Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Jobs - Update to Parts 4 and 5

Lots of blog-world action related to both tt Uni and CC jobs that deserves collecting in one place.

I'll put mention of Unbalanced Reaction's posting of part 1 of a series about experience with a 1-year Visiting Assistant Professor (VAP), not to mention using it to leverage a successful job hunt for a permanent t-t job, up here above the fold. I'm looking forward to the rest, and will add the links here when they appear. One thing I am curious about is which college category this new job falls into, to help see the relevance of the VAP as a teaching post-doc. I'm guessing it is a regional comprehensive or smaller 4-year school, possibly one that doesn't offer an MS degree in UR's science field.

I'll also be looking to UR's discussion of POGIL.

A few articles from IHE, with comments, will be linked below the fold.

I'll start with this one, about taking a one-year position because you don't have a job when May rolls around.

My observation is that there is a big difference between temp teaching as an adjunct and working full time in a one-year not-necessarily-renewable faculty position. The latter should come with a living wage and benefits and an opportunity to develop the teaching portfolio you need for some kinds of jobs. That is how it worked out for Unbalanced Reaction. Given the current state of the economy, there may even be some of these that might be potentially tenurable if the money is still there in a year or three.

There are also lots of links to resources that would be useful if you want to bail out of academia.

An article offering warnings about working as an adjunct should be must reading for anyone entering grad school ... along with the first few parts of my jobs series, if I should say so myself.

It is not quite the same as working as a Visiting Asst Professor, but it can also help with that teaching portfolio if you are realistic about your goals and the chances of reaching them.

I highly recommend one about Seven things to do this summer before starting a new job in the fall. A few of these suggestions even apply to us old timers.

My version of "paperwork" is all of the things that got deferred as the year wound down. My version of "set up your office" is to CLEAN mine. It currently makes a photo from 2 years ago look tame by comparison.

Finally, this article about summer teaching had some good advice.

I teach one small class in the summer, more for the fun than the money. (The college probably thinks the same thing, since their "profit" isn't very high for this class in the summer.) I get to do something completely different, interact with some great students from every walk of life at the college, yet have a reason to do to campus every day and do some of those catch-up tasks that just don't make it past triage during the school year. The comments in his "summertime, and the teaching is easy" section definitely apply to me. I'll be getting ready for fall soon enough.

But I worry about the burn out of some of our new faculty, who are teaching a very heavy load in the summer to help make ends meet or pay off student loans, whatever. It won't help their teaching evaluations in the regular year if they use up so much energy in the summer.


Unbalanced Reaction said...

Great list of links! I'm looking forward to going through them; tomorrow I'm definitely going to look carefully at the list of 7 things to do before starting a new job in the fall.

And great guess! My VAP was at a four-year (BS/BA only) liberal arts college as is my new position.

Doctor Pion said...

Consider it an educated guess, based on the reality that the experience pattern you describe works for a LAC but much less so for 4-year plus MS university that often has unrealistic fantasies about joining the ranks of AAU R1 schools.

Definitely pay attention to those 7 suggestions. In your case I would add an inquiry about ways in which students at your new home are similar or different from those at your VAP college.