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May 16, 2003

Chix rule?!?!

This Businessweek article documents the rise of women in educational attainment. Why is this happening? I think it is the fact that there are more men at the bottom end of the IQ bell curve while the minimum intellectual capacity demanded for collegiate studies has been downshifting toward the fat middle of the distribution (around the mean) where females outnumber males. A clue to what is going on is that the article notes that more lower income women than men take standardized tests-just as high IQ men pair with lower IQ women (though still very intelligent of course ;) the lowest IQ men normally get together with somewhat higher IQ women. These women are now going into higher education, leaving their dull partners behind them....

Posted by razib at 05:48 PM




What percentage of 18 year olds go to college? What percentage graduate?

If it is more than half then, yes, there are below-100 IQ people going to college and then the lower IQs of men on the bottom half of the curve would start to figure in to the result.

However, I suspect that men are less likely than women to graduate from college even adjusted for IQ. My guess is that women are more willing to sit still for book learning in general. My guess is that this rather that different Bell Curve shapes is the bigger contributing factor.

Given that the ratio of black females to black males in college is so high how much are the overall differences for the population as a whole due to this? What percentage of whites going to college are male versus female?

Posted by: Randall Parker at May 17, 2003 11:20 AM


I think that male pop youth culture is much more destructive of men's chances than female pop youth culture is of women's, and men tend to go more enthusiastically into the stereotypes too, I think.

Many of the stereotypes of male sexiness are grounded on losers -- cowboys, mobsters, surfers, bikers, hillbilly bankrobbers, various sorts of violent, impulsive, charming men with no future.

The outcome of the left / feminism battles was that a girl planning to go to law school was cutting-edge, whereas a boy with the same plans was just a boring careerist shit.

At my medical school you see a fair number of sharp female medical students with their self-effacing hippy boyfriends. Usually dumping ensues. (The guys often dump their submissive cheerleader girlfriends too to trade up for an wife capable of producing more income, but proabably less -- no data, I'm making it all up based on anecdotes).

From what I've seen, the middle eastern medical students / PhD candidates seem mostly to be female. I think the reason is that medical and PhD training involves about 20-25 years of doing what other people tell you to do (starting at age 6) and that middle eastern women are much better than that than middle eastern guys.

The need for independence is a loser except in very small doses. I've been there.

P.S. IMHO, IQ is a treacherous proxy term for all the various things leading to success and accomplishment.

Posted by: zizka at May 18, 2003 07:08 AM


Making some inferences from the graph that gc linked to, I think we can conclude that your theory is bogus - in the USA it shows only 30-some % of 25-34 yr olds are degreed; even if you up the number some to account for currently enrolled students you don't end up over 50%, which you would need before the lowering of the differential cutoff would result in a female majority.
Of course it may still play a role, but I do think cultural factors are more important - zizka's comments are dead on.

Posted by: bbartlog at May 19, 2003 07:42 AM


Women like safe nests. To hook up with a strong, superior male is safe. Yet, to the female ego, this is offensive. Western women want the alpha male role.

In Iran, women are some 53% of the enrollment in universities. They are generally extremely intelligent, aggressive, and outspoken. State education is free, the competition is incredible, and those that make it in are stunning personalities. That was my impression when i was there, 1999.

But white men in America have been duped by their own sense of charity. Giving place to others seems righteous, but it is self-destructive. Righteousness seldom works through legal means.
Attorneys have done this to America. America's own legal system is destroying it.

America did not become strong through women leaders, (great as white women can be.) It became great through strong men, and GOOD MOTHERS. History is the best argument here.

To change the structure of things is a different direction, and it cannot be anything but downward. Other, in this case, is not better, but worse.

Posted by: David Yeagley at May 19, 2003 03:43 PM


Men have more opportunities than women to get well-paying jobs that don't require college -- construction, trade work, etc. Yes, women can go into these fields too, but men have superior upper body strength and that really helps in those types of jobs.

Also, our school system is incompatible with little boys -- as evidenced by the very high percentages (I've read in some schools it's over 50%) of boys on ritalin and other ADD drugs. So if boys are learning at an early age that school is unpleasant or something they are bad at, that probably discourages them from succeeding in school or going on to college.

As far as much higher numbers of black females going to college versus black males, keep in mind that a significant percentage of college aged black males are going to prison. Also, any sort of drug conviction prevents access to financial aid. So that makes it more difficult for young black men to go to college. Meanwhile, most black babies are born out of wedlock, and there are all sorts of programs for single mothers to help them go to college.

Posted by: Jacqueline at May 21, 2003 08:36 PM