According to the National Association of Education Statistics, African-American women are the most educated group in the U.S. population. Between 2009 and 2010, Black women earned 68% of associate’s degrees, 66% of bachelor’s degrees, 71% of master’s degrees and 65% of all doctorate degrees awarded to Black students.
“By both race and gender there is a higher percentage of Black women (9.7 percent) enrolled in college than any other group including Asian women (8.7 percent), white women (7.1 percent) and white men (6.1 percent),” reported Slate.
The percentage of Black students attending college has increased from 10%-15% from 1976 to 2012, while the percentage of white students fell from 84%-60%.
From the report:
From 1999–2000 to 2009–’10, the percentage of degrees earned by females remained between approximately 60 and 62 percent for associate’s degrees and between 57 and 58 percent for bachelor’s degrees. In contrast, the percentages of both master’s and doctor’s degrees earned by females increased from 1999–2000 to 2009–’10.
Within each racial/ethnic group, women earned the majority of degrees at all levels in 2009–’10. For example, among U.S. residents, Black females earned 68 percent of associate’s degrees, 66 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 71 percent of master’s degrees, and 65 percent of all doctor’s degrees awarded to Black students. Hispanic females earned 62 percent of associate’s degrees, 61 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 64 percent of master’s degrees, and 55 percent of all doctor’s degrees awarded to Hispanic students. (White women earned 61 percent of Associate’s degrees, 56 percent of bachelor’s degrees, 61.8 percent of master’s, and 51.4 percent of doctorates.)
As About notes, “although Black women only make up 12.7 percent of the female population in the country, they consistently make up over 50 percent—and sometimes much more—of the number of Blacks who receive postsecondary degrees. Percentage-wise, Black women outpace white women, Latinas, Asian/Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans in this arena.”
However, a recent study found Black women make up just 8% of private sector jobs and 1.5% of leadership roles.