More girls than boys are enrolled in medical science courses across the country.
According to a status report on the higher education in the country, 2 lakh girls currently undergo undergrad medical courses, against 1.75 lakh boys.
The report, Annual Status of Higher Education in States and UTs in India, 2013, was released by the ministry of human resources development and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in New Delhi on Thursday.
The enrolment of boys in all streams is higher than girls, with engineering topping the chart. Medical stream, however, is an exception, the report said.
The gender gap is almost negligible in the humanities stream, with 31.3 lakh females and 31.7 lakh males undergoing undergrad courses. The science stream comes next where female and male enrolment is 6.8 lakh and 7.8 lakh, respectively.
The ratio of boys and girls in the engineering and technology streams is 7:3.
Pointing out the gender disparity in universities, the report states, “In gender terms, enrolment in higher education is skewed as 55.7% comprises males and 44.3% females.”
There are 621 universities (as of 2010-11) across the country, with public universities having the highest share (45.2%). The five states with the maximum number of universities are Tamil Nadu (59), Uttar Pradesh (56), Andhra Pradesh (46), Maharashtra (44) and Rajasthan (43).
India has 32,974 colleges (as of 2010-11), with Andhra Pradesh leading the list with 4,780, followed by Maharashtra (4,512), Uttar Pradesh (4,049), Karnataka (3,098) and Rajasthan (2,435).
Besides, there are 11,139 stand-alone institutions, not affiliated to any university.
The gender gap in the classroom
Despite state-funded educational schemes and various scholarships, the gross enrolment ratio (GER) of schedule tribe candidates in higher educational courses in India is 11.2%. As compared to 12.9% GER of boys, girl’s GER is only 9.5%. GER of scheduled caste candidates is higher than the ST but it is only 13.5% (16.6% male, 12.3% female) as against the overall GER of 19.4% (20.8% male and 17.9% female).