Career Woman

How women psychologists are reshaping the workforce


It’s no secret that the world we live in today is still very much plagued by inequalities of all kinds. When it comes to gender biases, the conversation is still as difficult and multi-faceted as it was two hundred years ago. In fact, nowadays it might be even more so, due to the fact that we possess more knowledge on the topic than ever before.

While that’s undisputedly a good thing, the unfortunate aspect of it all is that a lot of people in positions of power still struggle with commonsensical notions regarding the rights of women. Still, when it comes to the job industry, visible progress has been made. We might not be where we truly want to just yet, but we are getting there, which is a victory in itself.

The feminine workforce

The largest influx of women entering the workforce took placed during the second wave of feminism in the 1960s. With the subsequent third wave of the nineties and the current fourth wave led by celebrities such as Beyoncé, Emma Watson, and Tina Fey, the numbers look even better presently.

Nowadays, thanks to equality of outcome politics being enforced at a global level, women have more professional options than ever before. Fewer and fewer workplaces discriminate on the basis of gender, although there are still a lot of inequities happening in spite of the fact that it’s 2018 already.

Still, young girls and women can now Their chances are just as high when looking for jobs at McDonald’s or filing a Dollar General application as they are when aiming for a partner position at an esteemed law firm. Furthermore, most of these companies now offer a lot of benefits for their female employees, which is yet another proof of progress.

For example, Dollar General stores have updated staff training programs that prevent discrimination on the job, and so do famous fast food chains such as KFC, Wendy’s or Subway. McDonald’s is also top of the line when it comes to enforcing policies of equalities in all their locations, and so are most major corporations such as Apple, Exxon, or even General Motors.

One field that had a lot to benefit from the social revolution brought by the previous three waves of feminism and continued currently during the fourth one is that of psychology. The merits of women psychologists are starting to be acknowledged more and more today. Here is an overview of that.

Women in psychology

Although there are quite a few famous women psychologists that have made history in their area of expertise, their male contemporaries are often remembered more. Still, women have professed in this field simultaneously with them, and their contributions have been just as important.

Nowadays, more and more ladies are joining the workforce in this domain while still fresh out of college. They are driven and pursue their careers with ambition and tact. Some of them manage to find a balance even between having children and becoming esteemed academics, which is something most of their male counterparts rarely have to deal with.

Due to the progress that continues to take place, women now outnumber men in the field, according to statistics gathered by the American Psychological Association. This is also visible at the level of student counts, with 75% of all people who enroll in psychology graduate programs being college-aged young women.

However, due to this large influx of female graduates getting a job for the first time, the average salary for women that have this occupation is considerably lower than that of men. This is still as true today as it was more than two decades ago, unfortunately. And yet, this domain is welcome more and more female practitioners with each day.

This is proof that all the growth and improvement we’re talking about is still in its budding state. It hasn’t managed to fully flourish just yet, and it might take some time to reach completion. Still, a lot of beneficial results are visible. The overall atmosphere has become far more welcoming now that female psychologists are getting the respect they deserve.

Important contributions

For the longest time, the contributions of women psychologists were kept under wraps and rarely disclosed, even though some of them have helped shape the field tremendously during their careers. The most famous example surely has to be that of Anna Freud, Sigmund Freud’s youngest daughter.

With a lot of determination in mind, Anna took her father’s theories of psychoanalysis and adapted them so that they would be suitable for the treatment of children. Much of the amazing work that is being done nowadays is treating toddlers and preteens that suffer from various mental issues is her merit and her merit alone.

The same can be said about plenty of amazing contributors to the field today. Even though skeptics believe that psychology knows all that there is to know about the human mind, that is far from being true. We constantly find out a lot of important aspects that medical science hadn’t considered before.

Little do some know that some of that research is completed by women. And yet, there is still a lot of inequity in the field. Not only are men far more likely to advance faster either when it comes to practical work or the academia, but they are also allowed to focus more on their careers.

At the other end of the spectrum, women are seen as disruptive due to the fact that some of them choose to start families while pursuing their occupational goals. Still, as previously mentioned, most of them manage to find an adequate balance between these two very different objectives, which is further proof of their unblemished professionalism.

If anything, the history of psychology offers a distorted view of contribution value when it comes to classifying it on the basis of gender. The focus was and still continues to be on the merits of the men in the field. This is why it’s essential that we become aware of the valuable work women have put into this area for decades now.

Achieving this is important not only for the domain itself but also for current female psychologists that want to understand their roots. After all, it’s always reassuring to know that there were plenty of great ladies before you that managed to accomplish amazing things. This can be a much-needed boost of motivation for many young women struggling to find their path in life.

Final thoughts

When it comes to women joining the workforce, gender biases aren’t nearly as bad as they used to be. While there are still plenty of injustices being enforced and we have to withstand their consequences, the world is slowly, but surely becoming a better place to raise young independent girls in.

As for the field of psychology, the silence surrounding female contributors is finally being dispelled in 2018. It is true that this should have already happened, but at the end of the day, a victory is still a victory no matter how small. All that’s left to do now is to carry on the fight for equality with any occasion we get.

About Alex Moore'

Alex Moore is a psychology undergraduate and lifestyle blogger. He deeply appreciates the contributions of women to modern society and seeks to promote their initiatives.

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