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Choosing a Path to the Ancient World in a Modern Market: the Reality of Faculty Jobs in Archaeology

Cover of American Antiquity JournalA report in the journal American Antiquity titled, “Choosing a Path to the Ancient World in a Modern Market,” by Jeff Speakman and co-authors ranks Texas A&M University as one of the top 10 institutions to get a PhD in Anthropology with a focus on archaeology! We rank 7th in the country of programs to successfully place our archaeology PhD graduates in academic positions! To see a table of their results, visit their article and be sure to download the Supplemental Table.

Abstract: Over the past 30 years, the number of US doctoral anthropology graduates has increased by about 70%, but there has not been a corresponding increase in the availability of new faculty positions. Consequently, doctoral degree-holding archaeologists face more competition than ever before when applying for faculty positions. Here we examine where US and Canadian anthropological archaeology faculty originate and where they ultimately end up teaching. Using data derived from the 2014–2015 AnthroGuide, we rank doctoral programs whose graduates in archaeology have been most successful in the academic job market; identify long-term and ongoing trends in doctoral programs; and discuss gender division in academic archaeology in the US and Canada. We conclude that success in obtaining a faculty position upon graduation is predicated in large part on where one attends graduate school.