Degrees of Separation: Hiring Patterns and First-Generation University Students with English Doctorates
Authors: Lynn Arner
This study investigates whether the hiring of professors in Canada, a land of public universities and inexpensive tuition, is more equitable in terms of socioeconomic class than the hiring of their counterparts in the United States. Featuring original data on the degrees of all tenure track and tenured faculty members who teach in English doctoral programs in Canada, this article examines the relation between, on the one hand, the nationalities and the rankings of the programs in which these scholars obtained their degrees and, on the other, the tier of the programs in which these scholars teach. Employing previously unprocessed data from Statistics Canada and in dialogue with research on higher education, including the writings of Pierre Bourdieu, this article discusses the mechanisms through which faculty hiring patterns in Canadian English departments are strongly tied to PhD holders? socioeconomic backgrounds. This study discusses the implications of such tracking patterns for first-generation university students?who comprise 38.8 percent of English doctoral recipients in Canada?when they seek positions in the professoriat.
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