Learning to play the game: Student publishing as an indicator of future scholarly success
Department of Sociology
The need to encourage future generations of students in the pursuit of scientific research has been viewed as a cornerstone of US R&D efforts. However, few indicators of student intellectual activity at the graduate level are tracked on an ongoing basis. The aim of this paper is to examine graduate student publishing as an indicator of pre-doctoral research activity and future scholarly success. This study addresses the gap in knowledge about student publishing through a distinctive dataset that merges bibliometric publication data with survey data from a study of academic scientists. These data are from a nationally representative sample (n = 1598) of scientists employed in Research I institutions. For each survey respondent, we have compiled a lifetime publication record from the Web of Science, Science Citation Index. The results indicate that the share of students with at least one publication is substantial and growing over time. Co-publication with advisors is found to be an important driving factor in publication activity, along with certain demographic and field characteristics. Our analysis also suggests that graduate student publication and collaboration are predictors of later career success and productivity, and as such an important tool in evaluating graduate programs.