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ERIC Number: EJ1084262
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0729-4360
Postdoctoral Positions as Preparation for Desired Careers: A Narrative Approach to Understanding Postdoctoral Experience
Chen, Shuhua; McAlpine, Lynn; Amundsen, Cheryl
Higher Education Research and Development, v34 n6 p1083-1096 2015
Doing a "postdoc" following a doctorate is becoming more and more common worldwide as the pre-tenure job market continues shrinking in relation to the number of PhD graduates. Yet, behind statistics and descriptions of collective experience, how individuals experience the postdoctoral period is largely unknown, especially how they use this phase as preparation for future employment. Drawing on longitudinal data, this paper provides a close look at how seven postdoctoral scholars in life sciences from two Canadian universities intentionally prepared for their desired careers through day-to-day activities. The participants' daily activities were situated in three ways: intellectual, networking and institutional. It was found that they were all agentive in preparing for the future; yet, agency was exercised differently due to different institutional and personal contexts. The personal was found to be a significant factor that influenced their career preparations and decisions. This study addresses the gap in the literature regarding postdoctoral experiences and enriches our understanding about postdoctoral experience and training.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A