No, Women Getting College Degrees Won’t Close The Gender Wage Gap

by Bryce Covert

The gender wage gap stands at 22 percent, meaning that American women who work full-time, year-round, make just 78 percent of what their male peers make in a year. Progress to close it has been basically nonexistent for a decade. But some argue that the fact that young women are getting college degrees at a faster rate than men is a sign that the wage gap is going to shrink.

Unfortunately, the data doesn’t look good for that prediction. As with all workers, getting a higher degree boosts women’s earnings: a woman with a bachelor’s makes an average of twice that of a woman who didn’t graduate from high school. But according to a new report from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), the wage gap actually widens the more education a woman pursues.

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