Tanke Job Talk
Components of an application
- Cover letter
- Speaks specifically to advertisement and your skills and connects them. Introduce yourself, highlight accomplishments, and fit well
- Know about who you’re applying to
- Don’t go beyond two pages
- Present yourself as colleague not student.
- Put strengths first
- General info first; teaching; publications reverse chronological order
- Writing Sample
- Abstract is important
- 3 letters of rec.
- Need letter at least from chair of dissertation committee.
- Strength of reference… “I can only speak to these aspects” is bad sign…
- Evidence of teaching excellence (teaching portfolio)
- Teaching statement (one page philosophy of teaching); make case that what you do contributes to mission of university
- Sample teaching evaluations… don’t overwhelm with meaningless data and don’t cherry pick. Summarize course evaluations; highlights and such… peer review of your teaching might not be a bad idea.
- Sample syllabi. Don’t just list texts… “Here’s how I’ll conceptualize it; here’s what students should take away from it; these are the texts that would be used; check out this syllabus”; get people engaged in the idea of the class, don’t just list a table of contents.
- Jobs for Philosophers (now online)
- Higheredjobs.com (smaller schools; interdisciplinary jobs; visiting positions)
- Chronicle of Higher Education
- Share job knowledge
Reading Advertisements and Miscellaneous
- Sometimes you can tell that they don’t know what they want.
- Allude to connections to school (I’m from Boston too!; I have commitments to the principles of your mission statement)
- Note that you might be able to create synergy with other departments if the advertisement suggests interest in interdisciplinary studies and cross-cultural studies.
- Research Statement: Where you’ve been, what you’ve done, where you’re going. Demonstrate ambitions beyond dissertation.
- If offer is weird, ask yourself why they need such things.
- Rejections and not hearing is not a statement about merits, but about fit. IT’S ALL ABOUT FIT. Beware of the “spray and pray approach”.
- If its in the add, its important enough to try and speak to it.
- Read advertisements carefully. Don’t fake it or change yourself, but present yourself in best possible, realistic light.
- (Before writing cover letter) Investigate each department; determine their needs. What courses do they offer regularly? What additional courses do they have on the catalogue that they don’t offer regularly? Are there any university-wide initiatives that your work could be seen as supporting?
- Craft application accordingly.
- Let people know which places you are applying and don’t be afraid to ask around about whether or not someone has a professional connection at the given department. This will not get you the job, but it will open doors.
- Save your time and energy by focusing your search on jobs that are a good fit. Avoid “spray and pray”. If you have AOS, but not necessarily AOC, try it out.
- Remember that there is no way to predict which places will select you for a screening interview or not. That is, don’t be afraid to apply for jobs that you think may be a stretch, if they are a good fit, and don’t be discouraged when you don’t hear from places that seemed like sure thing.
- Look for a job that you can grow with.