Norway among countries with the lowest proportion of women in vocational studies

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Norway is one of the OECD, or Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, countries with the lowest proportion of women studying vocational subjects at upper secondary level. It is according to the OECD Education at a Glance 2021.

Professional careers are those that apply qualified practical skills related to broad fields, including business, engineering, IT, or health and social care. Examples of such occupations include plumbing, hairdressing, and catering.

In total, women represent less than 40% of students in vocational courses, more than 5% less than the OECD average.

Among Norway’s northern neighbors, Finland has the highest proportion, 51 percent, of women studying vocational subjects, followed by Denmark, 43 percent, and Sweden, 41 percent.

However, depending on the subject, the gender disparity could vary massively. For example, women made up only 8% of electrical engineering students. That’s about half of the OCED average.

The report indicated that gender differences in vocational training programs can be attributed to traditional perceptions of gender roles.

For example, women made up the overwhelming majority, 83 percent, studying social sciences and health-related subjects.

“The gender gap is just as striking for students of health and social sciences. In Norway, up to 83% of students were women in 2019 ”, Statistics Norway said about the report.

Another reason for the potential disparity is that professional occupations traditionally associated with men, such as carpentry or plumbing, are taught in upper secondary education, while jobs such as nursing are taught in higher education. .

“In Norway, male-dominated vocational training is taught at upper secondary level, while female-dominated training, such as in the health system, is mainly at university and college level,” Statistics Norway said of the report. OECD. report.

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With regard to more general education, women made up the majority of upper secondary graduates, with 57% of all graduates being women.

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