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Science and Engineering Doctoral Degrees as a Percentage of Science and Engineering Degrees Conferred (Percent)

State Indicator S-23

This indicator represents the extent to which a state's higher education programs in S&E are focused on producing individuals with the highest level of technical expertise. The academic and technical leaders of the future are often drawn from individuals receiving S&E doctoral degrees. S&E fields include the physical, life, earth, ocean, atmospheric, computer, and social sciences; mathematics; engineering; and psychology. They do not include medical fields or technologies. Total S&E degrees conferred include bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees but exclude associate's degrees.

The indicator value is computed by dividing the number of doctoral degrees awarded in S&E fields by the total number of S&E degrees awarded by the higher education institutions within the state. The numbers of degrees awarded is an actual count provided by the National Center for Education Statistics and includes degrees from both public and private institutions.

Student mobility after graduation is not accounted for, which may make this indicator less meaningful in predicting the qualifications of a state's future technical workforce. In states with a small number of S&E graduate programs, the number of S&E doctoral degrees awarded may vary considerably from year to year. Readers should use caution when making annual comparisons for those states with small numbers of S&E doctorates.

Data source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System.

  • 1st Quartile

    4.79%7.05%
  • 2nd Quartile

    4.29%4.75%
  • 3rd Quartile

    3.63%4.27%
  • 4th Quartile

    1.80%3.63%
  • No data

Footnote

NOTES: The national doctorate S&E degrees total for the United States includes U.S. territories. All S&E degrees include bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. The national S&E degrees total for the United States includes U.S. territories.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (various years). Data on degrees conferred prior to 2016 were retrieved from the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics, Integrated Science and Engineering Resources Data System (WebCASPAR); data for 2016 are from the NCES IPEDS Data System, accessed 2 November, 2017.

Recommended Citation: National Science Board. 2018. “Science and Engineering Doctoral Degrees as a Percentage of Science and Engineering Degrees Conferred.” Science and Engineering Indicators 2018, State Indicators. Alexandria, VA: National Science Foundation (NSB-2018-1). https://www.nsf.gov/statistics/state-indicators/indicator/se-doctoral-degrees-to-all-se-degrees

Last updated: January 18, 2018