Monday, March 11, 2013

You asked for it...

Anon has graciously asked for input from Smokers re: "best practices" in hiring.

I'm about to advertise a position (VAP or TT depending upon meeting with administration today), and I'd really like some insight into what works best for folks on the applicant side...
So, questions that I have: 
  • Preferable advertisement venues these days? (JFP--but where else?)
  • Application materials (best practices, in my day it was letter, reference letters x 3, teaching excellence (evidence of), writing sample, C.V.) 
  • Application media? What is best? I'm assuming electronic applications via email?
  • How about advertisement--what do you want to know that isn't always included? (I've been on senior admin searches where a fairly extensive "position profile) *8-10 pages) is produced describing the institution and the position desiderata), it always seems strange that we limit advertisements to 1 paragraph half of which is identical to all the ads in the JFP.
  • Skype vs phone for preliminaries?
  • Obviously attention to negative notification is important :)
  • Campus visits--what works, what frustrates?
  • VAP's vs TT-- differences in applications?
Anyway, much of this info is probably somewhere on the site, but developing a set of best practices from the perspective of job seekers could have a very beneficial effect on the profession.
This calls for some constructive advice, don't you think? What's on your wish list, Smokers?



Anonymous said...

Main preference: don't advertise. Just email it to me. That way no else can apply. I'm awesome, so this won't hurt you in any way.

More seriously:
Just advertise in PhilJobs. That'll save you money and I'd be shocked if it will decrease the number of applicants you get. Everyone reads it. Forget the APA.

Application media. I think is by far the best for submitting our stuff (at least as far as we job seekers goes). Works fantastically. But electronic delivery is best even if it's a different delivery system.

One thing about the advertisement: rather than "evidence of teaching excellence" if you could say exactly what sort of evidence you find valuable (syllabi? evals? teaching statement? statement about which of your courses we have experience teaching (or could teach)? something else?). Personally, I can send any number of different things, and I try to guess what the search committee is looking for, and often worry that I'm guessing wrong.

Anonymous said...

1. JFP + Philjobs
2. State if you expect to see something in cover letter (e.g., demonstrated eagerness for teaching at a SLAC)
3. -
4. -
5. -
6. -
7. Well thought-through itinerary (who will take candidate where, scheduled break esp. before talk, clearly communicate whether will meet with administrators and why)
8. -

Anonymous said...

1. JFP alone is fine. Someone will post it to philjobs anyway. But if you feel like being nice, go ahead and post directly to philjobs in addition to JFP.
2. I don't care, but just make explicit both what you want (e.g. send CV, writing sample) and what you don't want (e.g. do not send teaching portfolio, transcript). I'm going to send it all unless I'm explicitly told not to send something.
5. Skype. Hands down. Not even close. I find the phone very, very awkward. Even more awkward than Skype.

Anonymous said...

1. JFP alone is fine. It will get added to philjobs as soon as it appears in the JFP. If you're feeling extra nice, you can go ahead and post to philjobs, though.
2. Make it explicit both what you do want (e.g. send CV, writing sample) and what you do not want (e.g. do not send transcripts, teaching portfolio). If it isn't explicitly ruled out, I'm sending my entire portfolio.
5. Skype, easily. Both are a little awkward, but a well managed skype interview with the proper technology is better than any phone interview. It's very difficult to figure out who's supposed to be talking on the phone.

Anonymous said...


Seriously? Even when a SC explicitly states what they want, you send them everything they didn't ask for just because they didn't say "don't send X?"

How obnoxious.

Anonymous said...

1. Philjobs.
2. State clearly whatever materials you want. Don't set up the applications so that only three references can be submitted. Almost everyone I know has more these days.
3. Academicjobsonline works well enough, as does Interfolio (which is free for students who are APA members), but the very best and easiest in my opinion is for the candidate just to email the materials. Confirmation email is important: I found out weeks later this year that one place had simply not received my emailed materials, even though I definitely sent them.
4. Can't think of anything that isn't usually included.
5. Definitely Skype. Let the candidate know who will be skyping with him/her.
6. ...
7. Please offer the candidate to book the flight for him/her. I had to shell out about $3000 for flights, etc. in advance. I know it'll be reimbursed, but grad students don't normally have that kind of money in their savings account. Also, clarify what other expenses will be reimbursed. Airport transportation in the departure city? Meals during the trip?
Please send the itinerary ahead of time, and make sure the candidate knows where s/he is staying and how transportation will be arranged.
Then there are some obvious things: make sure you ask about health and/or dietary needs. Feed the candidate three meals a day. Explain ahead of time what will be expected of them as part of the job talk, teaching demonstration, etc. Don't ask inappropriate personal questions.

