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Author Topic: Applying to SLACs  (Read 109824 times)
heywhynots
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« Reply #90 on: April 04, 2012, 6:49:25 AM »

Jump in and say for one-year VAP positions, we toss out ABDs.  Too many with Ph.D.s in hand with additional teaching & research experience. 
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mainelyfailing
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« Reply #91 on: April 04, 2012, 7:06:14 AM »

I know ABD doesn't help, but I think once you're in the final 2 or 3 they are taking your candidacy seriously. Never once in the interview did they ask about the state of completion of the diss, my defense date, or even ask for a writing sample (I'm sure they looked at my pubs). One of the interviewers even talked up how great the library network was if I was and how light the teaching load (2/3) if I were still working on the diss in the fall.  They seemed 100 percent focused on the teaching (of which I have more experience than most first year assistant professors).  It's probably the case that I was a "back up" candidate all along in case the stronger candidates got TT offers. I guess I was holding out for the miracle!

Hoping to file in August. Unfortunately I just wasted close to a month obsessing over this job!

Onward!
« Last Edit: April 04, 2012, 7:08:15 AM by mainelyfailing » Logged
msparticularity
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« Reply #92 on: April 04, 2012, 1:08:59 PM »

I know ABD doesn't help, but I think once you're in the final 2 or 3 they are taking your candidacy seriously. Never once in the interview did they ask about the state of completion of the diss, my defense date, or even ask for a writing sample (I'm sure they looked at my pubs). One of the interviewers even talked up how great the library network was if I was and how light the teaching load (2/3) if I were still working on the diss in the fall.  They seemed 100 percent focused on the teaching (of which I have more experience than most first year assistant professors).  It's probably the case that I was a "back up" candidate all along in case the stronger candidates got TT offers. I guess I was holding out for the miracle!

Hoping to file in August. Unfortunately I just wasted close to a month obsessing over this job!

Onward!


I think you are still underestimating the effect of your ABD status. One of the things that SCs start to work through, once they've eliminated anyone who really blew it, is the question of which candidate is going to most easily make tenure. While a teaching-intensive place will be interested in you for your teaching experience and skills and the publications will be less important, the ABD status will scare them because you are, quite simply, not tenurable without the doctorate. This can even be a reason for a Dean to refuse to go with a department's first choice. Furthermore, this problem is going to get worse with every passing year; yours and your advisor's assurances that you are nearly done become less and less believable.

Seriously, do yourself a favor and finish your diss this summer; failure to do this is making you unemployable.
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"Once admit that the sole verifiable or fruitful object of knowledge is the particular set of changes that generate the object of study...and no intelligible question can be asked about what, by assumption, lies outside." John Dewey

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seniorscholar
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« Reply #93 on: April 04, 2012, 2:27:05 PM »

When I have students on the market, even with a scheduled defense date in their initial letter and an echo of that date in the letter I've written for Interfolio, I almost always get a phone call from the search committee (often between the MLA interview and the campus interview) asking me about their progress towards degree. That (not asking in the interview) is how they discover when the dissertation will be defended, if it is likely to pass the defense, and the final date at which it must be filed in order to have the degree in hand.
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academic_cog
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« Reply #94 on: April 05, 2012, 6:13:23 PM »

I have a question about doing a teaching demo for a Small-but-not-Selective SLAC. I know there are many threads about teaching demos but they are in a bit of conflict about pitching to the students vs the faculty in the room. If the interview doesn't do a "job talk" and the school is pretty much not research-oriented, how much would you make the teaching demo like one of your regular class sessions? (ie defining basic terms, calling on students, having them brainstorm how X is an influence on Y, etc.)

And if the job ad says they especially would like someone who covers X topic and that has nothing to do with your own research, but you have an already-prepared class day covering X from the intro survey class, would you use that, or would you use something that is more directly in line with your dissertation and research strengths?
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msparticularity
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« Reply #95 on: April 05, 2012, 7:27:55 PM »

Are they having you teach an actual class, or is this a pretend session in front of a random mix of faculty and students? If it's an actual class, you'll probably find it helpful to talk to the regular instructor about what would fit in with what s/he is already doing. If it's a random session, then I would probably suggest finding a part of your research that you could do a short teaching demo on for a mixed audience--subject to whatever the SCC says, of course.

Don't worry about asking what they would like, and it's a good idea to offer a couple of possible suggestions so they can help you figure out what would be most appropriate.
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"Once admit that the sole verifiable or fruitful object of knowledge is the particular set of changes that generate the object of study...and no intelligible question can be asked about what, by assumption, lies outside." John Dewey

"Be particular." Jill Conner Browne
amiens
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« Reply #96 on: April 22, 2012, 3:52:57 PM »

I know ABD doesn't help, but I think once you're in the final 2 or 3 they are taking your candidacy seriously. Never once in the interview did they ask about the state of completion of the diss, my defense date, or even ask for a writing sample (I'm sure they looked at my pubs). One of the interviewers even talked up how great the library network was if I was and how light the teaching load (2/3) if I were still working on the diss in the fall.  They seemed 100 percent focused on the teaching (of which I have more experience than most first year assistant professors).  It's probably the case that I was a "back up" candidate all along in case the stronger candidates got TT offers. I guess I was holding out for the miracle!

