Selected education and employment characteristics of nurses with doctorates were examined. Data were obtained in late 1979 and 1980 about three time periods in the 1,964 respondents' careers: (a) doctoral study, (b) first position, and (c) current position if different from first position. Of the nurses studied, 76% completed doctoral programs in the 1970s. Education was the major field of study most frequently reported, followed by social/behavioral sciences and nursing; federal monies were the major source of financial support. Nurses with doctorates were hired in their first position primarily for teaching in baccalaureate and higher degree programs in nursing with a sizable shift to administrative roles in academia among those reporting current positions different from first positions. Only 6% to 8% of doctorally prepared nurses were hired primarily for the conduct of research in either first or current position.