Gender Distribution of Degrees in Philosophy


From 1987 to 2014, the proportion of women earning degrees in philosophy was substantially lower than that for the humanities field as a whole. The share of women earning bachelors and master’s degrees fell over that time span, while the share earning doctoral degrees increased modestly (though it showed some decline in recent years).

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* Degree shares do not include second majors.

Source: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). The IPEDS data were accessed and analyzed via the National Science Foundation’s online science and engineering resources data system, WebCASPAR.

See the Note on Data Used to Calculate Discipline-Specific Degree Counts and Shares, the Note on the Data Used to Calculate Humanities Degree Counts and Shares, the Note on the Definition of Advanced Degrees, and the Degree Program Code Catalog for an inventory of the specific degree programs included by the Humanities Indicators under the heading of “Philosophy.” Unlike the other disciplines profiled in the Humanities Indicators, for which basic degree completion data are available going back to 1966, counts of philosophy degrees are available only from 1987 onward. (Until the late 1980s, philosophy degrees were combined by the National Center for Education Statistics, the collector of these data, with those conferred in religious studies.)

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