ERIC Number: ED398785
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Achieving Faculty Diversity. Debunking the Myths.
Smith, Daryl G.
This study examined the reality of the experience of the labor market for new college faculty, especially faculty of color, and identified common myths in the academic labor market. Recipients (n=298) of prestigious graduate fellowships who had received their Ph.D.s since 1989 participated in telephone interviews about their job market experiences. Subjects included African Americans (26 percent), Asians and Pacific Islanders (4 percent), whites (35 percent), Latinos (32 percent), and American Indians (3 percent). Approximately half were women. Fields of study included the humanities, social sciences, sciences, education, and ethnic/gender studies. The study identified eight prototypes differentiated by the degree of employment choice and type of employment ultimately accepted. Most subjects, regardless of race or gender, were appointed to regular faculty positions (70 percent) or to postdoctoral positions appropriate to their fields (17 percent). Of those in faculty positions, 92 percent were appointed to regular tenure-track positions or faculty posts at Ivy League institutions that do not have tenure. The study's findings contradicted six common myths including: (1) faculty of color are so few that institutions must compete in the hiring process; (2) the scarcity of faculty of color in the sciences means that few are available and those that are available are in high demand; (3) scholars like those in this study are only interested in the most prestigious institutions, making it virtually impossible for other institutions to recruit them; (4) individuals are being continually recruited by wealthy and prestigious institutions having resources with which ordinary institutions cannot compete; (5) faculty of color are leaving academe altogether for more lucrative positions in government and industry; and (6) campuses are so focused on diversifying the faculty that heterosexual white males have no chance. (Contains 54 references.) (Author/CK)
Descriptors: American Indians, Asian Americans, Blacks, College Faculty, Doctoral Degrees, Employment Opportunities, Ethnic Studies, Faculty Recruitment, Fellowships, Higher Education, Hispanic Americans, Humanities Instruction, Interviews, Job Applicants, Labor Market, Minority Group Teachers, Science Instruction, Social Studies, Teacher Supply and Demand, Telephone Surveys, Whites
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Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Spencer Foundation, Chicago, IL.; Ford Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Association of American Colleges and Universities, Washington, DC.