Our thanks to Jeff for pointing us to this piece. Firstly, note the headline wording. Male applicants for degree places are ‘boys’, female applicants ‘women’. Secondly, it was written by a female journalist. Is there a blanket ban on male journalists writing about gender-related matters?
Women account for 57.2% of applicants, very close to the current proportion of university students who are women. As usual some concern is feigned for men, but nothing will actually be done, and the article ends with the customary reversion to concern over women, who as always need to be ‘encouraged’ into subjects such as computing and engineering (usually at taxpayers’ expense):
Meanwhile degree courses which saw the biggest rise in demand were technology, which saw 13 per cent more applications, computer science, up 12 per cent and engineering, up 10 per cent. Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of Universities UK, welcomed the figures but warned that women still less likely (sic) to study courses such as engineering.
‘The increase in applicants applying for subjects such as engineering and computing is also welcome. Those subjects play a vital role in meeting the skills needs of UK employers in globally competitive industries. However, it is still a concern that the number of women applying to study these courses remains disproportionally (sic) low when compared to the number of male applicants. Universities are aware of this and continue to work hard to encourage women into technology and engineering through their outreach activities.’