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  • 04.19.17

These college majors can lead to careers with gender wage gaps

Although the gender wage gap is more complicated than a broad cents-on-the-dollar figure, Glassdoor’s latest report suggests that certain college majors not only impact career paths, but salary disparities in the first five years after graduation. 

The majors with the biggest gender pay gaps favoring men:

* Health care administration (men earn 22% more)

Mathematics (18%) 

Biology (13%)

The majors with the biggest gender pay gaps favoring women:

Architecture (women earn 14% more)

Music (10.1%) 

Social work (8.4%)

Nine of the 10 highest paying majors are male-dominated. By contrast, six of the 10 lowest paying majors are female-dominated.

Even with the same major, men and women face unequal pay through sorting into different jobs after graduating that pay differently. According to Glassdoor’s chief economist Andrew Chamberlain:

In the case of health care administration, men from this major gravitate toward more senior roles like quality specialist, data consultant, and implementation consultant, while women often take jobs as administrative assistant, customer care representative and intern. What we see in this study is that men in these health care administration roles are being fast-tracked toward higher-paying jobs despite similar majors as women. In mathematics and biology, we see a similar phenomenon. 

Chamberlain says the study can’t explain why this is happening, only that it’s real and contributing to the gender pay gap. Read the full study here.LD