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Gender gaps in math performance, perceived mathematical ability and college STEM education: the role of parental occupation

Lina Anaya, Frank Stafford and Gema Zamarro

Education Economics, 2022, vol. 30, issue 2, 113-128

Abstract: Despite the promising future of employment opportunities in occupations related to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), women remain underrepresented in some STEM occupational fields. We use data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to study the role of gender differences in achievement and self-perceived ability in math during childhood, along with parental occupation (science-related versus non-science-related jobs), in the subsequent decision of majoring in science in college. Our findings suggest a loss in STEM enrollment by otherwise qualified young women and highlight the potential importance of parental occupation in STEM in encouraging women's participation in certain STEM fields.

Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1080/09645292.2021.1974344

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