Women are more educated

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An often repeated claim in the mainstream media is that women are more educated than men in Western countries today. There are two significant flaws in this argument.

Formal Schooling

This argument merely measures education in terms of years of formal schooling. This implicitly values all years of formal schooling as equally valuable. This is erroneous as a year in engineering is worth more to the individual and to society than a year of gender studies.

Informal Schooling

This argument also ignores informal education which is extremely valuable in life. There is evidence that men are increasingly eschewing formal education in favour of informal education. This can be see in information technology where the majority of training occurs informally on the job.

Research conducted by the London School of Economic's Centre for Economic Performance and elsewhere found that female teachers tend to mark down male students.[1] The research went on to show that male students recognise this and tend to put less effort in for female teachers, recognising that they will be subject to discrimination. In contrast female students tend to put in more effort for male teachers despite male teachers marking students fairly regardless of gender.[2][3]

Follow up research by the OECD confirmed these results across 60 countries.[4][5] Research carried out at MIT also confirmed that female teachers tend to mark boys down but male teachers tend to mark fairly across genders.[6][7]

Some researchers claim that this is a result of boys being more disruptive in class and female teachers tending to academically mark down students as a result of disruptive behaviour.

Some research suggests that boys tend to do better when assessed by exam and girls tend to do better when assessed by course work.[8][9][10][11] This may be partly a result of a tendency for boys to engage in risky behaviour.[12][13]