Gender differences in professional role and political attitudes in the academic work force



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The study is based on survey responses from one hundred five faculty members of a southwestern urban university. A questionnaire was mailed to a sample composed of the women faculty in the top three academic ranks and to a matched sample of male faculty (two hundred academics). The matching male respondents were selected randomly from a list of all males of similar department rank and marital status. The findings indicated that academic women in this sample do not differ significantly from their male counterparts with respect to professional role definition or adaptation. However, women perceive their own professional experiences differently from the way in which men perceive either their own experiences or the professional women's experiences. Finally, while all faculty are supportive of feminist goals dealing with civil rights issues, women professionals differ from their male counterparts in that they tend to support change in the present sex role system.