The Large Gender Gap in Higher Education Enrollments Narrowed Slightly This Fall

A new report from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center finds that enrollments at U.S. colleges and universities are down by 1.1 percent this fall. This follows far greater declines in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

Enrollments of women in undergraduate programs are down 2.1 percent, compared to a decline of 0.7 percent for men. Since the start of the pandemic, the enrollments of women in undergraduate programs are down 5.6 percent compared to a decline for men of 3.8 percent.

Women’s enrollments are down in four-year, public and private colleges and universities and in community colleges. Enrollments of men in community colleges are up slightly this fall.

Women’s enrollments in graduate programs are down 1.9 percent this year. For men, graduate enrollments are down 1.1 percent. Since 2020, graduate enrollments for both men and women are up 0.8 percent. This year, the enrollments of women in graduate programs in STEM fields are up but they have declined at the undergraduate level.

Graduate enrollments of White women are down 4.5 percent this fall. The graduate enrollments of Black and Native American women are also down. But graduate enrollments of Latinas and Asian American women are up this year and are up significantly since 2020.

Filed Under: EnrollmentsGender GapResearch/Study

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