8. ...

Anonymous said...

1. JFP
2. As others have said, be explicit. I would expect fewer materials for a VAP than a tt unless you plan on making the VAP hire a tt hire down the line.
3. Interfolio. I would have to use interfolio anyway in order to send my letters (I don't have copies myself so I would have to use Interfolio)
4. I want you to be honest. What classes will I will be teaching? What will be responsibilities and duties be? Grad teaching? Committee work?
5. I don't care. Skype introduces some implicit bias problems that phone interviews eliminate but phone interviews have their own problems so go with your heart on this one.
6. Re: Campus visits: you make the arrangements but give me as much notice as is feasibly possible (so that I can plan my future around it). Make the campus visit schedule as clear as possible. In a perfect world you would give me at least a half day before the visit to settle in to my hotel room, get used to the time change, and get a couple of practice rounds (for interviews, teaching, etc) in to settle my nerves.
7. As I say in #2, I would expect fewer materials for a VAP position. I would also *not* expect a flyout for a VAP position (assuming it is a 1-year VAP).

Thanks for being open to suggestions. That means a lot!

Anonymous said...

Are there any departments that did a particularly good job with campus visits this year? If so, call them out and have them comment on how they did them.

Anonymous said...

1. JFP, Philjobs
2. Also don't care, except that having to send formal transcripts is obnoxious and potentially costly.
3. Something like Interfolio or academicjobsonline is nice, since you can ask your letter-writers to upload a letter once and then not have to bother them about it again. I'd steer away from email for this reason.
4. I definitely want to know the teaching load and it's kind of nice to know what pay I can expect, too. Would also be good to know up front if there is an expectation of things like active grant writing.
5. Definitely skype. I second whoever said that it's very hard to know who should be (or *is*) talking on the phone and very easy to cut people off.
6. Yup.
7. A good balance of down time and on time is helpful - it's nice to have time to settle in, to prep before your talk/teaching demo, but it's also nice not to have things too stretched out, especially since many people will be missing teaching at their current jobs. Also - let your candidate actually eat at meals, rather than answering questions the *entire* time! I've never been as hungry as at the end of a fly-out. And the point about time differences is good - especialy if you're flying someone in from overseas, or from the other coast, it's nice to offer them a recovery day before the interviews if you can.
8. It would be good to just be able to use the many of the same materials for VAP applications that you've already prepped for TT applications. So.... no weird stuff?

Anonymous said...

2:25 -

Yes. There's little cost and lots of potential for benefit. Many schools that haven't advertised in a decade or longer simply don't know that many candidates now have full teaching portfolios rather than just a teaching statement.

Some departments are quite impressed when they get slick looking materials they didn't ask for. No way am I going to give up that potential advantage. Why should I?

Anonymous said...

On the TT vs VAP application procedure: There are vast differences between VAP positions. At some places, a VAP has the same teaching load as regular faculty, is paid close to what starting TT people earn, and is treated like a member of the department. At others, the VAPs have very high teaching loads, earn little, and are not treated like members of the department. If you are a place of the first kind, put something in the add to indicate as much: information about the teaching load, mention that you will be doing a fly out for the position. This tells applicants something about how they will be treated if they get the job and makes the position more attractive.

Anonymous said...


It's only an advantage if it gets you a job.

Anonymous said...

@10:56 there exist probabilities between 0 and 1.

Anonymous said...

Two things:
Skype is terrible, but there is good videoconferencing hardware. My best long-distance interviews were on the phone, one-on-one. If you have to do a one-many interview, look for professional equipment.

I'm skeptical of any SC that takes its cue from this blog. I mean, it's a nice place to vent or to gather some ideas, but I don't see any reason to think that it provides a good (i.e. representative) sample of opinion.

Anonymous said...


In my experience, there is getting the job and not getting the job. Any other way of looking at the market is an attempt to soothe one's wounded ego.

Anonymous said...

