How to spot gender and education bias in a job advert

A job advert can reveal quite a lot about whether an employer holds any biased views. Photo: Getty
A job advert can reveal quite a lot about whether an employer holds any biased views. Photo: Getty

Job hunting is a challenging process. Not only is it time-consuming, it’s also tricky to determine whether a position is for you simply from the description alone. Sometimes, you’ll need to get to the interview stage before you can find out more about the employer and the workplace culture.

That being said, a job advert can give away more than an employer realises. And more specifically, it can reveal quite a lot about whether they hold any biased views — unconscious or otherwise — on gender, education, class and other characteristics. So how can you spot the red flags in a job advert?

Be wary of a long list of desired skills and expected experience

Of course, some jobs require specific skills or more experience than others. But an unreasonably long list

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The blind spot which must be tackled



a person sitting at a table


© Hong Kong Free Press


By Ivan Chou and Joseph Yau.

Parallel to the Covid-19 pandemic is an education crisis of unprecedented proportions. A research team in the United States has projected that students will learn about 30 per cent less in reading and 50 per cent less in mathematics than in a normal school year.

In Hong Kong, under our learning-from-home policy, 90 per cent of teachers have reported that they are falling behind schedule. The Examination Authority, aware of the disruption, has reduced the assessment load for most subjects in the DSE exam.



a group of people in a room: Photo: May James/HKFP.


© Hong Kong Free Press
Photo: May James/HKFP.

The Hong Kong government, to its credit, has implemented measures to tackle the problems arising from home-learning. It has paid particular attention to the hardware problem among disadvantaged students and has helped teachers transition into online teaching through seminars and a digital resource centre.

However, there

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