The researchers discovered that women outnumber men in only three fields of science: Psychology (about 78 percent female), Bioscience (57 percent), and Social Science (54 percent). From 1991 to 2010, women in these fields increased by about five, 10, and six percentage points, respectively. Women have also made some progress in Physical Science by nearly 10 percentage points, but men still dominate this career path. Ladies make up only 41 percent of the field.
But women seem the most dispassionate about math, computer science, and engineering careers these days. In fact, nearly a decade ago, women were more involved in math and computer science than they are today. About 48 percent of women received a degree in the mathematics field in 1991 — in 2010, that number dropped to 42 percent. Thirty percent of women held computer science degrees in 1991. Now data shows that number plummeted to 18.2 percent.
Women entering the engineering field has only increased by a puny three percentage points over 10 years! Despite a decline in four-year engineering degrees, the study notes that women have made progress in earning post-graduate engineering degrees — but only slightly.
Focusing on just minority women, the NSF discovered that Black, Hispanic and Native American ladies who have a bachelor’s degree in STEM increased from about 3.5 percent to 11 percent while Master’s jumped from about six percent to eight percent. Again, the gains are slight and translates into the face of STEM’s workforce, which is mostly white and male. More than half of all scientists and engineers are white men; 18 percent are white women, three percent are black men and two percent are black women.