FWIW, I think this is a good forum to ask about these things. This is a blog where people visit with ample experience on the other side of the search!
1. JFP and philjobs, perhaps also e-mail an announcement through PhilUpdates and Philos-L. This can make a big difference if you're advertising outside of normal job season in attracting more applicants.
2. Materials: letter, reference letters from 3 people (I do not think these are so important, so 3 should be sufficient, but don't penalize those who send more), writing sample, CV, brief teaching statement, research statement.
3. E-mail for everything is least hassle. Interfolio is a good second choice.
4. Give an idea of what the person is expected to teach, the sort of research environment you provide, something specifically on the school, e.g., if it's a SLAC with a specific ideological or religious profile etc
5. Skype, definitely. Less awkward than phone. I've done both.
6. Negative confirmation: The really nice thing to do is to notify people at each stage.
*first-round: notify all candidates that have not been selected for first-round interview.
*on campus: notify those people who are still live candidates but haven't been picked for on campus (say, the next 3 or 4 on your list) that they are still live candidates, but also that you have invited n people to campus. Tell them you will contact them asap if you still invite them to the on campus (and give a timeline of when this would happen). Those who aren't live candidates should at this stage also get a polite rejection letter.
*after on campus: let all on campus candidates know who weren't top candidates but still live candidates that an offer has been extended. Something like "We want you to know you are still a live candidate, but we have made an offer. We don't know how the negotiations will turn out. We will notify you as soon as possible."
In my experience, at this point, people are sometimes left hanging for weeks and even months. A SC member told me once that this was because they didn't want me to know I was not their top choice, in case they had to pick me (second on the list). I cannot stress enough that I really don't mind being second choice, and I would never hold that against a SC! With so many excellent candidates out there, and such a tough job market, I can't imagine job candidates having such an ego. If that is the only qualm, please let people know as soon as an offer is made and negotiations are on the way...
7. Provide enough down time and a clearly outlined itinerary on beforehand. Also, I found it very helpful in deciding to take the job that one of the SC members had reserved several hours to give me a tour of the campus, drive around in the neighborhood, to look at suburbs where faculty were living, what there was to do (museums, restaurants, etc), and shops, schools, and other facilities.
8. --

Anonymous said...

E-mail as a way to provide materials sucks. What is needed is depository for materials that candidates can check for completeness and that search committee members can go to themselves to look at files (that is, something that does not require further distribution to search committee members after submission). Academic Jobs Online has this awesomeness.

Anonymous said...

8:01 -

I suspect the operative issue is whether one has the necessary software to put together a portfolio.

If you have Adobe Acrobat Pro, then e-mail is clearly the best and cheapest way to get materials to a search committee.

If you don't have it (or something comparable to create a single PDF file), I imagine e-mail is more awkward.

Anonymous said...

Original anon here:

Thanks for the input--despite the naysayer it is helpful to canvas even unscientifically like this to figure out the sorts of things that matter to candidates--at least we can try to be attentive to some of this. We'll not be able to satisfy everyone and we'll screw some stuff up somewhere along the way, but we'll try to do our best.

So, thanks for all of the constructive comments and perhaps we'll meet one day.

Here's something else to discuss--it's got some good advice in it.

Good luck to all!

Anonymous said...

Mostly, this is because 2:09's arrogance annoys me.

Committees should penalize the person that sends more than was asked for

1. You failed to follow directions
A shotgun approach shows that either you don’t know what things are important or you cannot adjudicate between the things asked for and the things not asked for. Not being able to tell the difference between what was asked for and what wasn’t is bad but if you did know that you were sending too much then…

2. It is bad form
Either you think the people asking don’t know what they want or that they are wrong about what they want. Either way, it implies that the people that advertised don’t know what they are doing, which is a bad first impression. But maybe you think they do know what they are asking for, in which case…

3. You are trying to gain an (unfair) advantage
You want the committee to consider more information about you then they will be getting from other candidates; a fourth and fifth letter of recommendation can help smooth over or clarify things left unsaid or said oddly in the first three. You are trying to cram more data into your evaluation than what the average applicant has – you are trying to gain a leg up that isn’t found in your package alone. This might be fine except…

4. It, in fact, harms those that don’t send more than was asked
Those who follow directions in submitting their application will be in a worse position than those who don’t. The addition of more information by some candidates demands that other candidates send more data as well. Anyone that doesn’t send more data will therefore be worse off than they had been if everyone had simply sent the information asked for. Unless, of course, the committee ignores the extra information that you sent but in that case…

5. It, then, forces the committee to choose which materials to consider
You are making the committee do extra work. If you send 5 letters but they only asked for 3 and in order to be fair the committee choose to only consider 3 of the letters, then the committee has to choose which three to consider. You are making the committee do more work while they already have a lot of work to do (what with the 300 some odd applications they are getting – not to mention the affect if some non-negligible percentage of applications acts as you do.)

