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How to Write Assistant Professor Resume: Insider Tips

On this article, we'll give you insider tips on how to write a great assistant professor resume.

How to Write Assistant Professor Resume: Insider Tips
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Brenna Goyette
6 min read

The job market is tough. Competition is high, and employers are more discerning than ever before. If you have a PhD in your field, then you might be looking for a tenure-track assistant professor position. You might not know where to start with writing an assistant professor resume, so we’ve compiled the following list of insider tips to help you write a strong application. From your education to your teaching experience and publications, here are some things you should include on your resume as well as some things that you should avoid including on it.

What is a Assistant Professor?

A university assistant professor is an academic title for a person who has been granted tenure by the institution, typically after spending about 6 years on the tenure track. Typically they are at the bottom of the academic hierarchy in most colleges and universities.

Select the Right Format for your Assistant Professor Resume

The first thing you should do when writing your assistant professor resume is to select the right format.

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There are two main types of formats: chronological and functional. A chronological resume lists your employment history in reverse chronological order, starting with the most recent experience and working back. A functional resume lists skills and qualifications in a variety of different categories that best represent your professional experience. You can then use these categories to highlight whichever skills or qualifications best suit the job you’re applying for.

Assistant Professor Resume Objective or Resume Summary

Your resume summary is what you use to grab the attention of a hiring manager or search committee. In the first few words, you need to let them know what your expertise is and what you can do for them.

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For example, if you have a PhD in psychology, then your objective might be "seeking a tenure-track assistant professor position in experimental social psychology."

If you have a PhD in computer science, your objective might be "seeking a tenure-track assistant professor position in computer science."

Assistant Professor Job Description for a Resume

For an assistant professor, you will need to include your education, teaching experience, and publications. Education should be listed in reverse chronological order starting with the most recent degree. List your school’s name, location, time period of graduation, and other degrees received.

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You should have a minimum of three years of teaching experience in your field. If you do not have three years of teaching experience, include other related professional experience. Tenure-track assistant professors are often hired on the basis of their research record so list any relevant publications in reverse chronological list starting with the most recent.

Any awards or grants that you have won should be included as well as any other published materials that are related to your work. You can also include conference presentations if they are relevant to your field.

Add your Education as Assistant Professor

Education is a key point on any resume, but it’s especially important on an assistant professor resume. Add the following information to your resume:

  • Your degree, school, date of graduation
  • The degree you are currently seeking
  • Letters of Recommendation from your professors

List your Skills as Assistant Professor

  • Be specific with your teaching skills. Make sure you highlight any areas of expertise that are specific to the position you’re applying for.
  • Be mindful of formatting with your publications. It’s important that all the work you include on your resume is concise and easy to read.
  • Keep it simple with your contact information. Include only the most necessary contact information on your resume, including your email address, phone number, and LinkedIn or professional website if applicable.

Include a Cover Letter for your Assistant Professor Resume

Your cover letter is an important component of your application. It should be concise, but it should also provide a sense of who you are and what your research is about.

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Here are some pointers for writing a successful cover letter:

  • Reference the position in your cover letter
  • Explain why you are interested in this particular position
  • Detail any relevant coursework, teaching experience, or other related work experience
  • Highlight any innovative research methods or ideas
  • Include samples of published articles or conference presentations

The most important thing to remember about writing a cover letter for an assistant professor resume is that it should be tailored to the employer. You want to reference their publication list, teaching expectations, and departmental goals to personalize your candidacy for them.

Tips for Job Interviews

Start by doing some research on the school you are applying to

There are many ways that you can ace your interview, but one of the most important parts is to do some research on the school before you go in for your interview. This seems like common sense, but it’s easy to overlook this step. You will want to know basic information about the school, such as its location or projected enrollment for next year.

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You should also find out who your potential boss will be and what he or she does at the school. Beyond that, you should research how their PhD program works--is it more industry-focused or theoretical? What is their funding situation?

Know what questions they might ask

You should also know what types of questions they might ask during an interview with you. Some schools may have a set list of questions that they use for all candidates, while others may have a list of possible questions that change depending on each candidate. Knowing this beforehand can help you prepare ahead of time so that when they ask these questions, you don't have to scramble to remember what you were planning on saying.

Know why they are interviewing candidates from your field specifically

Some schools may be interviewing candidates from your field because there are not enough professors in that area yet (either because of retirement or staff cutbacks). Other schools might be looking for new faculty members in order to offer more courses in that subject area; still other schools might really only be looking for people

Key Takeaways

  • Include a brief description of your PhD and research areas.
  • List the classes you have taught, where you've taught them, and for how long.
  • Include any honors or awards you have received.
  • Mention any significant conferences or seminars at which you've given presentations.
  • List the papers, articles, and books for which you are an author or coauthor.
  • List any other notable accomplishments that might help to distinguish your application from others.