Headline Oct 07, 2015/ ''' THE UNIVERSITY CHALLENGE '''


FEMALE STUDENTS   -are scarce in some,  but not all academic disciplines. New work suggests the cause maybe a special kind of prejudice  -and one  that also applies to black people.

MOST OF THE TIME, -any policymaking is about tinkering at the edges. The developing countries, like Pakistan, are great masters at this art. Politicians argue furiously about modest changes to:

Taxes spending or education, and then walk away, in most of the cases not doing anything at all. They even Fear To Tread.

But now,  -with the plunging price of oil, coupled with advances in clean energy and conservation, offers politicians around the world, the chance to rationalise educational policy.

Falling oil prices provide a great opportunity to rethink the nonsense of fuel subsidies. Cash-strapped Pakistan, India, Indonesia must bravely begin to cut fuel subsidies, freeing up money for Education. 

IT IS A VERY LONG TIME  -since the groves of academe were paced and  paved only by men, but even now some of them are more populated by women than others are.

Why, is a mystery?

Though the phenomenon is most discusses in scientific and technological disciplines........[new PHDs in maths and physics are earned mostly by men, while  -in America at least   -half of those in molecular biology and neuroscience are awarded to women].

It is equally true in the social sciences and humanities, where art history and psychology are dominated by women, and economics and philosophy by men.

Various explanations have been advanced,  beyond differential prejudice in different fields. That the long hours required for laboratory work are unconducive to child-rearing is one. 

A second is that those subjects in which women are rarest-
require habits of systematic thought found {it is claimed by some}  more often in men.

A third is that, though men and women have the same relevant abilities on average, the statistical distribution of these may be wider in men than women. 

Since academics are people who have these abilities most abundantly, the tail of male geniuses in the bell curve would- if this were true  [the evidence is equivocal]  be longer than that of female ones.

Suggesting this latter possibility in 2005 helped cost Larry Summers,  then President of Harvard, his job, for the subject is a political dynamite.

A paper recently published in Science, though, suggests all these explanations are wrong. What is happening, its authors say, really is just a species of prejudice. Moreover, it is prejudice, which, they think-

Also explains why some ethnic minorities, black people in particular, are under-represented in a similar way.

The paper's authors, led by Sarah-Jane Leslie of Princeton university and Dr Andrei Cimpian of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, hypothesise that the crucial variable is something they call field-specific ability.

[Basically, innate talent] or-  rather, a belief in this quality by those already entrenched in a discipline.

They have found that the more existing professors think some special talent, beyond intelligence and hard work, is required to do their subject well

The lower will be the percentage of PhD students in that subject who are women.

The Honour and Serving of the latest  ''Educational Operational Research'' continues. Thank you for reading, and I hope sharing forward with all the university students the world over.
With respectful dedication to all the Leaders of the Free World. See Ya all Your Excellencies on !WOW!   -the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless:

''' Teaming Up '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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