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Cracks in the Ivory TowerThe Moral Mess of Higher Education$
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Jason Brennan and Phillip Magness

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190846282

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190846282.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 August 2021

Why Universities Produce Too Many PhDs

Why Universities Produce Too Many PhDs

(p.186) 8 Why Universities Produce Too Many PhDs
Cracks in the Ivory Tower

Jason Brennan

Phillip Magness

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers the current glut of underemployed PhDs, especially in fields like English or modern languages. It asks: Why do so many programs continue to pump out new PhDs despite bad employment prospects? It suggests the reason for a humanities PhD glut is not that jobs are going away. Rather, jobs are mostly remaining stable or growing relative to the overall college population, but humanities departments over the past few decades have overproduced PhDs at even faster rates—rates that far exceeded the ability of the academy to employ them. The humanities are not the victims here; they are responsible for their own plight.

Keywords:   humanities, PhD, underemployment, higher education, job prospects

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