Some jobs are listed as open rank. If you're ABD or in your first year out of grad school is it pointless to apply for these jobs because they are really looking for someone who is about to hit tenure time elsewhere but are looking for a change?
Date: 26 Sep 2015 13:45
Number of posts: 11
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I am on the search committee for an open-rank search this year. For our position, "open rank" does not mean "almost tenured." We are giving full consideration to applicants at any stage, whether it be ABD or associate professor. In fact, some of the strongest applicants in our pool are ABD or just starting postdocs.
In my experience, no. In my department, open rank means that the hiring committee is open to hiring someone more senior, but it does not exclude new graduates or ABDs. I was hired for my full-time TT position as an ABD and it was listed as "open rank."
Apply for any/all places you want to work. Every job post means something different. But from the outside you'll never know. Just apply and let the committee decide.
Absolutely not. It could mean:
A) Looking primarily for assistant professor, but keeping option for more senior person open if someone amazing applies.
B) Truly open, just looking for best candidate for their career stage
C) and so on. If you are interested, apply!
Just simply to confirm what others have stated already: I am on a SC at a SLAC and our "open rank" search means we are looking for the best hire (in reality, something probably closer to option A from SearchCommitteeChair).
As others stated, I think it could mean anything. If I were running a search committee and I had the option to list a job at open rank (i.e. the administration was willing to pay for a higher salary for a senior hire) I would, so that I could consider a larger pool. Often open rank positions exist for specific positions. But I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of the time open rank still meant assistant professor preferred.
I was on my 3rd year of postdoc last year and applied to an open rank position at a highly ranked R1 institution only because my partner really liked the area and wasn't loving some of the other places I applied - I assumed there was no chance as I interpreted open rank to mean someone more senior. I not only got a on-campus interview but also the job offer. I ultimately took a different offer, but it completely demonstrates that the SC was looking for the best candidate and that doesn't at all mean it has to be an almost tenured or tenured person. Sorry to be cliche, but it's about fit! Good luck!
I am on an open rank search committee this year and we will be looking at all ranks. It is an open level search because we want to have the option to hire someone that is great, but not that expensive (assistant professor) OR spend some extra money to recruit an established superstar (associate/full professor).
From my experience on open rank SCs and applying for open rank jobs back in the day, the vast majority of these searches are not for entry-level candidates unless you're a superstar. Most frequently these are for a particular niche (full prof, associate) later on in a career and very often the SC "invites" candidates to apply such that they have a preselected candidate.
In short if you're entry-level (especially grad students) don't get your hopes up about an open rank listing — unless you're a superstar like asstprof2 and are in line to get multiple offers anyways