Posted by: clholoman | October 4, 2011

This Thing of Ours

Two interesting items on the professoriate or preparing therefor:

  • The president and executive director of the American Historical Association are calling on historians to recognize that Ph.D. students in history need to be actively prepared to take positions outside academia. The language is important–these should not be considered “alternative” career paths with the implication of second-class, fall back positions. This is a step beyond what I blogged about long ago–that Ph.D. programs need to be preparing their students to be effective teachers, since many of their graduates will not be at top tier research universities. Bravo to the authors for recognizing the problem (albeit, by their own admission, very late. Heck, I went back to graduate school in Political Science because the jobs in History were so few, and that was 30 years ago) and for calling for some pretty sweeping reform. On the other hand, one of the questions alluded to in the comments remains troubling: not what careers can Ph.D.s be considered qualified for, but for what careers outside academia is the Ph.D. the best preparation for?
  • This has been around a while, I guess, but it’s new to me. Don’t miss the last, two word line. And then scroll down to the bottom part of the page to read about the print version. Pretty cool. And, in fact, that site has a lot of good stuff on it. I think I shall add it to the blogroll.

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