Job Seekers Information Meeting 9/18

Job Seekers Information Meeting 9/18

There will be an orientation/information meeting for job seekers with Prof. Noel Carroll on Tuesday, September 18 between 2 and 4 in the thesis room.

Information Concerning the Job Market

                If you are going onto the job market this year, you should ask your recommenders to prepare their letters for you, if you have not already done so (you should have at least three letters).  This year’s placement director, Noël Carroll, will look at your letters of recommendation if you letter writers are willing to allow him to do so.  Carroll’s e-mail address is

Now would also be a good time to think about the writing sample that you would like to include in your job folder.  Usually one selects one of one’s more successful term papers or, if you have one, a published (or an about to be published) article.  You should select your sample in consultation with your adviser, since your adviser will be expertly informed about what is desirable research in your area of specialization.  Since departments will be processing large numbers of applications, it would be prudent for you to include an abstract of your writing sample.  Also, for the same reason, don’t choose a massive writing sample; that risks not being read in toto.

If you have not already prepared a cv, you should do so now.  It should list your personal information (name, address, phone number, e-mail address and, if you wish, gender, marital status, and ethnicity); be sure to list your contact information for the period of December, if it differs from your permanent contact information.  Next the cv should contain your educational history – undergraduate school and major/minor (and if you graduated with honors, state the honor); graduate school and expected graduation date, if you have not already graduated, as well as the title of your thesis and the name of your adviser (and committee members, if you wish).  This should be followed by a statement of your area or areas of specialization and then your areas of teaching competence.  This should be followed by the languages you can read, speak, write; this is especially important if certain languages are essential to your field of specialization (as German is to Kant studies).  Next list your publications, if any, followed by a list of your professional, philosophical presentations (papers, comments, panel discussions, etc.)  Also, list any relevant professional activities (e.g., if you have been an article referee for professional journals, a conference organizer, memberships in professional organizations, etc.). After that, list any academic awards or honors that you have received.  Follow that by a list of the courses that you have taught.  Lastly, include a short synopsis of your dissertation. This can also be followed by a longer, more detailed description of your project.  But make sure you also have a short synopsis in order to assure that it gets read.

Some institutions will request  statements about your philosophy of teaching and about your future research plans.  In any  event, even if not asked, you may include in your dossier a statement of ongoing research interests, a statement of your teaching philosophy, and copies of course evaluations (if you have them and especially if they are favorable).

The placement officer will go over your cv with you upon request.

With regard to teaching, it would be advantageous to have at least one of your letter writers address your teaching at length.  It would be particularly useful if that person has observed your teaching and is prepared to comment (favorably) on it.

Some schools will request a writing sample, so be sure to have one available.  As mentioned above, choose this sample in consultation with your thesis adviser.  Be sure to send a cover letter with your applications, expressing your interest in the job.  Use this letter as an opportunity to state very briefly why you think you are suited for the job.  In some cases, you may wish to modify your cover letter and cv in order to suit the special requirements stated by some of the schools in which you are interested.  Since some schools emphasize teaching and others research, it is useful to have a cover letter tailored for each type.  The placement director will look at your cover letter at your request.

Positions are advertized in Jobs for Philosophers to which you can subscribe by joining the American Philosophical Associations.  Jobs for Philosophers has merged with PhilJobs.  The PhilJobs URL is htt://

Job announcements are also posted on the bulletin board in the offices of the Graduate Philosophy Program.  Most job interviews are held at the Eastern Division Meetings of the American Philosophical Association.  This year this meeting will be held in Baltimore.  Prior to your actual interview, you should try to arrange to have a mock interview. We are in the process of trying to arrange three days in December that will be dedicated to mock interviews.  If those dates turn out to be impossible for you, ask your thesis adviser and at least two other faculty members to stage an interview for you.  Also, practice a short statement about yourself and your scholarly interests in case the interviewers start by asking you for one.

When going to an interview, it is useful for you to bring copies of syllabi for courses you’ve taught as well as for courses that you would like to teach.  Be sure to have enough copies for everyone in the room.  These syllabi will help focus the conversation

If your interview is successful and you are invited for a campus visit, you will be expected to give a class and/or a talk.  So, have a talk and a class ready.  If possible, try giving the talk and/or class to people in the here at the graduate program.  Often people choose a chapter (or a part thereof) of their dissertation as their talk.  Choose your campus talk in consultation with your thesis advisor.  It should be about 45 minutes to an hour long.

There will be a information meeting with the placement director in September 18 from 2-4 in the thesis room.  This meeting will give you the opportunity to ask everything you ever wanted to know about job hunting.  If you are unable to come to the meeting, you can make an appointment with the placement director.  His office hours are 3-4 on Wednesdays.  If that is not a good time for you, we can arrange a phone appointment.

The placement director will be available at the convention should you need to consult with him.  The program will also have a table at the reception.

The school recommends that you have your dossier processed by Interfolio.  Go to the Graduate School Page, click on Current Students, then click on academic resources, dossier services, interfolio.