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Women and Minority Faculty Members

Women faculty members continue to earn less than men faculty in all but one sector: private AA institutions. The greatest disparity continues to be at doctoral universities, where women’s salaries are 80 percent and 77 percent of men’s salaries, respectively, at public and private institutions (Table 2); this has been the case for the last several years. Some progress has been made over the past six years in most sectors, and female faculty members at community and baccalaureate colleges continue to show smaller salary differences.

The Number of Women Faculty Continues to Increase

Despite women’s salaries making little headway, the number of full-time women faculty at public institutions has increased by 87 percent since 1989–90, while the number of men increased by not even 9 percent (Table 3). The share of women working full time at private institutions has also increased dramatically during this time period—by 68 percent. Doctoral universities and community colleges have seen a net increase in women faculty of 157 and 61 percent, respectively. Women account for 84 percent of the increase in the number of teaching faculty over the past 18 years.

Minority Faculty Underrepresented

As has been the case over the last several years, minority faculty members continue to be underrepresented at public and private colleges and universities (Chart 7). The percentages of African American, Hispanic, and American Indian faculty in 2005-06 are well below parity with 2025 population projections, while Asians have already surpassed parity. In the case of African American and Hispanic faculty, the percentages have dropped slightly from last year. As the number of both Hispanic and African American students attending postsecondary institutions continues to increase, however, it may be possible to close the faculty gap, if serious efforts are undertaken to encourage young scholars from minority backgrounds to work in the nation’s colleges and universities.

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Published In


  • Advocate 2009 Special Salary Review
  • Advocate Special Issue 2009 (in its entirety)

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