But all of this puts the committee in an awkward position. Either they have to ignore some of your material or they must accept that it will lead to an escalation of sending more than was asked for. Even if the committee pares down the full packet, the process of doing so will select for the most favorable portions, which encourages sending more than is necessary; ignoring parts of the packet actually makes the packet better. Packet paring benefits the person that ignores the rules – again, it encourages escalation. The only way to discourage escalation is to apply a penalty for sending too much.

Therefore, the committee should penalize the person that sends more than was asked for

Anonymous said...

For campus visits that cover two days, the chance to eat alone at some point. Maybe breakfasts, where the candidate gets it by themselves before getting picked up; or one dinner off, or lunch, or something. It is really tough to be 'on' for three meals a day for two days. It means really not getting enough to eat, because one is often talking/answering questions, or feeling like one should be talking or doing something, for all those meals. Sometimes you just want to eat and take a breather and not worry about whether you are being sufficiently engaging or polite or interesting or whether you dripped something on your shirt, etc.

Elizabeth Harman said...

My understanding is that job ads list the minimum materials they want to receive. Everyone knows that many people have more than three letters and absent explicit statement otherwise, hiring committees are usually happy to see all the letters. Similarly for e.g. Teaching statement, future research statement, even if not specifically requested. 11:16am is mistaken about professional norms. (Some search committee members might find some of the extra materials silly, but it is unlikely to hurt and might help.)

Anonymous said...


At my university, we are prohibited from considering materials not asked for in the ad, because we are required to consider applicants by the exact same criteria.

So when we get something extra, we toss it. We don't judge those applicants harshly for doing so, but they may be harmed when we toss letters. If we get 5 letters and ask for 3, we toss 2 letters before we read them. I suppose there's a chance those tossed letters are the informative ones, the useful ones, the ones that sell the applicant best.

Anonymous said...

Email isn't such a good method of submission, because then I (and most candidates, I imagine) have to use Interfolio to email my letters. Academic jobs is much better.

Anonymous said...


Where did you get that understanding? I have always been told the opposite and agree with others that sending more than is asked for will likely do you far more harm than good.

Anonymous said...

My understanding agrees with Professor Harman's (5:14 above). I teach at a SLAC and when we prepare job advertisements and provide a list of materials, it is a list of the minimum set of materials we expect. Many applicants submit more than three letters of recommendation for example and we're interested in reading all of them. I realize that departments at some other institutions are not permitted to consider additional material that was not explicitly requested, but that is really unfortunate.

Anonymous said...

First, don't interview at APA!

Then, when it's time for campus visits:
- Fail to provide a real breakfast (vs. the "continental" spread at the hotel) during campus visits.
- Make it impossible to eat during meals.
- Keep candidates on campus for more time than is necessary (which, really, should just be a single day).
- Request (even "optional") materials from the candidate less than a week before his or her visit.
- Make candidates front the money for plane tickets.
- Fail to send a detailed itinerary less than a few days in advance.
- Fail just to let candidates know what's up and where they stand in your pecking order.
- Attack candidates aggressively about everything they say during their visit.

Mr. Zero said...

I think 11:16's hostility toward people who send more material than is specifically asked for is unwarranted. Not because I think 2:09's policy is the right one--it's not--but because sending extra stuff is not evidence that you're an incompetent asshole, it's just evidence that you're a normal human being who makes occasional mistakes. Maybe I put that sample syllabus in there inadvertently; maybe I mistakenly thought you'd want to see it. Either way, I don't see how it's poor form, unfair, or otherwise disqualifying.

We discussed whether '3 letters' means "at least 3" or "at most 3" a few years ago, here. It seemed to me then and seems to me now that there is good reason to send more than three letters if they're strong and helpful. (Some of this is rehash from the '09 post.)

First, it is clear that some search committees are interested in reading additional letters, even if they specifically say they want three. Second, customizing the letter packet creates additional work for the person who sends it out, which is often an already-overworked department secretary.

