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Smart Women More Likely to Tie the Knot

Think it seems like the whole world is full of smart-and-savvy women skipping the altar to stay single? Not so according to recent research. Following a brief slowing trend among degree-qualified women reluctant to settle down, the tide has turned.

Though educated girls in their twenties do have a series of entertaining and short-lived relationships, by the time their 30s roll around they're marching down the aisle in record numbers. According to the study, the numbers of women with degrees who are married by the time they are 30 to 35 is higher than those without. By about 30, 61 percent of the women with a degree were married, compared with only 53 percent of women with no higher education qualifications.

One of the researchers said,

"There's something new going on, particularly among women. It's long been assumed that more educated women are less traditional and more financially independent and are therefore less likely to need to or want to marry. And indeed, this assumption has been borne out in the data for a long time. But now. . . we can see that in fact the pattern has reversed so that women with post-school qualifications, especially those with degrees, are now in fact more likely to be married than their counterparts with less education."

Does this surprise you? Do you know tons of smart women getting hitched?

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Join The Conversation
Bettyesque Bettyesque 9 years
Hmmm this is really interesting. Well Im almost 30 and in college but right now I happy with the way things are. I see all of my friends pressing there BF's to just get married already and I am the exact opposite. Its not that I dont want to one day, but I am just not ready. We are both Analysts both smart both want the same things ... just not that .. not yet.....:)
shanimalcracker shanimalcracker 9 years
It makes complete sense why "smart women" seem to marry in flocks by their 30s because this is often the time that these women have attained their higher degree of choice and have had a little time to find stability in their careers. We definitely live in a society in which women are finally starting to think about their needs and about increasing their human capital. A lot of you are referencing personal anecdotes about marrying earlier or having many educated female friends who married early; however, we need to consider these demographics on a macro scale since I'm sure we all know that personal stories definitely don't always match up to the specified population as a whole. In terms of the statistic that women who are more educated tend to have higher divorce rates, such a figure also is not surprising. Consider the fact that if women who are educated are marrying often, there is a higher pool of women that might be getting divorced. Also, women who are more educated might be more modern in their way of thinking (as women being highly educated isn't exactly within the most traditional school of thought) and may be more financially stable, keeping them from the "necessity" of staying married when things are working out quite as well
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Marriage is much more difficult now than when my mom and dad got married. Back then, the mom was in charge of the house, and dad was in charge of making the money. Everyone accepted that and expected the husband and wife to do their jobs. Most marriages IMO fail because of a lack of communication as to what jobs are going to be whose responsibility, especially since both partners are now working. In my family, I am now the one who does most of the cooking and caregiving to the kids, and my wife has the responsibility to make the money. It's been difficult, but when we communicate effectively, we are able to take care of all the household responibilities....
Colleeninator Colleeninator 9 years
I think you may have something there, kia. I don't think being educated impairs a woman's ability to stay in a healthy relationship (in fact, I believe the contrary), but traditional gender roles go all topsy-turvy when women are professionals AND wives. But, I can say right now, that I think the trend is starting to turn like this post says it is. I'm currently a college student, and there are plenty of super-conservative young folks out there (who would have thought?) that think that the culmination of their life is to get married and have children. It's weird, and not at all what I would have expected, but there it is. Annnnd, I also agree with you, pop. You can only learn so much by looking at one statistic. That's where sociologists come in.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
This is a test. My comments for some reason are not showing up.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
Interesting, I've been hearing since the early 90's that educated women are choosing to wait long to get married and start a family. I've also heard a lot of couples in general are begining to opt for life partnership rather than official marriage.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
I've been hearing since the early 90's that educated white collar women have been waiting later to get married, but I've never heard about them by passing the nuptials all together. Now I have noticed a growing trend among people in general to simply have life partnerships but I don't think that relegated to educated women in particular.
zeze zeze 9 years
Okay, I have a different view on this. This study is ignoring the fact that other issues are at play here. Uneducated women are more likely to be poor women, poor women are more likely to have children out of wedlock and never get married, because marriage is somewhat of a statement, its usually big and expensive, and those who can't afford college can't afford and start to lose interest in a marriage. I think I remember some stats that said African American women were the least married and most likely to fall below the poverty line, so I thin education is an extension of that. Not to mention the more "well off" a person is in terms of money and education the more they want the storybook life and marriage is a big part of that.
jopperma jopperma 9 years
Men want to marry smart women is what I say!! I am graduating from law school in two weeks and getting married in October... and I would say that I am not getting married to have someone to take care of me, so I am not sure me being "smart" has anything to do with my marriage decision. Amazingly enough I think I can manage to be educated and independant AND married.
julieulie julieulie 9 years
I'm in my early-to-mid 20s, working towards my Ph.D., and getting married in a month. But I don't think getting married has anything at all to do with that "need" to marry despite being less traditional and more financially independent. I, by no means, feel the NEED to get married, but I also think it would be a waste to have found this great guy and just throw him out with the garbage just because I am independent. With the talk above about more educated women being more likely to wind up in divorce because they don't confirm to the traditional gender roles -- education and tradition are not mutually exclusive. Yes, I am a woman and I am a scientist, but I also exclusively do all the cooking/cleaning/laundry etc. in our household. You can be a modern, independent, educated woman -- and still act like a housewife!
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
I think looking at marriage rates for a particular age group only tells you so much.
raciccarone raciccarone 9 years
I blame th failure of my first two marriages when my wives took to book learnin', so I'm going to have to agree with you there.
bengalspice bengalspice 9 years
I know tons of girls from my alma mater that are married now when the stereotype had always been that graduates from women's college are more likely to chase an advance degree rather than chase after a husband.
megnmac megnmac 9 years
I'm a lawyer, and I got married at 22. Super young, but I'd been w/ my husband for a while and it just worked out that way... I know a lot of really educated women, and a lot of them are married. I think every marriage just needs to reinvest in itself, and women who are pursuing careers can be just as guilty as the men who came before to get too involved in the career and forget to come home on time... and men haven't been trained to just shut up and appreciate it (haha!) - which is a good thing. I think we're just all still working out how to be gender roles in a society where men and women work, the working part works, but the home part needs some breakthroughs (my husband cooks and cleans, but I still need to remember that it is ok and I'm not failing us when I don't domesticate)...
KrisSugar KrisSugar 9 years
yup Kia, that's exactly where I saw it. :) I agree with your statement about traditional gender roles. I've learned that in my 20's. Whether or not you feel you can do anything in the universe by yourself (like renovating a condo for instance) you have to let them feel manly, and I think that's crucial in making a relationship work. Although, it was really hard for me because i was ENJOYING demolishing my bathroom tile with a sledgehammer when I sliced open my knuckles, and had to let the nearest man take over. sigh. Then, I realized how nice it was to be cared for, and that if I played it right that man would also carry all the debris out to the garbage. hooray!
kia kia 9 years
I am part of this statistic here. Kris and Colleen here is a heads up on where you may have seen that higher divorce rate stat ( In my experience men eventually want more traditional gender roles no matter how progressive they seem when they start a relationship and it is not always both partners going for that goal.
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
KrisSugar KrisSugar 9 years
I read that statistic too Colleeninator. I think it's pretty hard to lump people into categories.
Colleeninator Colleeninator 9 years
Interesting. I've also read (don't ask me where, I couldn't say) that the more educated a woman is, the more statistically likely her marriage is to fail.
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