The claim that women make 77 cents to every dollar men make disregards many choices women make, leading to false claims on social inequality and skewing gender debates.
Lets explore why women don’t REALLY make less than men.
“Women make $.77 for every $1 men make”–Common Stat
It’s true, but only if you don’t account for:
Or hours worked per week
Which lower the wage gap to around 5 cents.
$.95 — women
$1 — men
So what’s really going on?
Expectations and Sex-based stereotypes push 
Men towards STEM careers.
Women towards “pink-collar” health and education jobs.
Or men in people-free projects
women in caring professions.
The real wage gap is explained by common choices by gender.
Like which college major you choose.
10 more remunerative college majors:
- Petroleum Engineering: 87% male
- Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration: 48% male
- Math and Computer Science: 67% male
- Aerospace Engineering: 88% male
- Chemical Engineering: 72% male
- Electrical Engineering: 89%
- Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering: 97% male
- Mechanical Engineering: 90% male
- Metallurgical Engineering: 83% male
- Mining and Mineral Engineering: 90% male
10 least remunerative college majors:
- Counseling Psychology: 74% female
- Early Childhood Education: 97% female
- Theology and Religious Vocations: 35% female
- Human Services and Community Organization: 81% female
- Social Work: 88% female
- Drama and Theater arts: 60% female
- Studio Arts: 66% female
- Communication Disorders Sciences and Services: 94% female
- Visual and performing Arts: 77%
- Health and Medical Preparatory Programs: 55% female
Only two majors break the trend:
Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration: 52% female
Theology and Religious Vocations: 65% male
Males overwhelmingly choose higher paying majors, females lower paying majors.
Early childhood educators or social workers: $36,000-$39,000
Metallurgy and petroleum engineering: $80,000-$120,000
$.38 — females
$1.00 — males
Based not on gender discrimination, but choice of college major.
Whether you work more at home, or at work:
Women take on more unpaid work at home than men.
Work vs. Home balance:
Total hours per week–
Unpaid household work:15.9
Paid Work: 31.4
Unpaid household work: 26.7
Paid work: 21
The greatest disparity is between those 35 and 44
Male paid work per week: 41.7 hours
Female unpaid work per week: 33.1 hours
Total paid and unpaid work:
Women: 92/ hours week
Men: 84/ hours week
Mothers also experience more career disruptions than fathers.
13% of employers offer paid paternity leave
Yet 3/4 of men who receive paternity leave don’t take off for a week or less
When a child is born.
Almost all tenured professors receive maternity/paternity leave.
Yet 12% of fathers took off paternity leave
While 62% of mothers did.
How much you sacrifice for your kids:
Working mothers report greater difficulty advancing careers than working fathers.
% with children <18 who say parental role makes it harder to advance.
1/7 women who leave for maternity leave return to find themselves redundant
40% return to find their job changed
50% report cut in hours or demotion.
Type of career disruption:
[% saying they have x in order to care for a child or family member]
Reduced work hours:
Taken a significant amount of time off:
Turned down a promotion:
And what your goals are.
And more women not saying they would like to be a top manager someday
[#% saying they would like to be a boss/top manager one day]
Millennial (18-32 y.o.’s):
Gen X (33-48 y.o.’s):
Boomer (49-67 y.o.’s):
The good news is that progressively, more women believe they can “have it all.”
[% believing women they can “have it all”]
Aged 18-34: 66%
Aged 65+: 76%
With drastically increased % of women:
In the labor force
With college degrees
In upper management
Earning the same amount as men.