Path to Success: An analysis of US educated elite academics in the United States

Yuret T.

16th International Conference on Scientometrics and Informetrics (ISSI), Wuhan, China, 16 - 20 October 2017, pp.1314-1325 identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Volume:
  • City: Wuhan
  • Country: China
  • Page Numbers: pp.1314-1325
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Few academics achieve to become professors in prestigious universities. These elite academics need a very strong educational background in addition to high academic ability for this achievement. We have two main objectives in analyzing the educational backgrounds of the professors. First, educational institutions are evaluated in terms of the number of the alumni who become professors. Second, professors' path to success is analyzed and some light is shed on issues such as academic mobility. The educational backgrounds of 14,310 full professors from top 48 universities in the United States are analyzed. This study is confined to undergraduate and graduate degrees that are attained from United States. The source of educational attainment among professors is found to be concentrated. 72 percent (44 percent) of the professors get their PhD (undergraduate) degrees from 20 universities. The academic mobility is found to be very high. Only 16 percent of the professors work in the same state as they get their undergraduate degrees.