Eye on Education

Percentage of Optometry Faculty with PhD/Other Doctoral Degrees Decreases

Print this Article | Send to Colleague

Percentage of Optometry Faculty with PhD/Other Doctoral Degrees Decreases

The percentage of full-time faculty with PhD and other (non-OD) doctoral degrees at US schools and colleges of optometry has decreased over the past 16 years, according to ASCO’s 2019-20 Annual Faculty Data Report, provided to Deans and Presidents of ASCO’s member schools and colleges in February and posted here on the ASCO website. In 2003-04, 30.8% of full-time faculty had doctoral degrees, compared to 25.7% in 2019-20. The percentage with Master’s degrees also decreased from 35% to 23.6% over the same time period, while the percentage with OD degrees increased from 83.4% to 88%.

In addition, over the past year:

  • The total number of full-time faculty remained about steady, decreasing from 790 to 789. This follows a modest 1.7% increase in 2018-19.
  • Residency programs continue to be the primary source of new faculty, with 35.8% of new full-time faculty coming from residency programs. The other major feeders continue to be optometry practices and other academic institutions.
  • The number of full-time female faculty increased 0.7% (now at 57.8% of total) and full-time male faculty decreased 1.2%.
  • The percentage of full-time Black or African American faculty remains at 3.8% and the percentage of full-time Hispanic or Latino faculty remains at 5.1%.

The report also shows:

  • 31.3% of full-time faculty have tenure and 16.2% are on a tenure track at the 19 institutions offering tenure.
  • The average age of didactic full-time professors is 59.2 years and for clinical full-time professors 56.6 years.
  • The average full-time didactic professor has been with the school for 21.5 years and the average full-time clinical professor for 21.1 years.

For more information, contact Joanne Zuckerman, ASCO’s Manager, Data Services and Special Projects, at jzuckerman@opted.org.


Back to Eye on Education

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn