I've been PhD candidate for the past 3 years, and recently (successfully) defended my thesis. I now want to apply to companies outside academia (and maybe not directly related to my field of study) in the US and/or western Europe.

I am wondering where I should list the three years of PhD on my LinkedIn profile:

  • In Experience, because it was a paid job, and I acted as an employee. Plus I gave lessons beside research;
  • In Education, because it was for getting a diploma;
  • In both, separating what refers to the job part (all professional skills developed) from what belongs to the diploma part (all learnings, and specialization field).
  • 17
    'Education or experience'... Yes
    – Raven
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 14:45
  • 3
    Near duplicate on Academia.SE academia.stackexchange.com/questions/57403/…
    – posdef
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 15:33
  • 1
    @posdef Indeed, thanks for the link. The difference is here that I don't plan to apply in the academia (hence posted here, instead of Academia.SE).
    – ebosi
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 16:09
  • @ebo I guess that would be the case. Thought you might get some additional insights from the answers there
    – posdef
    Commented Oct 3, 2017 at 7:45
  • Wow, in what field can you finish a PhD in three years?! Commented Oct 3, 2017 at 9:24

4 Answers 4


List it in both.

The Education section is typically just a list of degrees and dates. It states the official certifications that you have received and can prove with documentation. This should include your field and maybe a focus area, but not much detail. You might also include your dissertation and any other papers in a separate Publications section.

Work Experience lists all of the jobs and positions you had during that time. This is where you explain in more detail your research, job responsibilities, and professional skills. I would list your Work Experience higher than Education if you are applying in industry.

Applying for jobs in academia is completely different than industry, and for that I would look for advice from Academia SE on how to properly organize a CV.


I am wondering where I should list the three years of PhD on my LinkedIn profile

Chose Option 3

The third bullet you provided is the way to go, put it in both locations. It looks like, and is work experience while at the same time you were able to obtain your PhD. That is a fortunate set of circumstances you found yourself in, being able to accomplish both the PhD and obtaining work experience.

  • What I am/was afraid is that it looks too pretentious or it looks like I "over-exploit" a single experience. I.e. I don't want people to feel I'm swindling them by listing twice a same period.
    – ebosi
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 15:20
  • 3
    I don't this this is an issue in your case sir.
    – Neo
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 15:21
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    Also, if putting a PHd on your resume is overselling a single experience, then the same could be said for people who (like me) leave their education off of their resume. I gained multiple skills at the jobs I've been to and have no education, but what really qualifies me is how my skills match those of the job.
    – Anoplexian
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 15:47
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    @Anoplexian I'm not sure I understand your comment. I get the point (and agree) about the fact that what matters is the 'skills vs. job'-fit rather than education. Yet I'm not sure I get the comparison as you seem to remove some part of your CV (education), when I'm afraid of duplicating one part...
    – ebosi
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 16:12
  • 1
    @Ebo It's essentially saying that emphasizing a single point on both sections is fine as long as it applies. Rather than education, I list certifications and other education I've received, despite them being a part of my job. Perhaps I initially explained myself poorly. It's really no different for you, although the education versus work experience is in a way reversed.
    – Anoplexian
    Commented Oct 2, 2017 at 16:35

As the others have answered, I would put it in both. Format it to be something like:


Teaching Assistant - University of XYZ - 2014-2017

  • Responsible for supervising undergraduate students in their research
  • Led recitation for 3 sections of underwater basket weaving courses
  • Saved the professors life from a deadly chemical explosion
  • Secured funding from a private donor worth 50 bajillion dollars


PhD, Swimming - University of XYZ - 2017

Thesis: "The impact water Pokemon have had on the ancient aliens and their influence on underwater basket weaving in the 18th century"

Note: Please don't copy this verbatim. It's meant to be humorous and serves only as a template.

  • 1
    To be honest, listing it like this is pretty worthless. Modern CV are usually expected to include more details about what the job entailed, the job title is not enough any more (and mostly meaningless anyway). Commented Oct 3, 2017 at 9:26
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    @KonradRudolph I agree with you. I just didn't feel like writing a full CV for OP. But, I'll update it just for you.
    – Michael
    Commented Oct 3, 2017 at 12:40
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    Haha, oops. I should have known that it was abbreviated. In my defence I think that a lot of junior job seekers routinely make this mistake, so having a more fleshed-out example is probably very pedagogical. So thanks for that. Also, superb example. Commented Oct 3, 2017 at 13:12

Normally, I'd expect to see this in the Education section, but also listed as a qualification.

In summary, state the fact you have it near the top, detail at the bottom.

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