CRA Taulbee Trends: Ph.D. Programs and
This article reports on the ethnicity of computer science and computer engineering ("CS/CE") Ph.D. recipients and students in the United States and Canada.
Due to changes in the Taulbee Survey, including the addition of new ethnic categories, it is difficult to summarize long-term trends. As a result, Table 1 reports the ethnic background of CS/CE Ph.D. recipients since the 1993/1994 academic year (AY), when the categories and data attained consistency. As can be seen, the proportion of Ph.D.s granted to non-Hispanic Whites ("whites") has declined over the last several years, while the proportion granted to nonresident aliens has increased. The 2006/07 data suggest that the proportion granted to each may be stabilizing.
While the proportions in Table 1 are useful for tracking trends, the actual number of degrees granted to the different ethnic groups can present a starker picture. Between 1970 and 2001, results from the Taulbee Survey indicate that 8,913 CS/CE doctorates were granted to whites, while only 154 were granted to African-Americans. Between 1984-- when the Taulbee Survey started to track Hispanics as an ethnic group-- and 2001, 6,737 doctorates were granted to whites, while only 229 were granted to Hispanics.
Enrollment data can suggest possible trends in future Ph.D. production. These figures are given in Table 2, which tracks enrolled Ph.D. students by ethnicity. Two noticeable trends are the increase in the representation of nonresident aliens and the decrease among whites seeking doctorates. As with degree production, the share of degrees granted to the different groups has been relatively stable in the past few years.
It seems unlikely that African-Americans, Native Americans, Asian/Pacific Islanders or Hispanics will see a significant improvement in their representation among Ph.D. recipients in the near future.
[Last updated May 23, 2008]
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