The national survey of female and male PhD students “PhD STUDENTS Survey 2021” is aimed at reflecting on the study conditions of female and male PhD students in Czech higher education institutions (HEIs).
The survey is commissioned by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, which already supported the research on female and male PhD students in 2014. However, the current project is more ambitious. It is the first wave of data collection that has launched a long-term systematic survey of female and male PhD students. PhD studies and the effort to improve their quality and success rate is one of the priorities of the new Strategic plan of the ministry for higher education (MEYS) for the period from 2021.
The first wave of data collection for the national “PhD STUDENTS Survey 2021” ended with the year 2021.
This year 2022 we will focus on data preparation, data analysis and presentation of results.
In addition to the summary report, we will prepare two studies, the topics of which will be additionally specified. The results will be presented not only to Czech HEIs but also to PhD students themselves.
The design of the questionnaire is based on the need to improve the quality of this type of study. The amount of PhD scholarships and the overall financial conditions of the studies are also of interest. The focus is also on the relationship with supervisors, support from the university and, of course, the motivation of PhD students to study and their career prospects. We will ask what threatens and what benefits their studies.
The research has been postponed from March to December 2021 as a result of the pandemic situation that has led to a complete switch to distance learning. As a consequence, the originally planned coordination with a similar survey being carried out by the major German higher education research organisation Das Deutsche Zentrum für Hochschul- und Wissenschaftsforschung is not possible. However, despite this fact, we hope that at least some of the results will be comparable.
The project is designed to be long-term. In the first phase of the survey, i.e. during data collection, we contacted all PhD students who are studying in the current academic year in full-time and combined form, as well as those who are currently interrupted. In total, more than 20,000 potential respondents were contacted. The survey will continue as a longitudinal survey with regular follow-up surveys on individual topics, when we intend to re-contact respondents who allow us to do so. The next national survey will then take place in approximately 4 to 5 years.
In the project documents section you can download the Strategic plan of the MYES and information on the protection and processing of respondents’ personal data.
Problems with correct assignment to study programmes are common, so we apologise for this error. In particular, we have tried to resolve the error by giving you the option to enter your study programme – if you don’t find it in the list – in the free field “manually”.
Learners in some small degree programmes are concerned that they could be identified by linking two pieces of information – the study programme and the year of study. We want to assure you that in the data we will be working with below, in such cases the data will be aggregated into larger units so that identification of a particular respondent is not possible in any case.
We believe that the amount of the possible scholarship, formulated in this way, may have been somewhat shocking to some of you and we assure you that this was not our intention. However, this amount was not chosen at random or because of a lack of information on usual costs, but follows, among other things, the history of the basic stipend in relatively recent times. In case you consider such an amount to be completely inadequate, please use the appropriately strong answer from the range offered. The question also does not stand on its own, but is supplemented by others that focus on the particular cost and income structure of doctoral students who find themselves in a variety of life situations. We believe that it is the combination of these questions that will allow us to sufficiently understand the financial needs of most doctoral students.