Number of new US science PhDs falls for first time in seven years

Friday 2 December 2011

Naturejobs | by Rachel Bowden on Nov 23, 2011

The number of science doctorates awarded in the United States fell by 1% in 2010, ending a seven-year run of annual increases.

The new figures from the National Science Foundation (NSF) also show that in the decade from 2000 to 2010, the number of PhDs in agricultural sciences and psychology both fell by more than 5% - whereas all other major science fields saw an increase in the number of PhDs.

Other key figures include the following:

  • Between 2005 and 2010, there was a 29% increase in the number of women receiving a science or engineering (S&E) PhD - more than double the increase seen for men (13%)
  • The share of S&E PhDs awarded to women increased from 38% in 2005 to 41% in 2010
  • The share of S&E PhDs awarded to US citizens and permanent residents who identify themselves as members of a minority group rose from 22% in 2005 to 24% in 2010

On the Web : Read on Nature

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