Does Educational Research Authored by Women Have More Impact Than Male-Authored Research?

Dr. Mike Thelwall, professor of data science at the University of Wolverhampton in the United Kingdom, has investigated whether research where a woman is the first author has a great impact in education than research where a man is the first author. According to the research, women are more likely to be in teaching-related roles in some countries, including the United States, which might make articles led by a woman researcher more attractive to students. However, articles written by women are less often to be accessed by professional and senior academic readers.

The results of Dr. Thelwall’s study provided evidence that research where a woman is the lead author is more likely to be read by undergraduates, master’s degree students, and junior researchers than male-authored research within the same narrow subject field. The paper states that “the findings raise the possibility that female-authored research had, on average, a greater non-research impact within education,” and that there is a possibility “that female-authored research has more overall impact than male-authored research.” The researchers believe because of this conclusion, citation-based evaluations of woman researchers might undervalue the impact of their work.

The full study, “Does Female-Authored Research Have More Educational Impact Than Male-Authored Research? Evidence from Mendeley,” was published in the Journal of Altmetrics. It may be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/Study

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