HI folks — I am currently at a lower tier state school, 3/3 teaching load, less-than-strong undergrad pool, but also a doc program. I am also at the 'advanced assistant' level, but actively seeking either a stronger SLAC or an R1/2. Here's my problem: I feel like my research is too interdisciplinary, and finding a fit is tough. I am going on the market full board, applying to anything that is loosely a fit. I am tailoring cover letters, teaching/research statements, and even my CV (occassionally). On paper I look publication heavy, but don't have the grant history for most R1s. I'm afraid SLACs will view me as too research heavy, and R1s won't work out due to lack of a large grant history. Any advice for handling the interdisciplinary 'fit' issue, or being stuck between SLAC——R1???
Date: 04 Aug 2014 02:59
Number of posts: 7
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If you are trying to get an upgrade on a SLAC, you won't be viewed as too research-y with a lot of publications. It also looks GOOD for a SLAC if you have publications on lots of different, varied topics, because you were working with students who have random interests.
That said, I suppose you could look "too research heavy" if your teaching is only so-so. So your teaching, if it's not that great, could eliminate you from consideration at some SLACs, but no one will think you have too much research if you're looking for an upgrade from your current position. I hope your research did include undergraduates, though.
i was in an institution like yours, a state school with 3/3 load with a master's program. i recently moved to another place with 2/2 load and hopefully i will be happier here. my new school is not r1/2 but of course, but the research expectation is of course higher (more pubs) than my previous institution. last year, i have interviews with quite a few of schools (7 of them) that are not r1/2 but have pretty nice teaching load (2/2 or 3/2). so if you are not looking for a branded place, there are plenty of them out there.
second, while i was in a master's level state school, we always have job candidates that are research superstars. Your guess is right; although they are favorable, people worry that an institution like us may not be a good fit. in other words, it is hard to retain these folks. so we typically go town the ladder and find a secondary candidate whom we view as a better fit to our department. it is sad, but it is true.
"second, while i was in a master's level state school, we always have job candidates that are research superstars. Your guess is right; although they are favorable, people worry that an institution like us may not be a good fit. in other words, it is hard to retain these folks. so we typically go town the ladder and find a secondary candidate whom we view as a better fit to our department. it is sad, but it is true."
Really? People on search committees do this in today's job market? What is a candidate to do when they can't land a position? I can understand not being teaching-oriented enough for a particular institution but I can't wrap my mind around a candidate being "too good" for a school.
I'm at a SLAC and we strongly value faculty who have demonstrated interdisciplinary research and interests. At many SLACs you might be the only faculty member with your specific sub-field specialty on campus. So, the capacity to collaborate with other faculty, especially in other disciplines is an asset.
My biggest tip for SLAC applications is to spin your research such that you emphasize how it benefits and involves students. SLACs love this and many of them require students to do some sort of a senior year project.
thanks for the advice folks. I have seen first-hand the fear of certain applicants treating a place as a potential "stepping stone" and this is part of my concern. I am not looking for the stepping stone kind of thing…I want to settle in long term somewhere. So, the best I can do (I think) is address the issue directly in my cover letter and with letter writers…and in an interview if I can get one.
I will emphasize the interdisciplinary and student involvement! Thanks for the input!
If you can throw in some personal reasons for the move (e.g., family, partner's relocation ), that would be viewed plosives as well. Of course, that has to be secondary.