chapter  4
12 Pages

Army Opinions about Women in the Army

WithJudith Hicks Stiehm

Twice a year the Army surveys its troops on a wide range of issues. In the Fall of 1994 an interesting set of questions was asked related to Army women. Specifically, soldiers were asked to state the extent to which they agreed or disagreed with statements like “Women should be assigned to any specialties for which they can pass a test to qualify.” At the time of the survey, legislation had recently been passed by Congress and signed by the President to permit women to serve on combat ships and in combat aircraft. If the data were crucially important to planning leadership initiatives, equally reliable and valid data could have been obtained from a much smaller sample. However, there is no evidence that the data were ever analyzed and then used to improve programs and/or policies. The differences between the opinions of women and men are large and consistent.