Improving Gender Equality in Education

Improving Gender Equality in Education
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  • 0:01 Gender & Education
  • 1:02 Title IX
  • 2:19 Inequality
  • 3:43 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Natalie Boyd

Natalie is a teacher and holds an MA in English Education and is in progress on her PhD in psychology.

A person's gender can influence the way they experience the educational system. Watch this lesson to find out more about improving gender equality in education, including the impact that Title IX had on gender equality.

Gender & Education

Annie is worried. She really loves math and science, but as she's gotten older, she's noticed that many other girls have started taking fewer math and science courses. Instead, they are focusing on things like English and history.

A person's gender, or whether a person is male or female, has an effect on many areas of their life, including education. For many years, women have faced inequality in education.

Annie is aware of this. Her mother didn't go to college, and her grandmother didn't even finish high school. Back then, women just weren't educated as much as boys.

Annie is planning on going to the same college that her brothers go to, so she figures that inequality in education is a thing of the past. But is she right? Or are there still problems with gender equity in education?

Let's look closer at some of the positive strides that have been made in education, including the passing of Title IX in the 1970s, and some of the areas where gender inequality is still a problem.

Title IX

Annie's grandmother didn't finish high school, and her mother didn't go to college. Gender equality used to be a big problem in American education because women weren't encouraged to get a high level of education. In fact, in some instances, they were actively discouraged from getting an education!

A major step forward for women in education was the passage of Title IX, a groundbreaking law intended to end gender discrimination in education. Title IX is most famous for requiring that schools offer girls equal opportunities in sports, but there was a lot more to it than that.

Title IX also made sexual assault and violence on school campuses a focus and required that schools take certain steps to prevent and address sexual violence. In addition, it made it illegal for schools to discriminate against pregnant students.

Since Title IX was passed in 1972, there have been many great things that have occurred in education. Look at Annie: she's planning on attending college in the same place her brothers attend. This was less likely before Title IX. Since it was passed, though, the number of women getting college degrees has increased dramatically, and today, women account for more than half of the bachelor's degrees conferred nationwide.

Inequality

But there are still some areas where things aren't quite equal. Remember that Annie likes math and science but has noticed that her higher-level math and science classes are populated with mostly boys. She feels very left out!

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