Rightwingprof has an article noting the rising number of doctoral degrees being given by tracking some stats from 1970 to the present and the implications of supply and demand on the academic job market.
As I noted in the comments there, it would be interesting to see (1) the proportion of doctoral degrees since 1970 that have been given in non-traditional academic areas like the “Studies”, (2) the proportion of doctoral degrees that are not PhD’s but non-dissertation terminal degrees like the EdD (which, in my experience, an awful lot of people have gotten in the last 15 years), and (3) the proportion of doctoral degrees since 1970 that have been given not by the usual academic universities but smaller schools (or online universities) with startup doctoral programs that are usually easy to get into and out of.
I think there will always be a market for people with PhD’s in important, substantive areas, whether it’s in or out of higher ed. But certainly it’s your skills and not your pedigree that keep you viable in any job market.
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