So, in 2011 it was 39% of humanities’ Ph.D.s getting immediate, full-time, tenure-track positions, was it?! That seems really high to me. The 1999 study that’s also discussed in the article has, for English and Political Science 10-14 years after Ph.D. completion: 60% tenured and 5-6% tenure-track (for a total of 65-66%). The article’s main point, though, is that the longer-term result is going to be somewhat worse for recent Ph.Ds into the future (i.e., from 2011 on).
MY point is that it’s always been much worse in musicology, but no-one (unbelievably) has ever actually tracked the relevant information. So, I’ve started on this issue as a bit of a side-project. As an example, the outcome for UCLA’s Department of Musicology is 32% tenure-track or tenured (probably around 38%, if one were to include full-time adjunct instructors)—but that is for 21 years’ worth of Ph.D.s (1991-2011). Fully a quarter of those degrees were completed in the four years from 2008 to 2011. Supply and demand, people!