Are you a recent doctoral degree recipient in the sociology profession? What has been your experience with seeking positions at the assistant or open rank level? Have you interviewed for academic sociology positions whose preferred expertise differs from your area(s) of study? Do your experiences match our findings? Share your thoughts and stimulate a discussion with others in the field through our blog.
Results from ASA’s fourth job market survey suggest that the job market for recently-graduated sociology PhDs is improving, with the number of available jobs approaching pre-Great Recession years. In 2011, we saw a larger number of open specialties being advertised in the ASA Job Bank than in 2010, and almost 90 percent of advertised positions were for assistant or open rank professorships. The 2011-2012 Job Bank survey also quantified the top five most-frequent and least-frequent advertised areas of specialization in position advertisements, and enumerated the types of non-sociology academic departments that advertised for sociologists in 2011.
The findings from the 2011-2012 study are cause for cautious optimism among new sociology PhDs, though we note that the “overhang” of unplaced or under-placed sociology scholars resulting from the Great Recession (since 2008) is likely to create challenging conditions for recently-graduated PhDs in the field.