Academic Advancement: Women, Minority Medical Faculty Lag Behind Their Male, White Colleagues

Research on factors influencing women's participation in academic medicine

In 1985, a research team at Boston University School of Medicine surveyed nearly 2,000 faculty at 24 medical schools about the academic advancement of women, minority, and generalist faculty in medical school departments, compared to that of male, majority, and specialty faculty.

Key Findings

  • The researchers reported the findings in peer-reviewed journals, including Academic Medicine and Annals of Internal Medicine.

    • Professional characteristics of male and female faculty, minority and majority faculty, and generalist and specialty faculty (medical school attended, fellowship training, and membership in the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society) are comparable.
    • Female faculty had half the probability of becoming a full professor as male faculty.
    • Minority faculty had one-third the probability of becoming a full professor as majority faculty.
    • Generalist faculty had two-thirds the probability of becoming a full professor as specialist faculty.

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