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CVER Research Paper
Gender, achievement, and subject choice in English education
Chiara Cavaglia, Stephen Machin, Sandra McNally and Jenifer Ruiz-Valenzuela October 2020
Paper No' CVERDP032:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: I20; I24

Tags: gender gap; educational achievement; stem

In common with other OECD countries, there is a gender gap in educational achievement in England favouring girls. This carries through to tertiary education. On the other hand, boys are far more likely to engage in STEM in post-16 vocational education and at university. The underachievement of boys overall, but over-representation in STEM, presents significant challenges for policy. This paper documents changes in the gender gap over the last 20 years in England and discusses findings in the light of international evidence. It concludes that education policies, in academic and in vocational spheres, can be designed to reduce gender inequalities that exist in both.

This paper has been published as:
This discussion paper is forthcoming in Oxford Review of Economic Policy, volume 36 number 4.