More women are 'marrying down,' at least in education, study finds

  • Updated: February 13, 2014 - 7:49 PM

A record number of American women are “marrying down,” tying the knot with a husband who is less educated than they are, according to a new study.

Nearly 21 percent of married women in 2012 were better educated than their spouses, a threefold jump from 1960, according to the Pew Research Center. By contrast, a bit less than 20 percent of men had more formal education than their wives.

In the more than half-century that Pew has tracked the issue, this is the first time that a higher percentage of women than men have married down.

The dynamic is due partly to the well-chronicled fact that women have surpassed men in college graduation rates in the past two decades.

Among college-educated newlyweds, 39 percent of women pledged their undying devotion to a non-grad. Only 26 percent of men did the same.

Even with their superior education, however, women aren’t necessarily marrying down when it comes to income, according to the report. About 58 percent of better-educated women earned less than their husbands. Only 39 percent of women earned a higher salary.

Los Angeles Times

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