No Progress in Closing the Racial Gap in Doctoral Degrees

nsf1According to the latest data from the National Science Foundation, in 2012, 2,079 African Americans earned doctoral degrees at universities in the United States. This was up from 1,940 doctorates earned by African Americans in 2011. In 2009, a record 2,234 African Americans earned doctorates. This year’s total is the second highest on record.

All told, Americans earned 32,927 doctorates in 2012. Thus, African Americans earned 6.3 percent of all doctoral degrees awarded to U.S. citizens and permanent residents in this country. African Americans are about 13 percent of the U.S. population, so there remains a major shortfall in doctoral degree awards.

There has been no progress over the past decade. In 2002, African Americans earned 6.3 percent of all doctorates awarded to U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Of the 2,079 doctorates awarded to African Americans, 1,322 went to women. Thus, women received 63.6 percent of all African American doctorates. In contrast, women earned 49 percent of all doctorates won by White Americans.

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