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How many of you are currently employed (graduates only)?

  1. Employed full-time

    32 vote(s)
    72.7%
  2. Employed part-time

    3 vote(s)
    6.8%
  3. Unemployed

    8 vote(s)
    18.2%
  4. Retired

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Other

    1 vote(s)
    2.3%
  1. Jan 20, 2016 #1

    StatGuy2000

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    Education Advisor

    Hi everyone! I did a similar poll earlier, but I wanted to start a new poll asking how many of you are currently employed or unemployed.

    Now please keep the following in mind:

    (1) Only reply if you are a graduate of a STEM program (any science program, engineering, math, statistics, computer science, etc.).

    (2) Only reply if you are a graduate. In other words, do not reply if you are a current student. That includes those who are currently pursuing their PhD.

    Please note that this poll will be open for 30 days starting today. Thanks for you responses!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 20, 2016 #2
    What are you trying to find out with this poll? I'm not real sure what you can tease out of a one-question survey.
     
  4. Jan 20, 2016 #3

    StatGuy2000

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    Education Advisor

    Nothing more than a snapshot of the demographics of PF forum, more specifically the number of people who are either employed or unemployed (partly because we see many posts in the Career Guidance section about concerns about finding employment). I did a similar poll 2 years ago, and wanted to see an update in 2016.
     
  5. Jan 20, 2016 #4

    mfb

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    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    You don't get that.
    You get a snapshot of PF members looking into your thread in the Career Guidance forum, willing to vote. Plus some deviations from votes that are not done in the right category.

    What about (employed) PhD students with a finished master, as it is usual in Europe?
     
  6. Jan 20, 2016 #5

    StatGuy2000

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    Education Advisor

    Of course the snapshot of PF forum is reliant on those who visit this thread in the Career Guidance forum, willing to vote. I'm well aware that I may not be capturing the sample population. This is not a scientific poll, and I don't intend to represent this as such.

    I'm curious -- when you state that the PhD students are employed, are these people working in the private or public sector independent of their PhD studies/research?
    Because my understanding is that PhD students are not employed full-time, but are working as part of their PhD studies.

    At any rate, I'm interested in those PF members who have finished all of their STEM studies (whether it is at the bachelors, masters, or doctorate level).
     
  7. Jan 20, 2016 #6

    mfb

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    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    Most PhD positions are paid half-time, some 3/4, some full. They can be in the private sector, most are in the public sector.
    Looks quite arbitrary to me (you can also go for a "Habilitation" in Germany, which is 5 to 10 years after the PhD - does that count as "STEM studies"?).
     
  8. Jan 20, 2016 #7

    StatGuy2000

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    Then let me ask the question to you, mfb. How would you have designed this poll instead, to address which PF member is employed (specifically not counting those who are still students)?
     
  9. Jan 20, 2016 #8

    esuna

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    Gold Member

    What if someone with a STEM degree is employed in a non-STEM field?
     
  10. Jan 20, 2016 #9

    Vanadium 50

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    Education Advisor

    Then they are employed.
     
  11. Jan 20, 2016 #10

    WWGD

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    Gold Member

    Well, yes, but I think the point was whether StatGuy2000 may want to note that in his poll, since he is (seems to be) interested on the outcomes of those who study in the STEM area.
     
  12. Jan 21, 2016 #11

    mfb

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    Staff: Mentor

    Simple: Count employed PhD students as employed. They have "students" in their title - so what? They could have gotten a job elsewhere, they chose to get a job as PhD student. A MSc graduate looking for a job (PhD or elsewhere) is unemployed, so you are biasing the result if you don't count PhD students.
     
  13. Jan 21, 2016 #12

    Krylov

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    For example, in The Netherlands, in almost all cases PhD students have the legal status of employees (with full benefits) with a fixed term contract, so I agree with @mfb.
     
  14. Jan 21, 2016 #13
    How on Earth do you intend to get that from this thread? At best you are getting a sample of those that visit this thread with a STEM degree.

    It's as though you wanted to survey how many members of a large church are degree holders. You place the papers that contain the survey in one room of the church that not everyone goes into, then attempted to use that data to make generalizations about the whole.
     
  15. Jan 21, 2016 #14
    You're also ignoring area, which has a huge impact on employment. Let's say 100 people graduate with engineering degrees and they all decide to remain where I live and look for employment. I can promise you that the unemployment of those graduates would remain high until they accepted a position that was not working as an engineer. Now let's assume those 100 take job offers and move away, their employment numbers will be much higher.

    It seems you only care if they're employed too, instead of if they are employed in a field that they were interested in that requires a degree to gain entry into it. What about STEM graduates that were unable to gain employment in the field of their choice and were then required to accept a low paying position. According to your poll they count as employed, even if they're employed doing something that required no degree to do.
     
  16. Jan 21, 2016 #15

    StatGuy2000

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    Education Advisor

    First of all, you are taking this poll way too seriously! I very much understand the limitations of this poll, as it can only sample those who are members of PF who happen to visit this thread with a STEM degree (my underlying assumption is that, given the nature of PF, that there will be a higher percentage of those who are PF members who have STEM degrees compared to those in other degree programs).

    That being said, this is a fundamental limitation of trying to ascertain characteristics of the study population (in this instance, PF members). A more "scientific" approach would be to select a "random" sample of PF members, and send them a list of questions about their education, employment, etc (whatever information is not already reported publicly in their profiles). Of course, setting aside whether the moderators will allow me to do this, there is the question of non-response, and whether responders are truly representative of the study population (are we dealing with Missing-At-Random or not).
     
  17. Jan 21, 2016 #16
    That is how general unemployment figures work. When you see unemployment figures for graduates it is just that, unemployed. I worked in a pizza place after graduating. I was employed. My employment contributed to the low unemployment numbers for physics graduates.
     
  18. Jan 21, 2016 #17

    StatGuy2000

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    Boolean Boogey, ModusPwnd,

    I was deliberate in my question about looking at those within PF forums who graduated from STEM degrees and who are employed, not looking at whether they were employed related to their studies. If I wanted to articulate all of the subtleties involved, I would require a much more detailed series of survey questions instead of one poll. I would have to questions like "Are you working in an area related to your studies?", followed up by "Are you working in an area that does not require a college/university degree?", followed up by "How much do you get paid per year?", followed up by "Are you satisfied with the job you have?"

    The format of PF polls as they are, such a detailed series of surveys is just not practical, and to complain about my poll is frankly silly.
     
  19. Jan 21, 2016 #18
    Indeed.
     
  20. Jan 21, 2016 #19
    Well what gives me the obsessive love of mathematics and ability to play around with boolean algebra also causes me to take everything literally and seriously.

    It's a blessing and a curse haha.
     
  21. Jan 24, 2016 #20
    its pretty obvious that stats don't require all this discussion, just take it as it is. within the parameters given, it is good data for the purpose intended. (but then I am one of the unemployed).
     
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