Learn how to optimize ImaginePhD in your career development

By Caroline Schanche, Graduate Career Peer
Monday, November 13, 2017 11:00 AM

ImaginePhD is a new online career exploration tool for humanities and social science PhDs that was developed by the Graduate Career Consortium over the past 3 years. They have curated more than 450 resources for the site, with an explicit focus on career values and community building through career exploration. It is quick, easy, and free to make your own account today! Read on to find out more about the different parts of the site and how you can use ImaginePhD in each stage of your graduate program.

There are three parts to the site: Assessments, Job families, and My Plan.


Interests Assessment: Evaluate what career-related activities you enjoy doing most and those you would prefer to avoid

Skills Assessment: Identify skills you already use, determine level of experience and ability with each

Values Assessment: Reflect upon what is important to you in order to have a satisfying work environment


Each one contains a description of the types of careers and job titles associated with it, as well as resources for career exploration, building job skills, networking, and applying


Create short- or long-term timelines for various types of goals (e.g. degree completion, career development, skills development, personal development, money/funding goals)


Early-Stage PhD: Use the skills Assessment to create a baseline and identify areas for development, and the My Plan tool as a conversation starter with your mentors/advisors

Mid-Stage PhD: Use the Interests Assessment to determine which jobs require which tasks and what is enjoyable, the skills Assessment to reflect on strengths and identify areas for growth. Begin using Job Families to explore options and begin building community, and My Plan to create dissertation-completion and career-development timeline simultaneously

Late-Stage & Completed PhD: Use the Values Assessment to identify what is most important to you in a work environment, and establish parameters for a job search, and the Job Families tool to connect and apply for jobs

Read more about how to best use ImaginePhD here, or print out this handout and hang it above your desk!