ERIC Number: ED203266
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar-25
A Feminist Cinderella Tale: Why Women Over Age 30 Want to Attend Graduate and Professional School and What Happens to Them.
Kaplan, Susan Romer
Women who, as adolescents, feared success in male-dominated fields, may demonstrate non-traditional career preferences later in life and return to school to pursue their new career aspirations. In-depth interviews were conducted with 25 women over age 30 who were enrolled in graduate or professional schools. Data showed that mature women students wanted to obtain advanced degrees because of the intellectual challenge, as well as for vocational concerns. Most women pursued fields that had interested them as undergraduate students; many enrolled in traditionally feminine fields. Single and divorced women were more likely than married women to be in traditionally masculine fields. Women in the over-40 age cohort were more likely than women in the age 35-39 cohort to be in traditionally masculine fields. Institutional barriers affecting the admission and retention of mature women students included admission, relationships with faculty, and financial problems. Personal barriers centered around family responsibilities and emotional strain. Findings suggest that despite these difficulties, women graduate and professional students over age 30 are extremely committed to their fields of study. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the National Association of Women Deans, Administrators and Counselors Convention (San Francisco, California, March 25, 1981).