Indicator

Debt and Doctoral Study in the Humanities

Share

Funding for doctoral study comes from a variety of sources, but one of the long-term costs of a Ph.D. is measured in education-related debt. The Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) reveals that new humanities and arts Ph.D.’s are more likely to have accumulated graduate-education debt than graduates in general. Humanities and arts Ph.D.’s are also more likely to accumulate high levels of debt than their counterparts in most STEM fields.

(Note: These indicators present data for Ph.D.’s in both the humanities and the arts, which the National Science Foundation’s National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics combine in its public reporting of findings from the SED. But because the humanities confers substantially more Ph.D.’s each year than the fine/performing arts, the SED provides useful insight about the state of doctoral education in the humanities.)

Copy link

* Life sciences includes agricultural sciences and natural resources; biological and biomedical sciences; and health sciences.

Source: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Doctorate Recipients from U.S. Universities: 2020 (Data Tables), Table 38, https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/doctorates/ (accessed 2/15/2022). Data presented by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Humanities Indicators (www.humanitiesindicators.org).

The data on which this indicator is based are collected as part of the federal Survey of Earned Doctorates, a national census of recently graduated doctorate recipients.

This indicator looks only at graduate study debt, although the SED also collects data on debt from undergraduate study.

Copy link

* Life sciences includes agricultural sciences and natural resources; biological and biomedical sciences; and health sciences.

** Included mathematics and computer science in 2004.

 Source: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Doctorate Recipients from U.S. Universities (Data Tables; years 2014, 2015, and 2020), Table 39, https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/doctorates/ (accessed 2/15/2022). Data analyzed and presented by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Humanities Indicators (www.humanitiesindicators.org).

The data on which this indicator is based are collected as part of the federal Survey of Earned Doctorates, a national census of recently graduated doctorate recipients.

This indicator looks only at graduate study debt, although the SED also collects data on debt from undergraduate study.

Copy link

* Life sciences includes agricultural sciences and natural resources; biological and biomedical sciences; and health sciences.

 Source: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Doctorate Recipients from U.S. Universities: 2020 (Data Tables), Table 39, https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/doctorates/ (accessed 2/15/2022). Data analyzed and presented by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Humanities Indicators (www.humanitiesindicators.org).

The data on which this indicator is based are collected as part of the federal Survey of Earned Doctorates, a national census of recently graduated doctorate recipients.

This indicator looks only at graduate study debt, although the SED also collects data on debt from undergraduate study.

Copy link

* Includes only those new Ph.D.’s who are US citizens or permanent residents.

Source: National Science Foundation, National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Doctorate Recipients from U.S. Universities: 2020 (Data Tables), Table 41, https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/doctorates/ (accessed 2/15/2022). Data analyzed and presented by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Humanities Indicators (www.humanitiesindicators.org).

The data on which this indicator is based are collected as part of the federal Survey of Earned Doctorates, a national census of recently graduated doctorate recipients.

This indicator looks only at graduate study debt, although the SED also collects data on debt from undergraduate study.

Back to Humanities Indicators
Share