Hoping to file in August. Unfortunately I just wasted close to a month obsessing over this job!

Onward!


I think you are still underestimating the effect of your ABD status. One of the things that SCs start to work through, once they've eliminated anyone who really blew it, is the question of which candidate is going to most easily make tenure. While a teaching-intensive place will be interested in you for your teaching experience and skills and the publications will be less important, the ABD status will scare them because you are, quite simply, not tenurable without the doctorate. This can even be a reason for a Dean to refuse to go with a department's first choice. Furthermore, this problem is going to get worse with every passing year; yours and your advisor's assurances that you are nearly done become less and less believable.

Seriously, do yourself a favor and finish your diss this summer; failure to do this is making you unemployable.

I just want to echo this.  I went from having zero on-campus interviews at SLACs to having SIX invitations (a few that I declined because I'd taken a job) for on-campus interviews at SLACs and literally the only thing that changed about my CV between application cycles was that I finished my diss. 

My institution (certainly not one that you'd sniff at if you wanted a very good LAC job, but we're not Swarthmore or Amherst) is generally wary about ABD candidates because being a first-year faculty member here is more time consuming than most candidates can imagine.  It's not just teaching/prepping and expending the effort necessary to do research--there's all sorts of "learning the culture" stuff (receptions, going to campus events) that new faculty have to learn how to do well.  That stuff takes up an incredible amount of time and makes it very difficult to finish one's dissertation in a timely manner, which then affects tenure/promotion chances.  In most fields there are more than enough well-qualified researchers with wonderful teaching experience who already have their Ph.D. in hand--why risk an ABD and potential headache/heartbreak at the third year review?

Please, please finish. 
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existential_psych
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« Reply #97 on: June 24, 2012, 8:42:40 AM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

I would imagine that most don't have MBA programs and that without that cash-cow an AACSB accredited Ph.D. wouldn't be affordable (we average around 120k for a new-Ph.D.).

I think working with students on research and mentoring are two things that make the lower academic pay-check worth it; but taking a 50% cut in pay to be an academic is one thing (who needs 240k/y if you have to trade your soul to wall street?) but going to 25% so you can only make 60k to start seems like an insane sacrifice.
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msparticularity
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« Reply #98 on: June 24, 2012, 11:40:26 AM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

I would imagine that most don't have MBA programs and that without that cash-cow an AACSB accredited Ph.D. wouldn't be affordable (we average around 120k for a new-Ph.D.).

I think working with students on research and mentoring are two things that make the lower academic pay-check worth it; but taking a 50% cut in pay to be an academic is one thing (who needs 240k/y if you have to trade your soul to wall street?) but going to 25% so you can only make 60k to start seems like an insane sacrifice.

A SLAC is an undergrad institution--so no, no doctoral programs at all, and typically not business programs either since the focus is on the liberal arts.
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"Once admit that the sole verifiable or fruitful object of knowledge is the particular set of changes that generate the object of study...and no intelligible question can be asked about what, by assumption, lies outside." John Dewey

"Be particular." Jill Conner Browne
mended_drum
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« Reply #99 on: June 24, 2012, 11:49:47 AM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

My SLAC has majors in accounting and finance.  There are ten full-time faculty in that department, and six of them have Ph.D.s.
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envprof
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« Reply #100 on: June 24, 2012, 11:57:01 AM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

I would imagine that most don't have MBA programs and that without that cash-cow an AACSB accredited Ph.D. wouldn't be affordable (we average around 120k for a new-Ph.D.).

I think working with students on research and mentoring are two things that make the lower academic pay-check worth it; but taking a 50% cut in pay to be an academic is one thing (who needs 240k/y if you have to trade your soul to wall street?) but going to 25% so you can only make 60k to start seems like an insane sacrifice.

You've hit the nail on the head. If you don't consider teaching in a SLAC environment to be a vocation (translated: it isn't a major parameter in your utility function), it's not going to be a rational decision.

You may be able to split the difference if you look at smallish, selective research institutions that have a strong commitment to undergraduates (like Dartmouth or William and Mary). I'm not sure how many of those there are except that the number is far fewer than the number of research universities or liberal arts colleges. It's not going to be an easy job to get, but it's probably the closest fit.
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msparticularity
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« Reply #101 on: June 24, 2012, 12:43:50 PM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

My SLAC has majors in accounting and finance.  There are ten full-time faculty in that department, and six of them have Ph.D.s.

