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Journal Article

Why Are Men Falling Behind? Gender Gaps in College Performance and Persistence

DYLAN CONGER and MARK C. LONG
The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science
Vol. 627, Beyond Admissions: Re-thinking College Opportunities and Outcomes (January 2010), pp. 184-214
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40607412
Page Count: 31
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Why Are Men Falling Behind? Gender Gaps in College Performance and Persistence
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Abstract

This article examines the male disadvantage in grade point average, credits earned, and persistence in college. Using data on enrollees in Florida and Texas fouryear colleges to decompose gender differentials in the first semester, changes in the differentials between semesters, and persistence through college, we find that males earn lower GPAs and credits in their first semester of college largely because they arrive with lower high school grades. After the first semester, males fall further behind their female counterparts in grades and credits. Females' better high school grades explain some of the widened gender disparity in performance but differences in college course-taking and majors also explain gender gaps in credits, grades, persistence, and graduation.

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