Third, if I have to send exactly three letters, I'll want to send my three best ones, and I don't know which ones those are because my letters are confidential and I don't know what they say. I could ask my advisor which are the three strongest, but I don't think this is customary. (Is it? Do people generally do this? I've never heard of it.) And it's likely that there won't be any single trio of strongest letters--you'll want to be sure to send your strongest teaching letter to SLACs, but you might have another letter you want to send to NYU. And now we're creating even more work for the department secretary, and introducing even more ways for things to go wrong.

And so I still think that you should send as many helpful letters as you can accumulate, within reason, and that it's a bad idea to limit yourself to only three. I think that if search committees are really interested in finding out who the applicants are and what they're like, they'd be interested in reading additional letters. And I think that even if you're not interested in any additional letters, there's no reason to blow your stack if you get them. You're being very un-dude, 11:16.

The Undude said...

[11:16 here]

"You're being very un-dude" - well, that's just, like, your opinion, man.

I'd like to think that I can be as charitable as the next person. We all make mistakes from time to time. I know that I do; I once mistakenly attached the wrong cover letter to a packet that was being sent out. So, yeah, maybe your syllabi were in the packet because of an oversight. I hear ya! And, likely, I'll just ignore it.

But the comment I was responding to was not that;
"There's little cost and lots of potential for benefit. Many schools that haven't advertised in a decade or longer simply don't know that many candidates now have full teaching portfolios rather than just a teaching statement."
This is not a mistake. This looks a lot like "I know more about what they want then they do" which is fine, if that is the attitude you want to present. But since the question was one of cost/benefit it seemed appropriate to show that there could, indeed, be quite a high cost, especially given the possibility of escalation. If 2:09 is correct then there is no incentive to send only what departments ask for. But that just seems absurd. Why list the materials you want in the first place?

But, I'm sticking by my guns on the idea that sending more [letters] than they ask for ruins the status quo. If you send 5, then I have to send 5 because otherwise I am at a disadvantage if I don't. But, they only asked for 3 so I ought not be disadvantaged for doing what was asked. There is a lot of talk on this blog about how candidates should be judged on a level playing field; we want to avoid implicit bias and the halo effect and anything else that wasn't strictly about the merit of the candidate. It seems to me that the mere fact that one person has 5 letters while another has only 3 tips the scale (did the person with 3 not have 2 other references?). That one person sent only the teaching statement asked for while another sent a glossy teaching portfolio unbalances the evaluation (did the former person not have a video showing her given a fantastic lecture?). Candidates should send only what the committee asked for and committees should consider only those materials that they asked for.

Mr. Zero said...

Hi Undude,

But the comment I was responding to was not that;
"There's little cost and lots of potential for benefit. Many schools that haven't advertised in a decade or longer simply don't know that many candidates now have full teaching portfolios rather than just a teaching statement."

Yeah, the suggestion that you oughtta send your full teaching portfolio with every application because there are search committees who might not know that they can ask for things like course evals is pretty silly. But unless he includes a note saying that's why he sent it, you wouldn't know.

But, I'm sticking by my guns on the idea that sending more [letters] than they ask for ruins the status quo. If you send 5, then I have to send 5 because otherwise I am at a disadvantage if I don't.

That's true. But getting additional letters, particularly from outside people who know and think highly of your work, really is one of the best things a candidate can do to improve his/her dossier. It is and advantage. But that's the point, and the fact that it's an advantage doesn't mean it's unfair.

And I think that the status quo really is that 'three letters' means "at least three," not "exactly three." When this comes up, people say, make sure the letters are good; or they say, don't go overboard with additional letters; but very few people say, three means three. Almost nobody says that.

Anonymous said...


9:03 is one reason why 12:31 was wrong.

yes, one might forget how stressful meals can be for candidates, and how helpful moments of peace with food can be.

Thanks again

Anonymous said...

Reimbursement/purchase policies are typically institutional. There isn't an option for SCs. It makes no sense, but. . ..

Anonymous said...

Please keep in mind that scheduling campus visits for candidates is not at all an easy thing to do, and what often ends up being a jam-packed day is the result of necessity, not design. It's common for candidates to need to do the following:
-make a presentation to the department faculty
-meet with the department chair individually
-meet with the dean
-meet with the provost and/or president
-increasingly, provide a teaching demonstration.

All of the above individuals have their own schedules that need to be accommodated. Sometimes, this makes for a crammed and busy schedule. Sometimes, this makes for breaks at odd times. (I had a campus interview that had a break from 9-11 am, and I was busy from 8-9 and then again from 11-5, without any other breaks.)

