ERIC Number: ED311783
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987
The Ph.D. Trap.
This critical appraisal of North American doctoral programs contends that the degree is a seriously flawed academic institution. Recent scholarship and personal experiences are utilized to illustrate the contention that doctoral programs are inflexible, cumbersome, restrictive and wasteful, and, in most fields, do more harm than good. The history of the Ph.D. degree is traced, with an emphasis on the Canadian experience, and three major problems are identified: the length of time such programs take, the paucity of successful candidates, and rewards that are not commensurate with the time, energy and money involved in obtaining the degree. The crisis is considered to be particularly acute in the social sciences and humanities, partly because of variant and imprecise methodologies that delay doctoral committees and doctoral candidates. Because of the values and skills required to succeed in such programs, they may, it is felt, be undermining scholarly excellence. Three appendices are provided: a summary of the most recent findings (subsequent to the first printing of the book), "The Grad School Numbers Game" (a comment on costs and enrollments), and "The Rejuvenated Mastership." References are provided at the conclusion of each chapter. (KM)
Descriptors: Doctoral Degrees, Doctoral Dissertations, Doctoral Programs, Educational History, Higher Education, Humanities, Intellectual Disciplines, Research Methodology, Sciences, Social Sciences, Time
Medicine Label Press, Rural Route #2, West Bay, Nova Scotia B0E 3K0, Canada ($10.95 plus $2.55 for shipping).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Books
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A