History Employment — Public and Private
Enrollment drives many hiring decisions — so prospective faculty members tend to watch trends in their disciplines. If students flock to departments, jobs follow — at least in theory. And that explains job openings in fields as diverse as nursing, forensics and Spanish — deans and department chairs need teachers for all the sections.
But new data and analysis from the American Historical Association show the emergence of a sector-based gap in history positions. During the last decade, enrollment in history programs — as measured by degrees awarded — increased in public institutions at twice the rate as at private institutions. But while the addition of new full-time faculty slots at private institutions outpaced enrollment growth in the sector, the opposite was true for public institutions.
During the last decade, the number of history degrees awarded by public institutions was up by 28.4 percent, while the number of full-time faculty teaching history increased by 24.0 percent. At private institutions, the increase in degrees awarded was 14.4 percent while the number of full-time positions increased by 21.4 percent.
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