I don't think that was the question, though; the poster seemed interested in PhD programs. Just out of curiosity, are the programs in accounting and finance relatively recent for your SLAC? At several places that I know of, business degrees at the undergrad level were added in the 80s and 90s.
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"Once admit that the sole verifiable or fruitful object of knowledge is the particular set of changes that generate the object of study...and no intelligible question can be asked about what, by assumption, lies outside." John Dewey

"Be particular." Jill Conner Browne
existential_psych
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« Reply #102 on: June 24, 2012, 3:48:37 PM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

My SLAC has majors in accounting and finance.  There are ten full-time faculty in that department, and six of them have Ph.D.s.

I don't think that was the question, though; the poster seemed interested in PhD programs. Just out of curiosity, are the programs in accounting and finance relatively recent for your SLAC? At several places that I know of, business degrees at the undergrad level were added in the 80s and 90s.

I am well versed in Ph.D. programs; I was asking if SLACs spent the money on purchasing people that accredited hold Ph.D.s, given the intense scarcity of them on the market. Only 125 universities produce Ph.D.s in any of the 4 major business disciplines and there are 680 schools that are looking to obtain or maintain AACSB accreditation by hiring students from those universities.

As mentioned above, it looks as though you've got to have less utility for the marginal 60k between 60 and 120 k/y than you do for the difference between life in a SLAC than your next best option.

Are my numbers off on pay? Since SLACs tend not to be accredited by the AACSB I don't have a way of knowing how much they pay faculty.
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existential_psych
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« Reply #103 on: June 24, 2012, 4:00:20 PM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

My SLAC has majors in accounting and finance.  There are ten full-time faculty in that department, and six of them have Ph.D.s.

I don't think that was the question, though; the poster seemed interested in PhD programs. Just out of curiosity, are the programs in accounting and finance relatively recent for your SLAC? At several places that I know of, business degrees at the undergrad level were added in the 80s and 90s.

I am well versed in Ph.D. programs; I was asking if SLACs spent the money on purchasing people that accredited hold Ph.D.s, given the intense scarcity of them on the market. Only 125 universities produce Ph.D.s in any of the 4 major business disciplines and there are 680 schools that are looking to obtain or maintain AACSB accreditation by hiring students from those universities.

As mentioned above, it looks as though you've got to have less utility for the marginal 60k between 60 and 120 k/y than you do for the difference between life in a SLAC than your next best option.

Are my numbers off on pay? Since SLACs tend not to be accredited by the AACSB I don't have a way of knowing how much they pay faculty.
Ah, answered my own question, I found a search that brings up under-grad liberal-arts classification for schools, there are four that have more than 160k/ faculty member (a dead minimum, really)

unaccredited:
Bucknell University, Department of Management
Dallas, University of, College of Business

accredited:
Union Graduate College, School of Management
Willamette University, Atkinson Graduate School of Management


I appreciate the advice regarding small grad-program schools like dartmouth, i'm searching through those now. Thank you!
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aandsdean
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« Reply #104 on: June 24, 2012, 8:29:04 PM »

Do such schools have use/can they afford a a Business PH.D.?

My SLAC has majors in accounting and finance.  There are ten full-time faculty in that department, and six of them have Ph.D.s.

I don't think that was the question, though; the poster seemed interested in PhD programs. Just out of curiosity, are the programs in accounting and finance relatively recent for your SLAC? At several places that I know of, business degrees at the undergrad level were added in the 80s and 90s.

I am well versed in Ph.D. programs; I was asking if SLACs spent the money on purchasing people that accredited hold Ph.D.s, given the intense scarcity of them on the market. Only 125 universities produce Ph.D.s in any of the 4 major business disciplines and there are 680 schools that are looking to obtain or maintain AACSB accreditation by hiring students from those universities.

As mentioned above, it looks as though you've got to have less utility for the marginal 60k between 60 and 120 k/y than you do for the difference between life in a SLAC than your next best option.

Are my numbers off on pay? Since SLACs tend not to be accredited by the AACSB I don't have a way of knowing how much they pay faculty.
Ah, answered my own question, I found a search that brings up under-grad liberal-arts classification for schools, there are four that have more than 160k/ faculty member (a dead minimum, really)

unaccredited:
Bucknell University, Department of Management
Dallas, University of, College of Business

accredited:
Union Graduate College, School of Management
Willamette University, Atkinson Graduate School of Management


I appreciate the advice regarding small grad-program schools like dartmouth, i'm searching through those now. Thank you!

Millsaps College in Jackson, MS, has an AACSB-accredited business schhol as well.

By the way, let me just say one thing about the AACSB:  it's the most successful example of academic rent-seeking in history.  The runner-up is the ACS.
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