Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Chart of the Day: Medical School Graduates

The chart above displays the gender breakdown for medical school graduates back to 1961 (data here), showing the dramatic shift over time towards gender equality. In 1961, men outnumbered women by more than 17 to 1 (94.5% to 5.5%), and by 2006 it was almost evenly split between male and female graduates (51.3% male vs. 48.7% female for 2009).


At 11/24/2009 7:13 PM, Blogger KO said...

That is a very striking kink in the graphs. So either things were sexist up until recently and now the composition roughly matches the general population, or the admissions offices are capping female enrollment.

Wonder if anyone has studied the relative qualifications of the gender pools to check for bias?

At 11/24/2009 7:51 PM, Anonymous American Delight said...

Oh, I'm not so sure it's a sign of growing equity. That graph is going to like like an X where the ladies outnumber the men.

I suspect medicine will become like teaching--a field once dominated by men but now almost completely reversed.

Among the sciences, more and more women are choosing to go into the medical field while the men are opting for lab work.

Also, an increasing number of young male patients would prefer to be treated by a female doctor. I guess they don't want to drop their pants or have their testicles checked by a dude...

At 11/24/2009 7:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see specialities received. I've read that women migrate toward non-oncall professions such as dermatology and the like, in order to have family time. If so, we may soon see a shortage of "on-call" professions.

At 3/10/2010 3:01 PM, Anonymous Christina said...

I think the increase is in part to womens lib and it becoming more acceptable for a woman to continue education as opposed to getting married and becoming a full time homemaker after high school.

I don't think women are always going to gravitate towards steady positions as opposed to on-call though. There are, I'm sure, plenty of men who are equally as likely to want a more stable position as women who want something more flexible.


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