Phoenix, AZ-There has been a long-held belief that men preferred wives with less education than themselves. That marriages, where the wife had an education on par with her husband’s, were doomed to fail. But that isn’t the case anymore as a new study shows that instead of a wife’s higher education leading to divorce it can actually give their marriage longevity.

There was a time when men sought out less-educated wives, but those days are no more. Lead researcher for the study, Christine Schwartz, an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, found that notion was  based on research conducted prior to the 1980s, a time when women were completing college at a higher rate than men, according to PsychCentral.

So, Schwartz and fellow researcher Hongyun Han examine data from the National Survey of Family Growth and the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to determine if the dynamic had shifted, and  found that, indeed, it had. From 1990 and beyond, a wife’s educational advantage over her husband no longer predicted divorce, even when her education exceeded her husband’s.

Schwartz said the “findings [of the study] are in line with a shift from breadwinner/ homemaker model to a more egalitarian model.” She says the study suggests that is “now more common for wives to have more education than their husbands.”

The study found that of couples married between 2005 and 2009, 60 percent of wives were more educated than their husbands, a 35 percent increase over the early 1950s, PsychCentral reported.

So it would seem a woman’s education is no longer a disadvantage and may actually prevent divorce. Schwartz said modern couples are no longer “doggedly adhering to norms that wives should have lower status than men.” According to the study, couples married between 2000 and 2004 who have the same level of education were one-third less likely to divorce, PsychCentral reported.

Schwartz along with Han examined data from 1950 to 2004 to reach their conclusions. The study entitled “The Reversal of the Gender Gap in Education and Trends in Martial Dissolution” was published in American Sociological Review,

This study means that women no longer have to fear that their education will make them more likely to divorce. In the time when 4 out of ten family breadwinners are women this study shows that women can have their education, and marriage too. But that doesn’t mean divorces won’t be in the cards for some couples, highly educated or not, statistics show that close to 30 percent of marriages end in divorce.

If you find your marriage can’t be salvaged and dissolution is inevitable, you can turn to one of our gifted divorce attorneys to guide you through the process.

Divorce is not simple issue by any means, it’s a complicated process. Reaching agreeable child custody arrangements and dividing marital assets can be difficult, even for highly educated spouses. These are pragmatic issues that can be emotionally charged and very personal, so personal that it can in a spouse’s best interest to enlist the services of a divorce attorney to help decide these matters.