The Large Gender Gap in Degree Attainments Among African Americans

Today there are 2,451,000 black women holding a four-year degree or better compared to only 1,801,000 black men. Therefore, it turns out that black women have almost 58 percent of all the bachelor’s degrees earned by blacks in our country.  

Some 577,000 black women hold a master’s degree compared to 375,000 black men. Thus, black women hold 61 percent of all African-American master’s degrees, an even larger share of their total in bachelor’s degree attainments.

Black men continue to have a lead over black women in their number of professional degrees. Approximately 86,000 black men have a professional degree in the United States today compared to 80,000 black women. But black women have almost closed the gap. In view of the fact that black women now earn nearly two thirds of all new professional degrees earned by African Americans, it will only be a few years before black women overtake black men in the total number of professional degrees held by living African Americans.

Black men continue to hold the lead in doctorates. Black men hold 67,000 of the 113,000 doctorates held by living African Americans. But this gap is also likely to close in the years ahead. Black women now earn 65 percent of all new doctorates awarded to African Americans.