New data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that in 2011, 18 percent of Black men over the age of 25 had obtained at least a bachelor’s degree. For Black women over the age of 25, 21.4 percent were college educated.
A generation or two ago, the gender gap in African American degree attainments heavily favored men. This large advantage for older Black men has a residual effect for the overall figures today. However, the gender gap in degree attainments for younger African Americans is far more pronounced. If we look at degree attainments for African Americans ages 25 to 29, we find that 16.1 percent of Black men hold at least a four-year college degree. For Black women ages 25 to 29, 22.9 percent are college educated.
Some 56,000 young Black women aged 25 to 29 hold master’s degrees compared to only 23,000 young Black men.