2013/2/13 Elena ``of Valhalla'' <[log in to unmask]>: > On 2013-02-12 at 23:34:06 -0200, Leonardo Castro wrote: >> 2013/2/12 Sam Stutter <[log in to unmask]>: >> > Compared to the literature component of my degree (2 guys in a lecture of 50 people), linguistics was quite gender balanced (15 guys in a lecture of 50). >> >> The closer a field of study is to an "exact science", the fewer >> females will be there. This is what should be explained. > > except for mathematics _ , where in my experience the gender balance > is quite natural (~50%), Yes, and it's almost the same proportion in Chemistry as well, in my experience, while Physics, Engineering, Philosophy and Computer Science show a percentage of males over 90%. > but you can see a strong difference > in the further career choices: most females will either remain > in an university environment or will become teachers, males > are the ones who go out doing math in the "real world". I have reall noted that female Physicists are more inclined to educational and pedagogic issues, while men prefer research that doesn't involve understanding people. > > ..  and I believe physics, but I have less experience there. It doesn't match my experience. > > To me it looks more like a matter of socially acceptable career choice > than one related to the exactness of science. It's the only good explanation I see, apart from claims of biological tendencies (which made Lawrence Summers resign as Harvard's president). I don't buy the explanation that there is a higher hostility against females in the scientific environment, unless we consider being in the spotlight of a lot of nerds as "hostility". Besides, I can't see why similar phenomenon didn't happen in Medicine, Law and Architecture, where females are currently the majority of the students in the universities I know. I think that the "prejudice" against females in Engineering and Physics might happen outside the univeristy, not inside it. Actually, when I was a student of a "Data Strucuture" class, once an Engineering female student told us that her father was against her choice because he didn't want her "among a lot of men". > > -- > Elena ``of Valhalla''