Yes, men do earn more than women on average, but not that much more when they work the same job and they have similar experience and abilities. Take a look at what PayScale has discovered about the gender pay gap.
Difference in Annual Pay: To compare male and female pay on a level playing field, we found the median pay for all men in a given job, as well as breakdowns of important compensable factors such as years of experience, location, education level, etc. Then, using PayScale's proprietary MarketMatch™ Algorithm, we determined what the female median pay would be using the exact same blend of compensable factors as our control male group.
What we created was an apples-to-apples comparison of what men and women make, all other factors held equal, according to actual market data. For example, the male software developer median, annual salary is $65,700, which is 4 percent more than the median female value of $63,300.
Percent Growth in Pay: To determine the percent growth in pay, we first found the median, annual pay for both male and female college graduates at the age of 22. These pay values were different for men and women, but served as a baseline for relative pay growth. At each age specified in the chart, the "Wage Growth" indicates the increase in annual pay compared to the baseline pay values found for 22 year old men and women.
For example, at age 30, both men and women have experienced a wage growth of almost exactly 60 percent, meaning the typical man would be earning $65,300 (compared to their baseline of $40,800) and the typical woman would be earning $51,000 (compared to their baseline of $31,900).
Common Jobs for Men and Women: To determine common jobs for men and women, we consulted the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to find the largest job families in the country as measured by total employment. Additionally, we focused on those job families that typically require at least a bachelor's degree.
For each of the top 30 job families, we found the most popular individual job title, and singled out jobs where at least 85 percent of workers male (male-dominated jobs) or 85 percent of workers are female (female-dominated jobs). In this manner, we found jobs that are not only common in terms of overall employment, but are also predominately held by one gender or the other.
For each common job, we found the median pay for all employees with fewer than 5 years of experience and all employees with 20 – 25 years of experience. These pay figures represent the pay for both men and women combined in each job title, and are not designed to show the differences (if any) in pay by gender for a given job title; instead the median pay figures show the expected pay growth for any employee in jobs that are commonly held by men or women, to illustrate tendencies in earning potential.
Percentages of men and women for each job were determined using PayScale data.