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ERIC Number: EJ1085065
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
The Career Path of the Postdoctoral Researcher
Webber, Karen L.; Yang, Lijing
Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, v47 n6 p53-58 2015
The number of recipients in the United States with postdoctoral research appointments in American universities is greater now than ever before (NSF, 2010). According to data from the 2010 National Science Foundation's "Survey of Graduate Students and Postdoctorates in Science and Engineering" (GSS, 2010), academic institutions in the sciences and engineering (S&E) fields employed 63,415 postdoctoral researchers (postdocs), almost double the number in the mid-1990s. The largest increases in postdoc participation rates are in the life and physical sciences, although such appointments are expanding beyond S&E as well. Traditionally seen as a stepping-stone to a faculty career, acquisition of a postdoctoral research position is also supposed to lead to an increase in research productivity. However, the authors' recent examination of NSF's "Survey of Doctorate Recipients (SDR)" (Yang & Webber, 2015), found that while taking one postdoc leads to an increase in scholarly publications, multiple postdoc positions did not significantly contribute to a further increase in research productivity. In this study, the authors examined respondents who received their doctorate in 1997 or 1998 and who continuously participated in all the subsequent "SDR"s from 1999 through 2008. Further, they examined the early career choices of recent doctoral recipients, differences between doctoral recipients who took on postdocs and those who did not, and the benefits of completing the postdoctoral appointment. A list of resources is provided.
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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
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A