The topic of this article is “3 Ways Online Learning Can Reduce The Gender Gap In Higher Education And The Workforce”
- According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report 2022, it would take women 132 years to reach full parity with men in the workforce.
- The ability of women to reenter the workforce will depend on their access to the knowledge and skills necessary to do so.
- Online education presents a priceless opportunity to level the playing field for women by introducing them to greater opportunities and prospects.
Women were among those most seriously impacted by the pandemic. Large numbers of women were forced out of labor, and overall, they lost more jobs than men.
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Two years later, they are still at risk according to the International Labour Organization, having been left behind in a “gender-unequal” employment recovery.
In contrast to pre-pandemic estimates of only 100 years, the World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Report 2022 reveals that assuming the current trend continues, it will now take 132 years to reach gender equality.
Equipping women with the knowledge and skills they need to re-enter the labor field and fulfill their full earning potential is crucial for accelerating an equitable recovery.
New insights reveal an increasing opportunity to address this challenge on a massive scale. Using data from Coursera, the Global Gender Gap Report 2022 identifies encouraging trends in online learning that could contribute to greater gender parity in higher education and workforce development.
Online learning is eliminating gender education inequities and preparing women for in-demand roles in the digital economy by reducing impediments for female students, boosting gender inclusion in STEM fields, and connecting women to growing skills and employment opportunities. How? Keep reading.
Improving Gender Inclusion in STEM Fields
According to the Global Gender Gap Report 2022, the enrollment and graduation rates of women from higher education institutions have increased during the past five years. There is nonetheless still a gender gap in higher education.
Women continue to be underrepresented in occupations with high demand, such as engineering and information and communication technologies (ICT). In addition, the poll finds that women are underrepresented in STEM fields, which provide the foundational knowledge for the fast-developing digital and technology job market.
Globally, the “fastest-growing employment categories” in 2022, according to statistics from LinkedIn, are in technology. In the future, nine out of ten vocations are anticipated to require digital capabilities.
Coursera data included in the Global Gender Gap 2022 study indicates that gender parity in online ICT training grew in numerous economies between 2019 and 2021, with Greece and Hungary showing significant gains in the proportion of women enrolled in ICT.
This is an encouraging trend that may narrow these discrepancies. In Saudi Arabia, a Middle Eastern nation, female participation in online ICT climbed from 9.2% to 16.1%.
Despite this progress, much more must be done to close the gender gap in the digital world and facilitate a wider move to online education, particularly in developing countries. In India, for example, women’s online ICT enrollment increased slightly from 23.8% to 24.8%.
Expanding internet access could greatly boost the effectiveness of online learning, as only 33 percent of women in India have used the internet, compared to 57 percent of men.
In the next years, the Indian government’s emphasis on encouraging inclusive digital access and online learning will also make it easier to scale learning interventions that benefit female learners in STEM.
In addition, there is an opportunity to reevaluate strategies to encourage more women to seek degrees in STEM fields. The survey highlights the fact that men continue to be overrepresented in “male-dominated” sectors, particularly STEM fields, in both traditional and online formats.
According to our research, more female teachers can encourage more female students to pursue STEM and other high-demand fields. Women are more likely to enroll in courses taught by female instructors and to award those courses higher grades.
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