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Liz - employer attitudes to the PhD
Name: Liz
PhD discipline: English Literature
Area(s) of work: Heritage
Year of graduation: 2004
Date of Interview: 30/06/2008

Now Playing: Liz - employer attitudes to the PhD
Liz talks about how her PhD is regarded by her friends and her employer.

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How do you feel your PhD is regarded by your employers and your colleagues? 

That's a strange question, it's a subject that when you're together with friends who've got PhDs it's endlessly discussed. In a higher education institution, most people who are in lecturing jobs or research posts have got a PhD, everyone's got one so it's nothing unusual is it in that kind of environment? Its meaning and its value arguably are some what lessened by that because everybody's got it, so what's so great about a PhD? But when you're outside, especially with an arts PhD, in an arts area, which heritage is, it's different. I think my employers were pleased to get me for the job because for them it signals that we've got someone of quite significant calibre here who's capable, who's got research skills, presentation skills, and all of that. I think to some people here, my colleagues, without a doubt they do consider me to be eccentric and I think that, I think that thing about the eccentricity came before they knew me. Arguably I suppose people could say I am somewhat eccentric anyway but they had that view of me before they even knew me because of the doctor tag at the front or that they knew that I'd got a PhD. I think it's an assumption that people make, you know, it's the mad professor tag, isn't it? Whether it's in the arts or the sciences, people will think that but I think that my employers were quite pleased to get me especially for the salary that they pay.

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