Applying for an academic job is a little different from other jobs, especially in the amount of documentation some schools require. Academic CV’s are famously long. But then there are documents such as:

  • research statement (2-6 pages)
  • teaching statement
  • diversity statement

Do not underestimate the work. As one resource states: “Give yourself plenty of time (approximately three months) to craft your research statement”.

Here I wish to compile some resources I found useful:

Research statement:

First: read this article, as it lays out the point of it, and why it is useful. The point that really convinced me is that if you get invited to an interview, a large part of the interview will be on where you wish to go as an academic. The research statement is basically your preparation for this talk. Do it well. For this is the final hurdle, where, to quote the article: it gives the hiring committee “relief from anxiety”.

Some key points:

  • it helps you develop as a scientist, makes your thoughts and plans clear to yourself.
  • It helps you communicate your research vision.
  • You need to show you are interested in something important. Something others will care about.
  • Be specific. Not necessarily detailed, but clear about exactly what you want to do. You will not cure cancer, but you may contribute to a small, specific part.
  • Focus on the major themes. Make it easy to follow and understand. It should not only be accessible to specialists.
  • Show you are able to write well. Written communication is an important tool of the trade. Demonstrate your ability.
  • Make it realistic. If you at all can, include some data (preliminary if you have it), this shows the plan is viable, and not just a lofty dream, or someone else’s idea.
  • Show your independence from your advisors, show you can manage on your own.
  • … and there is much more. Really worth the read!

A good checklist:


more good advice:

A lot of samples:

Share This