities, are significantly increasing the number of doctorates awarded to women and minority members and are decreasing the numbers awarded to majority males. Between 1969-72 and 1972-75, doctorates awarded by AAU universities to majority men declined by 9 percent; to majority women increased by 34 percent; to minority men increased by 61 percent; and to minority women increased by 133 percent.

The field distribution is very uneven. In some fields women with doctorates are fairly numerous, but most of these fields are ones in which women have for long constituted a significant portion of the total. In other fields, notably engineering and some of the physical sciences, it is still difficult to find women with doctorates from the universities in which large numbers of new faculty members receive their graduate education.

Increasing numbers of minority students are earning doctorates in some fields, but in many fields the number is still very low. The several minority groups show quite different patterns of distribution among fields of specialization. The two smaller groups—American Indian and Spanish-origin—are most like the white majority in distribution by fields. Black doctorates are concentrated in education, with relatively few in the sciences. Students of Asian ancestry are heavily concentrated in engineering and the natural sciences.