In this blog post I provide some detailed, up-to-date information about two philosophy PhD programs. This week's picks are University of California, Irvine and Institut Jean Nicod. These programs were chosen randomly, using an app called "Pickster." (Next week's picks are listed at the bottom of this post.) This information comes from the APDA database, and was updated by my research assistant, Anna Durbin, using the program's placement page and what she could find online. The running tally includes select numbers from all of the programs covered so far.
- Jean Nicod and Irvine are similarly sized programs, with 30-40 graduates in the past 8 years
- It was difficult to find information about the current employment of many graduates from Jean Nicod, limiting what we can report
- Yet, both programs appear to have below average permanent academic placement, and Irvine has below average student ratings
- Both programs have higher than average diversity numbers; Jean Nicod for gender and race/ethnicity, Irvine for race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status
- Jean Nicod students tend to focus on topics within Science, Logic, and Math
Overall placement, 2012-present
Irvine had 33 PhD graduates in this period, whereas Jean Nicod had 39. Of Irvine's 33 graduates, 28 went into academic or unknown employment, and they placed 7 of these into tenure-track or other permanent academic positions (25%), with 1 of these in a program that offers a PhD in philosophy (4%). Jean Nicod placed 7 of 36 into permanent academic positions (19%), with 3 in philosophy programs with a PhD (8%).
Of Irvine's other graduates, 6 are in postdoctoral or fellowship positions, 11 have other temporary academic placements, 5 are in nonacademic positions, and 4 have no or unknown placement.
Of Jean Nicod's other graduates, 11 are in postdoctoral or fellowship positions, 6 have other temporary positions, 3 are in nonacademic positions, and 12 have no or unknown placement.
The average salary of Irvine graduates is $55,250 and 89% preferred an academic job, whereas too few Jean Nicod graduates provided salary or job preference information to report.
The current database values for all 2012 and later graduates now in permanent academic positions, out of those in academic positions overall, is 42%, with 14% in programs that offer a PhD in philosophy.
Areas of Specialization, by Category
Including all past and current students in the APDA database, 29% of Irvine students are in LEMM, 26% are in Value Theory, 39% are in History and Traditions, and 5% are in Science, Logic and Math. 35% of Jean Nicod students are in LEMM, 3% are in Value Theory, 2% are in History and Traditions, and 60% are in Science, Logic, and Math. For Irvine, an equal number of graduates 2012 onward placed into permanent academic positions were in LEMM, Value Theory, and History and Traditions (29% each), whereas the majority of those from Jean Nicod were in Science, Logic, and Math (86%).
Note that the current database values for all past graduates and current students are 28% in LEMM, 34% in Value Theory, 24% in History and Traditions, and 14% in Science, Logic, and Math.
Including all past graduates and current students, 24% of those from Irvine are women, as are 44% of Jean Nicod students.
The current database percentage is 31% for all past graduates and current students.
Including all past graduates and current students, 24% of those who answered questions about race and ethnicity from Irvine and 25% from Jean Nicod identified as something other than White, non-Hispanic.
13% is the overall proportion reported by APDA in 2017. The percentage from the Diversity and Inclusivity survey is 14%. The current database percentage is 20%, but this is likely inflated relative to the true population due to some of our data gathering efforts.
40% of those from Irvine were first generation college students, but too few Jean Nicod students provided this information to report.
The percentage of all survey respondents who are first generation college students is 23.4%, compared to 31% for all United States doctoral degree recipients in 2015.
(Students from Irvine and Jean Nicod did not provide any public comments on how philosophy could be more inclusive.)
In response to the question: "How likely would you be to recommend the program from which you obtained or will obtain your PhD to prospective philosophy students?" past and current Irvine students selected "neither likely nor unlikely" (3.4, n=10). (Too few Jean Nicod students answered this or the following questions to report.)
"Somewhat likely," 4.0, is the average rating reported in 2017. The current database overall average is the same, with an average of 3.7 for teaching, 3.9 for research, and 3.7 for financial support.
In response to: "Rate your satisfaction with the advice and preparation this program provides to its graduate students for undergraduate teaching," Irvine students selected "satisfied" (4.2, n=5).
In response to: "Rate your satisfaction with the advice and preparation this program provides to its graduate students for academic research," Irvine students selected "satisfied" (4.2, n=5).
In response to: "Rate your satisfaction with the financial support this program provides for its graduate students, Irvine students selected "satisfied" (4.4, n=5).
(Note that these comments primarily come from current students and recent graduates, but in some cases may be from non-recent graduates.)
Irvine students one provided public comment on the program overall:
Actually, I would only recommend it now because the faculty has substantially improved since I graduated.
(One non-public comment from students at Irvine mentioned harassment, but it was not clear if it was of a sexual nature.)
Jean Nicod students likewise provided two public comments on the program overall:
Interdisciplinary program. Good teachers and researchers.
The research environment is very stimulating, with talks and seminars on relevant topics every week
Next week I hope to look at New York University and University of Utah. Feedback is welcome, at firstname.lastname@example.org.