College Educated Women are More Likely to Vote

Dr. Thad Hall, Professor of Political Science, University of Utah

Among those most likely to vote nationally and in Utah are college educated women.  In fact, the percentage of women who register and vote increases with every level of educational attainment.

In figures 1 and 2, we see interesting national patterns of participation based on educational attainment.  Note in figure 1 that roughly half of women with less than a high school diploma register to vote.  High school graduates take the rate up to 66.6%, and those with some college register at an even higher rate of 77.2%.  As education level increases, the percentage of women who register to vote does as well, culminating in over 80% of women with Bachelor’s degrees or above who register.

A similar pattern holds for voting rates.  Women with more education are more likely to vote.  In figure 2, we see that women whose highest education is a high school diploma vote at a rate of 57.8% compared to 77.7% of women with Bachelor’s degrees.  That is a roughly 20 point difference.  Women with at least some college show a rate of 70.2%, and the rate jumps up to 77.7%, as noted, for those who complete their Bachelor’s degree.  At every level of increasing education, a higher percentage of women vote.

   

The Bottom Line.  With the exception of the lowest category, women in general are active voters and become increasingly active at higher levels of education.  States with high percentages of college graduates benefit from a more civically aware and engaged population.