April 18, 2013
The ASA Department of Research has released its 2012-2013 analysis of salary trend data for the academic sociology profession and other social sciences. Among our findings: average annual faculty salary changes between Academic Year (AY) 2011/12 and AY 2012/13 show slow or no growth in salaries at public institutions, compared to private institutions.
FACULTY: What happened in the past academic year to salaries at your institution? Why?
March 26, 2013
Recently, a number of academic sociology department chairs expressed to us a desire for the deans of their schools to further develop their understanding of the sociology discipline and coursework. The ASA Department of Research is here to help.
Sociology is relevant to helping undergrads cultivate social science research skills, develop a better understanding of their lives, and make decisions about careers or future graduate study. It also has an interdisciplinary nature, which brings a wealth of subject matter and technical approaches to several different disciplines such as engineering and even medicine.
ASA’s Research Department conducts large- and small-scale surveys of academic sociologists and sociology students, providing information about satisfaction with the sociology major, profiles of and trends in sociology departments, demographic information (e.g., addressing race and gender) in the profession and discipline, and other vital data. The bulk of its work culminates in freely-available research and data briefs that can be downloaded from our web site.
Help us to inform the dean of your school/college of sociology’s role in life and work. If you are a faculty member of a freestanding or joint department that offers a sociology major, please submit the name and email address of your school’s dean using the form below. Information submitted through our blog is transmitted securely and will never appear on this blog site. In turn, we will share with them timely and relevant information to them (via a single email message), such as links to our various research and data briefs on the profession, and other critical findings of interest. If they wish to receive further information or future updates from us, we will provide them with that option.
Should you have questions about this endeavor, please contact Robert Spalter-Roth, Director of the Department of Research, at email@example.com.
March 15, 2013
The following table is taken from our latest research brief, Social Capital for Sociology Majors: Applied Activities and Peer Networks, which is based on our 2012 longitudinal study, Social Capital, Organizational Capital, and the Job Market for New Sociology Graduates.
This table summarizes the activities listed on six sociology departments’ websites that provided easily retrievable information on activities beyond the classroom. We share this information to provide a sense of the substance behind the survey response of sociology department chairs that their departments provide “a great deal” of emphasis on application and peer networks, and to provide other departments with examples of how they might organize their own websites if they wish to promote these types of activities. Please click on the table to view it at full size.
Sample of Sociology Departments’ Websites Promoting Career Information
February 20, 2013
A AAAS interview with economist Dr. Stephan points out that the biomedical sciences are overproducing PhDs for the research positions available inside and outside the academy and have been for some time. According to Dr. Stephan’s research, many biomedical science PhDs do not perform work for which they have been trained.
Considering that sociologists–although more than capable of interdisciplinary work–are not necessarily encouraged to perform such work (especially in light of the discipline’s concern with disciplinary identity), how will graduate education need to change to prepare students to seek out and perform interdisciplinary research?
What kind of interdisciplinary work are you being trained to do? Tell us whether you’re a PhD candidate or a postdoctoral position holder.
We thank L. Williams of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute for contributing to this blog posting.
February 15, 2013
Are sociology PhDs seeking postdoctoral positions to become more competitive on the job market? What have been the effects on your career of different types of postdocs including sociology, interdisciplinary, research, teaching? Do you think that a postdoc is a necessary step in a PhD career trajectory?
View ASA’s latest data brief: Postdoctorates: Another Stage in the Sociology Pipeline?
Read and comment about this here at our blog site and view our latest data brief: Postdoctorates: Another Stage in the Sociology Pipeline?
January 31, 2013
Interested in a postdoctoral position? Watch for the ASA Research Department’s forthcoming analysis of the types of postdocs that are available to sociologists.
January 23, 2013
Contrary to what we all hear and say anecdotally, women and men academics in some disciplines advance to full professor at the same rate. Data from the American Historical Association’s (AHA) 2010 Career Paths survey indicate that academic historians reach full professor in the same amount of average time, regardless of gender (Townsend 2013). The differences, however, were found in the different pathways that lead women and men to the upper ranks of academia.
Townsend attempted to explain this discrepancy by not only looking at the total time it took to advance, but also the number of years between each rank, how marriage and/or family and childcare issues affected promotion, amount of time spent on professional activities, amount of productivity, and other factors. Townsend found that married male historians in this sample were promoted faster than women who were married. And although women survey respondents reported spending more time on child and other family care than men reported, the amount of time they each spent on professional activities was the same. Although there was no direct comparison of the mothers and fathers in this sample, mothers moved through the ranks faster than women who did not have children. Data from an ASA survey of the 1996/97 cohort of sociologists support this notion (Spalter-Roth and Van Vooren 2012).
Is this true across disciplines? A forthcoming study from ASA’s 2012 Time in Rank survey of full and associate professors in sociology will further explore this question, including whether there is a significant difference between the amount of time it takes men and women sociologists to advance to full professor. As we examine the data from the Time in Rank survey of sociologists, we will look at these and other factors to uncover the pathways men and women take to reach full professor and the different challenges they overcome in order to do that.
The ASA’s–as well as the AHA’s studies–are based on responses to questionnaires. What would you add to such as study? Comment below and share your thoughts with us.