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Career in Doctoral Studies

Sep 10, 2018 14:35 IST

Different Disciplines After Doctoral Studies

Career after PhD

It’s a common myth that PhD is a training based study module to become a university professor. Yes, it is true to an extent but the scope of PhD goes beyond academia. The proportion of PhDs joining academia is not very large as compared to the number of candidates having PhD degrees. The employment landscape in India and other international countries is changing drastically, and this has left PhD students to reshuffle their objective in joining academia. Now-a-days, PhD graduates are eyeing for alternative options in the field of writing, research, investment banking, law and many more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PhD – It’s more than a Degree

Simply feeling proud of the “Dr.” rubber stamp on your degree would not get you a job. It’s good that that you are a PhD graduate, however, it is more than a degree, where training and knowledge based research activities are more important. PhD is all about engaging in in-depth research along-with thorough understanding of research issues and the ability to solve key problems with exceptional analytical and observational skills. A PhD graduate must learn to work for long hours, analyze & solve complex problems and handle every situation with calmness. These traits are not only required to become an academic but also required in other areas of work such as Research, Finance and Public Service.

Job Prospects after doing PhD

At first, you need to understand that the value of a PhD degree is measured in terms of knowledge and skills. You need to have both these traits to excel in the career of your choice. Let’s take a look at some of the career options after doing PhD:

In general, the most sought after jobs after PhD are University professor, Industrial R&D Lab professionals and Start-ups mentors. Industrial Research and Development organizations have dedicated PhD groups who are involved in research activities, designing new products and taking part in crucial strategic meetings. As compared to development centres, the average salaries in industrial R&D labs are much higher. This clearly suggests that an engineering graduate with 5 years of experience would be earning less than a fresh PhD Graduate who has recently joined a industrial R&D lab.

In some cases, development centres hire PhD graduates for multiple roles with salaries almost same or even more as compared to exclusive R&D labs. The salary structure and designation of PhD graduate joining a Research lab or development centre is always higher than that of any other graduates with rich experience.

How the trend of PhD has changed over the years?

The advent of Start-ups has changed the entire PhD ecosystem. If you back in time, the scope of PhD was limited to academia. However, today, the amalgamation of academia and start-ups has left many options for PhD graduates to explore. As start-ups have become a storehouse of innovation and improvisation, PhD graduates are willing to join a thriving and new organization where they use their knowledge-based skills to design new products through their exceptional research and developmental capabilities. Now-a-days, PhD graduates are looking forward to work in start-up environment, gain experience and then join academia where they can use their skills and expertise in a productive way.

The future of PhD Graduates in Academia

Academia has become the first choice of PhD Graduates due to the freedom in working and lucrative salary packages. In most of the cases, jobs in academics also include other perks like free accommodation. Also, there is a chance for PhD graduates to work in other countries. In all, the most thing that organizations look for while hiring PhD candidates is superior analytical skills and the ability to solve complex problems at one go.

Key factors to track your potential after doing PhD

Once you have completed your PhD, it’s time to track your potential and apply to jobs based on your exact skills and expertise. Though it’s not a difficult task to analyze your skills at PhD level, however, the following parameters will help you to understand and realize where your true potential lies:

PhD Projects

Expertise and Skills

Writing a 75,000 word thesis

You are good at analyzing, planning and collecting information in a productive manner.

Data Analysis

Ability to analyze and present complex data. You are good with numbers.

Conducting interviews

Exceptional skills in research and conducting structured interviews with diplomatic approach.

Testing and doing experiments

You are good at problem solving and hold positive approach

Published various reports and presentation at conference

Ability to present complex projects in a comprehensive and precise way. You have good communication skills

Completion of PhD on time

Ability to handle and complete tough projects in the given time period

Organizing research seminars

Ability to lead from the front and have immense self-confidence

This list will give you a fair idea about your potential, and this will help you to figure out your skills and expertise at various levels of work. In this way, you will also be able to describe and present your qualities and skills in-front of a recruiter.

Meanwhile, you should refrain from drafting a lengthy resume even if you are a PhD graduate who has lots of things to say. Generally, employers tend to ignore reading such long resumes, which may put your efforts in vain. You should also consider the following things before your first job:

  • Be practical about your job prospects and set your ambitions in way that is achievable
  • Keep in mind that you and your colleague (with low qualifications than you) will be treated equally in organizations
  • Know the keywords and buzz words of the sector you want to go into.
  • Update yourself with the key market trends that are relevant and are in buzz
  • You might get paid less than you expected after doing PhD. In that case, accept the fact and move on
  • If you are making a transition from academia to start-ups or industrial R&D firms, be ready to adapt to the changes in terms of freedom and salary components

Career Choices after PhD

From financial sector to public sector, PhDs are now found everywhere as they are not limited to work in the zone of academia. Now-a-days, professionals are willing to make a transition from academic research after completing their PhDs to work in corporate environment and use their skills productively. It’s important to note that to work in banking sector you need to have a PhD in finance. This is because the shift from academic research can go beyond your area of study.

Some of the popular PhD specialization along-with the job sectors is listed below:

PhD

Area of work

PhD in English Literature

College Professor

PhD in Linguistics

Public sector and science communication

PhD in Pharmacy

Medical research centres

PhD in Chemistry

Analyst in Chemical research centres and laboratories

PhD in Geology

Head of service in Geological centres

PhD in Law

Advisory positions in Government sectors

PhD in Biology

Science Writing

PhD in Nutrition

Scientific Advisor

PhD in Biochemistry

Patent Lawyer

PhD in Molecular Biology

Medical research and development centres

You must remember to experiment, learn and innovative to excel in your career after doing PhD. And, if you are planning to make a transition from academia, be ready to adjust yourself in terms of stiff market challenges and freedom.

 

Read more Careers on : career options after phd , courses after phd , jobs after phd , career options after doctoral

DISCLAIMER: JPL and its affiliates shall have no liability for any views, thoughts and comments expressed on this article.

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