from “Where the Time Goes” – Inside Higher Ed, November 25, 2014:
Among the key findings is that the median time is longer in the humanities than in any other field, at 6.9 years in 2012, compared to a 5.9-year average for all Ph.D.s. That won’t surprise anyone following the national time-to-degree conversation, but just where in their studies humanities Ph.D.s are stalling might. It’s been largely assumed that students accrue extra time during their dissertation phase, once they’ve finished their course work, and when their efforts are overwhelmingly solitary and funding is harder to secure. According to the academy’s new data, however, humanities graduate students spend more time studying before starting on their dissertations than their peers in other fields – about four years, compared to two for physical and life sciences students. Social sciences Ph.D.s spend about four years studying, too.