Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Sexism in Science

Faculty may prefer female applicants for STEM professorships

To conduct this study, researchers surveyed a total of 873 tenure-track faculty members from 371 colleges and universities. Surveys were distributed via e-mail, with a response rate of approximately 34 percent. Participants were current faculty members in the fields of biology, engineering, economics, and psychology.

Participants were asked to make selections between identically qualified male and female applicants with matching lifestyles. Six lifestyles conditions were studied: being single without children, married without children, married with children and a stay-at-home spouse, married with children and spouse working outside the home, married with children and the spouse working inside the home, and divorced with children. The children in each situation were described as two preschoolers.

A randomized stratified sampling procedure revealed a strong preference for female applicants over male applicants This preference was present in institutions of all sizes, across all four fields and across participant genders; the sole exception was male economists, who showed no significant preference for either gender. Overall, when the data were pooled, female applicants were preferred by 67.3 percent of the faculty, which represented a two-to-one preference for female applicants.

This finding held true for applications with narrative summaries of work history, and for applications with formal CVs. Though six types of lifestyles were examined, no lifestyle effects were found. These findings also held constant even when participants were asked to simply numerically evaluate potential candidates instead of comparing them.
Seems about right to me. Women want more women in their fields, and men are deathly afraid to oppose them for any reason, lest they be accused of bias.

Wombat-socho is celebrating Rule 5 Sunday with "Rule 5 Monday: Lt. Commander Rand, RIP" at the other McCain.

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