University of Bath

Career options for Education Researchers

Find out about the different career options available if you're undertaking research in Education

Career options

Broadly speaking, your options are the same as those for researchers in other disciplines; see the career options page for more details. The aim of this page is to look at some career options that may be particularly suitable for Education researchers. One important question to ask yourself is the extent to which you want to use your subject in any future career move. It's entirely your choice - you will have acquired and developed many skills during your PhD which are complementary to the research skills you might think define your career choice.

If you are a doctoral researcher in Education, you may be doing your doctorate while employed, or on secondment from your current employer. In this case you'll have a job to return to on completion of your doctorate, but this page might provide you with some food for thought regarding future options.

If you'd like to remain working in Education and would like some ideas as to how, see details of what previous Bath Education doctoral graduates have gone on to do.

This covers the most obvious choices (returning to teaching, academic, research and public sector employment) but the public sector, in particular, is vast and there are many options within it. Possible options might include the Civil Service, education administration (in schools, HE or FE institutions), research for a local authority, think tank or charity, or possibly working as a freelance consultant specialising in educational research. For some of these jobs, it is strongly recommended that you have some prior work experience, and use your networks to build connections with relevant organisations. Work experience can be part-time or voluntary and fit around your doctorate. Visit the work experience section of the main Careers Service's web pages for more information, and also see our Finding a Graduate Job guide for networking tips.

You might want to move out of the Education sector altogether, but still use your social science background. There are many occupations in which your doctorate would be valuable, including management consultancy, which uses research skills to produce recommendations for organisational change. Other areas might be human resources, which concentrates on employment policy and regulations, or market research.

For more information on these jobs and their training and entry requirements, see the Information Sources section below and the Occupational Profiles on Prospect.ac.uk.

Options outside of your subject

If, having got to this stage, you're not sure that you want to use your Education any more, don't despair! You have many skills and experiences that are highly valuable to employers and you can choose from the huge range of graduate jobs on offer, from structured training with large financial services firms to management training with well-known retailers and manufacturers. The key is to think of the skills you have and enjoy using, and explore occupations that use them to suggest possible alternatives. For information on different types of jobs, explore the occupational profiles on the Prospects.ac.uk.

Information sources

Where to look for jobs in Education and related fields

See the vacancies sources for researchers page for academic, research and research-related jobs.

Other pages for researchers