Study Claims Grades Of Attractive Females Declined When Classes Moved Online During Pandemic

Study Grades Of Attractive Females Declined When Classes Went Remote


A new study published in the journal Economic Letters claims the grades of attractive female students declined when teaching was conducted remotely during the pandemic.

According to the study, there is a relationship between college students’ appearance and their grades in classes with significant teacher–student interaction. This applies to both male and female students, but the grades of attractive females went down when the courses were moved online.

“When education is in-person, attractive students receive higher grades in non-quantitative subjects, in which teachers tend to interact more with students compared to quantitative courses,” the research paper reads. “This finding holds both for males and females. When instruction moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic, the grades of attractive female students deteriorated in non-quantitative subjects. However, the beauty premium persisted for males, suggesting that discrimination is a salient factor in explaining the grade beauty premium for females only.”

The benefit attractive female college students receive with in-person classes is negated when taught online

PsyPost reports…

The researcher obtained data from five different cohorts of engineering students from a Swedish university, resulting in a final sample of 307 students. Notably, students in two of these cohorts had attended a portion of their classes remotely when the COVID-19 pandemic pushed instruction online. The content of these courses stayed the same, but lectures and seminars were conducted online.

Although students were encouraged to turn their video cameras on during lessons, it was not required. To obtain an attractiveness score for each student, Mehic had an independent sample of 74 individuals rate the attractiveness of the students’ faces.

Interestingly, the effect was only present in non-quantitative courses like business and economics, but not found in quantitative courses such as math and physics. This is explained, according to the study, by the fact that non-quantitative classes tend to require more student-teacher interaction and and group work, while quantitative classes are more individual and test-based.

“As education moved online following the onset of the pandemic, the grades of attractive female students deteriorated,” wrote the author of the study, Adrian Mehic, a graduate student at Lund University. “This finding implies that the female beauty premium observed when education is in-person is likely to be chiefly a consequence of discrimination. On the contrary, for male students, there was still a significant beauty premium even after the introduction of online teaching. The latter finding suggests that for males in particular, beauty can be a productivity-enhancing attribute.”

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Before settling down at BroBible, Douglas Charles, a graduate of the University of Iowa (Go Hawks), owned and operated a wide assortment of websites. He is also one of the few White Sox fans out there and thinks Michael Jordan is, hands down, the GOAT.