Slight Decline in Number of Philosophy PhDs


451 PhDs in philosophy were awarded in the United States in 2014, marking a modest decrease from the 494 of the previous year. Here are the numbers for the period from 2004-2014:

phds philosophy awarded graph 3.jpg

These numbers are from the U.S. federal government’s Survey of Earned Doctorates. (Thanks to Robert Townsend, Director of the Washington Office of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, for bringing them to my attention.)

 

 

guest
8 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
recent grad
recent grad
5 years ago

And there are how many TT jobs this year?Report

Grad Sockpuppet
Grad Sockpuppet
5 years ago

Around 80.Report

Tom Hurka
Tom Hurka
5 years ago

People who finished their PhD in the peak year of 2012 will have enrolled in the PhD when? in 2006? or 2005? As I recall, the job market wasn’t bad then and the number of PhDs being graduated was, at least compared to now, low. It shows how difficult it can be to make decisions about graduate study by looking at market conditions at the time of enrollment.Report

DC
DC
Reply to  Tom Hurka
5 years ago

You also have to look at the aggregate study population. Even if it looks like the trends are good (fewer PhDs, more TT jobs every year for a multi-year period), the chances of getting a TT job are still steadily declining because the surplus of PhDs from years past has been increasing, even if it’s increasing at a smaller rate.Report

Carolyn
Carolyn
5 years ago

I just checked the APDA database (which includes graduates from outside the U.S.), and it looks like in the database we have 2009: 211 graduates, 2010: 275 graduates, 2011: 426 graduates, 2012: 517 graduates, 2013: 450 graduates, 2014: 444 graduates, 2015: 243 graduates, 2016 or expected: 72 graduates (plus around 1000 who graduated prior to 2009 and around 300 whose graduation year is unknown). Since we started collecting data in 2012 it makes sense that there is a drop off prior to that year. Also, since 2015 is still in progress, it makes sense that we don’t have a complete set for 2015 and beyond. But it does seem like there is a peak in 2012, in keeping with the SED data. In any case, it is useful to have a sense of the U.S. numbers for the sake of comparison with our database, so thanks!Report

Michael Kremer
Michael Kremer
5 years ago

Grad Sockpuppet:
Look at http://www.newappsblog.com/2015/10/tracking-the-job-market-a-start.html#more
The numbers have ranged from 245 to 296 over the last three years. The figure for this year up to 10/1 is 109, which is a sharp decline and would seem to predict a total around 200, but we shall have to see.Report

anon
anon
5 years ago

Michael, those numbers are wrong, at least if you’re suggesting those are the TT numbers. Are you perhaps looking at the numbers of TT jobs *plus* post-docs? The graph in your link shows that the highest number of TT jobs in a recent single year was 163 jobs (that was 2013). So far this year, at least as of the updating of that graph, there are 109 TT positions. In no year listed did the numbers of TT jobs get to the 200s.Report

Grad Sockpuppet
Grad Sockpuppet
5 years ago

Philjobs currently has 72 TT jobs for this year. I’ve found a few advertised only elsewhere, but not many.

PhilJobs does have 148 total jobs, however, and I’ve found several non-TT jobs not advertised there. But, as anon points out, that number also includes some adjunct positions, postdocs, and VAPs. Seems a bit late for 50-100 TT jobs to materialize, though. They’ve trickled in really slowly for weeks now.Report