Pub. Date:
American Psychological Association
Becoming a Psychology Professor: Your Guide to Landing the Right Academic Job

Becoming a Psychology Professor: Your Guide to Landing the Right Academic Job

by Guy A Boysen PhDGuy A Boysen PhD


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Teaching psychology is a noble and rewarding endeavor, but finding the right position at the right college can be a daunting task. This book is designed to guide you through this complicated process by helping you find the job that matches your long‑term goals—whether you want to focus on research, teaching, or both—and to become a strong, competitive candidate in today’s challenging academic job market.
Author Guy Boysen begins by surveying the wide array of programs and institutions aspiring faculty should consider, including doctoral and master’s programs at public and private universities, community colleges, and baccalaureate colleges. He then reviews the ideal skills, experience, and professional connections that students should accumulate during graduate school. Readers will learn strategies for writing CVs, cover letters, and other application materials; securing effective letters of recommendation; preparing for phone, video, and on‑campus interviews; and negotiating terms of employment after being offered a job.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781433830600
Publisher: American Psychological Association
Publication date: 08/13/2019
Pages: 145
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.20(d)

About the Author

Guy A. Boysen, PhD, is a Professor of Psychology at McKendree University. He received his bachelor’s degree from Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota and his PhD from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. His scholarship emphasizes the teaching of psychology, professional development of teachers, and stigma toward mental illness. He previously coauthored a book on model teaching characteristics entitled An Evidence-based Guide to College and University Teaching. Dr. Boysen’s scholarship has led to Consulting Editor appointments at the journals Teaching of Psychology and Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Psychology. Guy Boysen lives in O'Fallon, Illinois. Visit and follow @GuyBoysen.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Welcome to the Profession! 3

Why This Book is Necessary 4

Types of Faculty Positions 5

The Job Market 8

Your Guide to Success in the Job Market 9

Conclusion 10

1 The Varieties of Academic Experiences: Types of Institutions 11

Doctoral Universities 12

Master's Universities 14

Baccalaureate Colleges 16

Community Colleges 17

Variations on Themes 19

Conclusion 20

2 The Fundamental Research and Teaching Experiences Needed to Be a Psychology Professor 21

Research 22

Teaching 28

Conclusion 31

3 Professional Service, Engagement, and Connections 33

Professional Service and Engagement 34

Matching Professional Service and Engagement to Your Desired Job 36

Face-to-Face Connections 37

Online Connections 39

Matching Professional Connections to Your Desired Job 41

Conclusion 42

4 Searching for and Selecting Open Positions 43

When to Stan the Job-Search Process 44

Determining Your Search Parameters 45

Finding Job Advertisements 48

Interpreting the Written and Unwritten Messages in Job Advertisements 49

Methods for Investigating Jobs 55

It's All About Fit 57

5 Writing a Curriculum Vitae 59

Typical CV Content 60

Organizational Strategies 64

How Search Committees at Different Institutions Read CVs 64

The CV as a 30-Second Advertisement About You 67

6 Application Materials and the Application Process 69

The Cover Letter: An Abstract of Your Fit With the Position 70

The Teaching Statement as an Expression of Model Teaching 75

The Research Statement as a Sign of Past Productivity and Future Potential 77

Other Application Materials and What They Mean 79

Securing Meaningful Letters of Recommendation 83

Rules for Communicating (or Not) With the College and the Search Committee 85

Conclusion 86

7 Interviewing 87

Phone and Video Interviews 88

The On-Campus Interview 92

On-Campus Interview Questions You Should Be Prepared to Answer 102

Questions to Ask During the On-Campus Interview 105

8 Job Offers and Negotiations 109

The Job Offer Timeline 110

Final Questions to Ask Yourself Before Accepting an Offer 111

Negotiating: Yes, You Really Have to Do It 112

Dealing With Declined Offers and Rejections 115

Epilogue 119

It's All About Fit 120

Start Early 121

The Best Job in the World 122

Appendix: Job Search Timeline 123

References 127

Index 137

About the Author 145

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