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1 Getting an Academic Job. Find out what the role requires. What to do before applying. Where and how to find jobs. Your successful application. Selection.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Getting an Academic Job. Find out what the role requires. What to do before applying. Where and how to find jobs. Your successful application. Selection."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Getting an Academic Job. Find out what the role requires. What to do before applying. Where and how to find jobs. Your successful application. Selection process. Negotiating.

2 2 Find out what the role requires. Consider very carefully developing abilities associated with Academic Level B criteria – bases of selection decisions. Teaching (30-40%). Research (30-40%). Professional & community service (10-20%). Administration (10-20%). Expectations may vary internationally (e.g. US – more teaching for new staff)

3 3 Before applying… Network – talk to departmental visitors, schmooze at conferences, send good mss to key people. If you travel, offer to speak at local universities. Publish but avoid junking up your cv. Get teaching experience and make sure you get it evaluated (SET, peer).

4 4 Before applying… Begin to make explicit a teaching philosophy (see, for example: * UNSW’s ‘Developing your teaching portfolio’ at or * Carnegie Mellon’s guidance at Engage in some professional/community service (e.g., RGSSA, EIA (SA)). Contribute to AOU activities (e.g., GEOView, organising PG days, mentoring, AUSAid tutoring). Cultivate referees. Look to build a pool of good referees who know you. Be sure you have a current passport if looking overseas.

5 5 Useful online job-finding sources. (Includes Association of Commonwealth Universities) Yahoo Careers – Australia & NZ CAGLIST Job Postings University Affairs (Career ads, Canada) Times Higher Ed Supplement (Useful registration feature) AAG Jobs/Careers Chronicle Careers (US Chronicle of Higher Education) Riley Guide to International Job Opportunities

6 6 Where and how to find jobs. Read the Wednesday Australian (Higher Ed section). Build a file of the selection criteria for interesting like jobs. Sign up for iag- or for caglist@lists.uvic.caiag- Cold calling…? For 1 st or early job, apply for anything remotely close to skills and interests (esp. for US).

7 7 Your successful application… Ask friends for copies of (successful) application materials. Check the target AOU’s WWW site. Anyone you know? Consider speaking to them informally (culture, resources, internal candidates…). Think too about where you would ‘fit’? Who could you work with? Call the AOU contact person. Check for ‘internal’ candidates. Respond to the selection criteria! Send copies of the application to your referee (or ask them to advise if they’re notified and you’ll send. Riskier.)

8 8 Your successful application... For most Australian, NZ, UK applications: Cover letter (@1 page – make a good impression). Responses to each criterion. CV. Appendices (e.g. publications, SETS) Use good quality paper. Avoiod typos etc… Make sure you have included everything required.

9 9 Your successful application. For the US and Canada probably also need: Teaching philosophy Research interests Teaching evaluations Academic transcript. May be useful additions to consider for here, depending on role and institution.

10 10 CV contents. Name Address etc Citizenship Qualifications (including class of Honours) Awards Publications and grants Conference presentations Teaching experience Community and professional service Service to university Professional development Referees

11 11 Selection process – the formal part. Seminar/talk – to staff, selection committee, students… In North America, may be two – one on research; one on teaching. Other ‘tasks’ – role play, meeting other candidates. Interview – 45-60 minutes.

12 12 The talk. Vital part of the process. Find out about key matters such as facilities & what type of talk they want (e.g. teaching, research…) See Making the Grade for detailed advice. Road test your talk with a critical and constructive audience. 20-60 minutes. Audience watching for teaching ability and research issues (e.g. conceptual framework; prospects for development; ability to respond to questions…) Questions an be very, very critical. (‘There but for the grace of God…’)

13 13 Interview – anticipate possible questions. All that has gone into your written application may be forgotten. Why do you want this job? Outline your teaching philosophy. How do you cope with student diversity? What are your research plans for the next 2-3 years? What will you do to get your research plan up and running in the first year? What do you believe you can contribute to the AOU?

14 14 Interview – your questions. “What questions do you have for us?” Prepare some. Areas might include: Research funding. Teaching ‘load’ and other expectations. Offshore and online teaching? ‘Culture’ of the AOU. Activity level of PG students. Show you’ve done some homework and are interested. Ask serious questions you really want answers to. But - don’t ask about salary… The interview is a 2-way street.

15 15 Interviewing – the informal parts. Meals with prospective colleagues. Arrange to meet staff and students. Ask for a tour of the relevant facilities. Think critically. Is this where you want to be? Will this place set you up well? Do you feel comfortable here? But also remember, “It is easier to look for a job when you’re eating.” (M.D. Thomas)

16 16 Negotiating. The offer. Starting date. Salary level. Find out too about insurances, salary packaging, and superannuation (retirement) matters… Start-up research funds. Teaching load. Access to LSL/OSL. Computer access. Accommodation arrangements. Access to RA/TAs… Get all negotiated matters on paper or email.

17 17 Some other random thoughts. Start before you’ve finished…. Don’t underestimate the time finding a job will require. Competition is very keen. Learn from experiences. Seek feedback (in preparation and from selection process). Be aware of seasonality of job offers.

18 18 Useful resources. Do a Google on getting an academic job. Check Amazon and Barnes & Noble for current helpful texts. Look at geographers: getting jobs H:/Teaching materials/Getting an academic job

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