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Science and Engineering Doctorates

Which fields attract students?

Field trends

Non-science and engineering

The number of doctorates awarded in education has declined over the past decade, leading to a large, steady drop in the relative share of doctorates in that field from 14% in 2005 to 9% in 2015. Despite an increase in the number of humanities and arts doctorates, the relative share of doctorates awarded in this field fell 2 percentage points from 2005 to 2015. The share of doctorates in other non-S&E fields has remained fairly stable over the past decade (figure B).

Doctorates awarded in non-science and engineering fields of study: 1995–2015

Chart of Doctorates awarded in non-science and engineering fields of study: 1995–2015
(Percent)
Year Education Humanities and arts Other non-S&E fields
1995 15.9 12.1 5.7
1996 16.0 11.7 5.3
1997 15.5 12.4 5.2
1998 15.4 12.6 5.0
1999 15.9 12.8 5.2
2000 15.6 13.2 5.0
2001 15.6 13.3 5.1
2002 16.3 13.2 5.3
2003 16.3 12.9 5.2
2004 15.8 12.5 5.8
2005 14.4 12.0 5.5
2006 13.4 11.7 5.7
2007 13.4 10.6 5.9
2008 13.5 9.7 5.7
2009 13.2 9.9 5.7
2010 11.0 10.4 5.7
2011 9.5 10.7 5.5
2012 9.4 10.9 5.4
2013 9.4 10.8 5.7
2014 8.9 10.2 5.6
2015 9.3 10.2 5.5
Table of Doctorates awarded in non-science and engineering fields of study: 1995–2015