Percentage of female students

Definition

Total number of female students in a given level of education, expressed as a percentage of the total number of students enrolled at that level of education.

Calculation method

Divide the total number of female students at a given level of education by the total enrolment at the same level, and multiply by 100.

Data required

Number of students by gender.

Data source

School register, school survey or census for data on enrolment by level of education.

Interpretation

A value approaching 50% indicates that the number of female students and the one of male students in a given level of education are almost equal. A value greater than 50% reveals participation of more female students at a specific level or programme of education.

Limitations

The percentage of female students represents a simple and limited way to judge gender parity. In cases when the target population has a higher number of persons from one gender, gender parity is not identical to a 50% female participation, since equal participation would mirror the percentage of females in the target population. The gender parity index provides a population adjusted measure of gender parity and should be used with priority.

Purpose

To show the gender composition of the student body. It helps also in assessing the opportunities or incentives to encourage females’ participation in the future labour force.

Quality standards

This indicator should be based on reliable data on enrolment by gender (full and/or part-time students) at each level of education.

Types of disaggregation

By level of education and by type of institutions (public and private).