TABLE 2-5 Standardized Mean Gender Difference of Math Achievement Scores Among High School Seniors by Cohort

School Cohort

Mean Difference (d)

Data Source

1960

–0.25***

NLS-72

1968

–0.22***

HSBSr

1970

–0.15***

HSBSo

1978

–0.13**

LSAY1

1980

–0.09***

NELS

*p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 (two-tailed test), for the hypothesis that there is no mean difference between males and females.

TABLE 2-6 Female-to-Male Ratio of the Odds of Achieving in the Top 5% of the Distribution of Math Achievement Test Scores Among High School Seniors by Cohort

School Cohort

Achievement Ratio

Data Source

1960

0.45***

NLS-72

1968

0.47***

HSBSr

1970

0.48***

HSBSo

1978

0.25***

LSAY1

1980

0.60***

NELS

*p<.05 **p<.01 ***p<.001 (two-tailed test), for the hypothesis that there is no mean difference between males and females.

The Pipeline Paradigm

A dominant perspective in the literature on women in science is the “pipeline” paradigm. According to this paradigm, the process of becoming a scientist can be conceptualized as a pipeline, called the “science pipeline,” which is essentially a developmental process. Change in the developmental process along the life course is unidirectional—leaving science versus staying in science.

However, we find career processes to be fluid and dynamic. Exit, entry, and reentry are real possibilities. Many persons, especially women, become scientists through complicated processes rather than by just staying in the pipeline. Also, we show that participation gaps are greatest at the transition from high school to college. This is illustrated in Figure 2-13.



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