I've yet to meet the faculty member that didn't recognize how tough this is for the candidates. But sadly, accommodations for candidates come second to institutional demands.

Anonymous said...

I honestly had never heard that you should send more materials than were specifically asked for and feel quite cheated about sticking to the materials requested in a particular job application.

It does seem patently unfair to compare candidate materials that were not requested. This penalizes someone (at least potentially) who follows the rules. I seriously now think that I should send all my application materials with every application I send out (if you're throwing out what you don't read then it seems like I don't suffer anything and if the extra material gives me a leg up then screw listening to what you said you wanted).

I feel like I've been genuinely being screwed by cooperating in a prisoner's dilemma.

Anonymous said...

10:00 -

I'm the person who originally mentioned the issue of sending more than asked for, so let me clarify a bit. What I meant was that there are some ads that pretty obviously leave out some of the things they want.

For instance, if a job ad requests a "teaching statement," I sent the full teaching portfolio (with sample syllabi, evals, and a summary of the courses I've taught). Why? It's obviously relevant.

Another example: If a job ad requests a writing sample but doesn't mention the research statement, I go ahead and send the research statement anyway. Why? Again, it's obviously relevant, given what they've requested.

Perhaps the most controversial example: If a teaching school requests a writing sample, but doesn't say anything about teaching in the ad (don't laugh, it totally happens), I still send the teaching portfolio anyway. Why? Again, given what the school is up to, it seems relevant.

Like Prof. Harman said, I really don't think this violates any professional norms. I think you've just got to read the ad, do a little background research on the school, and be smart about it. That's all.

zombie said...

I seem to recall job ads that say "at least 3 letters," which certainly suggests that more than 3 is permissible. If an ad said "no more than 3" I would send only the three (likely) best.

Given how laborious and time consuming it is for an SC to read through hundreds of dossiers, I can't imagine they bother reading material they have not asked for, and do not want to consider (at least in the first read). I certainly would not. Perhaps some would penalize a candidate for failing to follow instructions, but the instructions in most job ads are (at best) somewhat vague, so this seems rather petty. That doesn't mean it can't happen, of course, but I wouldn't go crazy worrying about it.

Anonymous said...

I'm a bit confused about the emphasis by some committee members on the pre-vocational skill of following directions to the letter. Do you have your potential candidates demonstrate, as part of the interview process, sorting cups according to size and color, arranging things according to a common pattern, alphabetizing a series of words (maximal lexicographic ordering) and the like? What kind of job are we talking about here, stocking shelves?

In my experience my professors ignored every deadline, rarely graded papers in a timely fashion (you might get a little feed back years after turning in a final paper, on time, while being hounded by the grad school for having "incompletes"), turned grad seminars into horrible student presentations (week after bloody week of the worst presentations imaginable), failed miserably at the simplest pedagogical exercises, failed to train graduate students in the basic tools of the trade (taught the same seminar every single year, no changes), indeed, they violated almost every norm expected between civilized parties engaged in a collective enterprise. Indeed, at my old PhD granting department two faculty members sexually harassed female students (repeatedly)--and got away with it.

I think the profession is in such serious decline that worrying about the number of letters of recommendation a student sends with an app is pretty fucking minor...

Anonymous said...

5:16: I get the point you're trying to make -- your professors sucked. But you're describing, at best, the faculty at an R1 with a graduate program. Most university positions, probably 90%, are at institutions where this sort behavior doesn't fly.

Anonymous said...


Given the massive number of qualified applicants to any given job, some SCs look for any reason to thin the herd. Getting your application postmarked on time, or having it received by the SC on time, may also matter. As might spelling mistakes, putting the wrong name of the school in your letter, etc.

Is it fair? Many would say no. But then again, many would also say that there is no fair means of selecting applicants anyway.

The sad truth is, even when SCs make their bone-headed cuts, they still have a large number of qualified applications to wade through.

The best advice I ever heard was, "don't give SCs a reason to cut you early." One of the major battles is getting the SC to give your application a thorough, sympathetic read. And all too often, the minor mistakes give them a reason not to do that.

Anonymous said...

I sympathize 5:16. I'm in the exact same position. I have now begun to realize just how much of job market success is due to having the unique combination of competent and kind faculty who are willing to fucking do the job they are being paid to do. If I were an understudy in learning how to be an asshole I would be doing great; in philosophy, not so much.