Where blokes are, and aren’t on campus

Male undergrads are not just a minority on campus (42 per cent), they are under-represented in seven out of ten discipline areas. But when they are in a majority, it’s a big one.

Frank Larkins looks at where the blokes aren’t in a new report in his L H Martin series on the state of Australian higher education.

Women were especially dominant in three broad fields in 2016, society and culture (F-139 000, M- 75 000), health (F-116 000, M-41 000) and education (M-59 000, M-18 000). In the physical sciences, business and agriculture the gender split is nowhere near as pronounced.

However males dominate in IT (M-22 000, F 3000), and engineering (M-48 000, F-8000).  The pattern across the discipline groups is much the same for postgrads.

As to a reason for the overall under-representation of males in higher education Professor Larkins points to more males in VET but also suggests; “the underachievement by males in schools needs attention before we can expect any significant increase in male participation in universities.”


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