The Research on Careers in Science (ROCS) Lab in Georgia Tech’s School of Public Policy provides a home for an interdisciplinary group of faculty, researchers and students to conduct empirical and theoretically-driven research and program evaluation studies on the context, development, professional experiences, and outcomes relevant to the STEM workforce and careers in science and engineering.

We focus on the crucial human, social, and contextual aspects of the scientific research enterprise. Studies cover a wide range of topics primarily in the post-secondary environment, including the professional and related ethical preparation of undergraduate and graduate students in STEM disciplines, researcher/faculty career development and advancement, team science, professional networks, career outcomes and productivity, mobility and globalization, and issues relevant to diversity and underrepresentation in the STEM workforce. Studies also address the important policy and institutional capacity and other contexts relevant to scientific careers and their outcomes.

Undergraduate and graduate students may get involved in ROCS through support on funded research projects, for-credit independent research experiences, and occasionally, volunteer opportunities. Working collaboratively, ROCS students learn about careers in scientific and engineering disciplines across the STEM pipeline and pathways. Through this work, students gain skills in developing and working with a range of different research designs, data and software relevant to the study of careers, including surveys, qualitative interviews, bibliometric and other methods.

ROCS Lab research has been supported by U.S. National Science Foundation, U.S. National Institutes for Health, and multiple foundations, including the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.