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Abstract

This article reviews prior and emerging research on the gender gap in higher education using a comparative lens. The article outlines historical trends in the gender gap in higher education, focusing on areas where women are advantaged and disadvantaged. It then reviews prior explanations for women’s increasing enrollment in college and continued sex segregation in fields of study. It suggests three fruitful areas for future research to understand the cross-national female advantage in the completion of college and university degrees: (1) the female advantage in schooling; (2) male vulnerability to growing up in resource-deprived homes; and (3) changing incentives for men and women to complete higher education.