Graduate Student Professional Development:
Preparing Engineering Doctoral Students for Careers in Academia and Industry
- What are the career paths of the population from the receipt of their Ph.D.s to their current positions?
- What does it mean to have or to hold a Ph.D. in engineering?
- How did graduate school prepare or not prepare participants for their careers?
- How do we engage students in innovative learning opportunities that allow them to achieve the desired KSAs?
- The motivation and added value of pursuing an engineering Ph.D.
- Knowledge, skills, and attributes (KSA) of engineering Ph.D. holders
- Expectations of an engineering Ph.D. in their work environment
- Reflections of participants’ doctoral education experiences
- Recommendations on how doctoral engineering education could be improved
Qualitative interview data will be translated into valid and reliable assessment tools that can explore the extent to which engineering doctoral students identify with expert-identified norms, skills, and attributes. Using those tools, Dr. Cox’s research group is evaluating graduate students’ professional development experiences. These tools will provide graduate students with feedback about their strengths, potential areas of improvement regarding the necessary KSAs for career success, and professional development resources that will facilitate improvement. The findings have the potential to (re)innovate doctoral engineering education.
Zhu, J., Cox, M.F., Branch, S., Ahn, B., & London, J. (Accepted for publication). Recommendations for engineering doctoral education: Design of an instrument to evaluate change. 43rd Annual Frontiers in Education (FIE) Conference, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Cox, M.F., London, J., Zhu, J., Ahn, B., Zephirin, T., Taylor, K. (In Press). Curriculum Vitae Analyses of Engineering Ph.D.s Working in Academia and Industry. International Journal of Engineering Education
Zhu, J., London, J., Ahn, B., Cox, M.F. (2012). Recommendations for Promoting Desirable Characteristics in Engineering Ph.D.s: Perspectives from Industry and Academia. Paper presented at the annual American Society for Engineering Education Conference, San Antonio, Texas.
Cox, M.F., London, J., Ahn, B., Frazier, S., Zhu, J., Torres-Ayala, A. (2011). Attributes of Success for Engineering Ph.D.s: Perspectives from Academia and Industry. Paper presented at the annual American Society for Engineering Education Conference, Vancouver, Canada.
Cox, M.F., Ahn, B., London, J., Frazier, S., Zhu, J., Torres-Ayala, A. (2011). Choices for Ph.D.s in Engineering: Analysis of Career Paths in Academia and Industry. Paper presented at the annual American Society for Engineering Education Conference, Vancouver, Canada.
Cox, M.F., Cekic, O., Branch, S., Chavela Guerra, R., Cawthorne, J. Ahn, B. (2010). Ph.D.s in Engineering: Getting Them through the Door and Seeing Them Graduate – Faculty and Industry Perspectives. Paper presented at the annual American Society for Engineering Education Conference, Louisville, Kentucky.
This work was supported primarily by the National Science Foundation under grant #0747803.