Cover Image


View/Hide Left Panel

fessors. Female faculty in biology were considered for promotion in 24 percent of the cases (28 percent of the associate professor pool); 14 percent of the cases in chemistry (18 percent of the pool); 18 percent of the cases in civil engineering (14 percent of the pool); 17 percent of cases in electrical engineering (13 percent of the pool); 9 percent of cases in mathematics (15 percent of the pool); and 7 percent of the cases in physics (8 percent of the pool). (Table 5-5)

Time in Rank

Finding 5-8: Time in rank as an assistant professor has grown over time for both male and female faculty. Men who were full professors at the time of the survey had spent the least amount of time in rank as assistant professors. This was true across all disciplines.

Finding 5-9: Women who were associate professors at the time of the survey had averaged a significantly longer time in rank as assistant professors in all fields except electrical engineering, where women’s shorter time in rank was not significantly different (p = 0.999). It is difficult to determine whether these apparent differences persist once we control for individual and departmental characteristics such as length of postdoctoral experience and stopping the tenure clock for family leave. While women did appear to remain at the rank of assistant professor longer than men, the differences between genders depended upon factors such as the prestige of the institution, the time elapsed since the completion of the doctoral degree, and the current rank of the individual. Both male and female faculty spent longer time in the assistant professor ranks at institutions of higher prestige. (Table 5-9)

Finding 5-10: Male and female faculty who stopped the tenure clock spent significantly more time as assistant professors than those who did not (an average of 74 months compared to 57 months). They had a lower chance of promotion to associate professor (about 80 percent) at any time (given that they had not been promoted until then) than those who did not stop the clock. Everything else being equal, however, stopping the tenure clock did not affect the probability of promotion and tenure; it just delayed it by about a year and a half. It is unclear how that delay affected female faculty, who were more likely than men to avail themselves of this policy. Although the effect of stopping the tenure clock on the probability of promotion and tenure was similar for both male and female faculty, 19.7 percent of female assistant professors in the survey sample availed themselves of this policy compared to 7.4 percent of male assistant professors. At the associate professor level, 10.2 percent of female faculty compared to 6.4 percent of male faculty stopped the tenure clock. (Table 5-13)

The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement