Toward Improving Ph. D. Programs

By Ernest V. Hollis | Go to book overview

IV
Suggestions from Lay Employers of Ph.D. Graduates

THE GRADUATE SCHOOL officials who cooperated with the Commission on Teacher Education in analyzing the employment status of the decade's Ph.D. recipients, thought that further leads for strengthening their programs might be obtained from the judgments of those most concerned with the professional value of the degree. They accordingly asked for a study of the opinion of employers of their product and likewise of the degree holders themselves. They were eager to know how effective doctoral training was considered in preparing for scholarly careers in socially significant work.

In this chapter and the two that follow it the results are presented of an attempt to comply with this request. After a brief overview of the steps taken to secure a representative sampling of relevant judgment, the current chapter is devoted to statements secured from employers in nonacademic fields. These have to do with the training held to be most needed at the doctoral level for increasing the chances of success in research and related positions open in government and private industry. Chapter V presents the opinion of selected appointing officers in collegiate and precollegiate educational. institutions of many kinds with regard to the preparation required for discharging the major duties commonly assigned to staff members. Chapter VI provides a glimpse of graduate study through the eyes of recent recipients of the Ph.D. degree. The material for the three chapters was secured through a series of conferences, questionnaires, and visits to individual graduate schools. These will be described briefly at this point and elaborated as necessary in the appropriate sections of the discussion.

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