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442 posts tagged with academia.
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Need a job, almost any job will do

As I near my 3rd and final year of my postdoc grant, it has become time to fish or cut bait. But I'm horrible about making decisions, but yet, don't have time to do it all. Can you help me sort out my future employment plans? Part of this may involve simply assuring me that leaving academia is the way to go. Or not. [more inside]
posted by katers890 on Apr 1, 2014 - 10 answers

Family Medical Leave for Graduate Students

Does Family Medical Leave cover graduate students on .50 FTE? If so, does it still allow for tuition reimbursement or would I be on the hook for that? [more inside]
posted by mrfuga0 on Mar 24, 2014 - 8 answers

A minor question about transgender nomenclature and etiquette.

A former distant colleague of mine is a trans woman. I'm pretty clear on the importance of not misgendering people, but I'm running into one or two slightly awkward practical issues in making sure I don't screw that up. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 21, 2014 - 21 answers

Am I making the right decision? (Plus bonus negotiation questions)

I am an academic in Australia, in a social sciences/humanities field that I have mentioned before but would rather not repeat here for googleability reasons. I am currently employed until the middle of this year. I have a job offer in another city that I think I'm going to accept. I'm worried it might be the wrong decision. [more inside]
posted by lollusc on Mar 18, 2014 - 20 answers

PhD-level conservation careers for maximum real-world impact

I'm in a PhD program pursuing a degree in conservation biology. When I finish (and possibly after completing a postdoc or two) I'd like to end up in a job where I can maximize my real-world conservation impact. I'd like to hear some suggestions on how I can do that; lots more detail to be found inside, as well as my reasoning on the subject so far. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on Mar 18, 2014 - 5 answers

A parachute for jumping off the Ivory Tower

Another humanities-grad-student-meets-real-life question. Finishing a linguistics Ph.D., have a classics M.A.; my academic job search is drawing a blank, so I'm looking further afield. What are some specific skills I could acquire that would make me more employable, and how do I go about acquiring them? Complications: I'll need visa sponsorship for any kind of employment, and time is a factor. [more inside]
posted by zeri on Mar 17, 2014 - 17 answers

Have I been plagiarized? If so, what do I do?

I wrote a lengthy scholarly article last year, put a preprint of it on my university's institutional repository, and thought no more about it. In January this year, a British journalist published a piece of popular military history with a major British trade press that appears to contain about 6 pages of very, very close summary and paraphrase of my article. What to do? [more inside]
posted by Sonny Jim on Mar 4, 2014 - 11 answers

Tenure and promotion letters for college faculty

Academics, what is your institution's policy about tenure and promotion letters? Specifically, once the decision to award or deny tenure is made, does a candidate standardly get a letter detailing the committee's reasons? What is the letter like and who reviews it? Looking also for pointers to faculty handbooks where the letter process is described, and links to policies/recommendations from professional associations like AAUP or MLA on this. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 26, 2014 - 12 answers

How can I come to terms with mistakes I made in my 20s?

I am in my late 20s, and I have increasingly found myself preoccupied with regret about how I have squandered my 20s. [more inside]
posted by ClaireBear on Feb 25, 2014 - 35 answers

Effective learning: looking for the best academic skills and techniques

What are some effective academic skills, techniques, and tools for effective learning and succeeding academically? — Looking for uncommon, highly effective techniques that aren't the oft-repeated ones ("don't procrastinate!") but more like "use spaced repetition software to review the major concepts all throughout the semester". — I'll share some of my own. [more inside]
posted by markbao on Feb 20, 2014 - 22 answers

[academic/reading-geek filter] how to take notes on books within books?

My apologies for this very convoluted question...tl;dr: I guess I'm asking how people deal with taking notes from books, not just on the book's content and structure etc, but mapping bodies of literatures mentioned in those books. I would love to hear if you have a system that works for you. More after the jump. [more inside]
posted by starcrust on Feb 19, 2014 - 10 answers

CS academia vs. industry, with snowflakes

I'm graduating this spring with an undergrad degree in computer science, and I'm lucky enough to have two great postgrad opportunities on the table. But how to choose between a safe and enjoyable industry job vs. attempting the grad school grind to (maybe hopefully) do what I love? [more inside]
posted by serelliya on Feb 15, 2014 - 10 answers

European (para-)academic job search

I'm finishing a Ph.D. in linguistics and am considering looking for a job in Europe, either in the academy or in a related sector such as education, language instruction, academic publishing, etc. What other fields should I be thinking about? And where are such jobs advertised? [more inside]
posted by zeri on Feb 13, 2014 - 4 answers

What do you (temporarily) do with an MA in History?

I'm currently enrolled in a History Ph.D. program and will be eligible to leave with an MA in a couple of months. I've applied to finish my doctorate elsewhere, but, given some recent developments in my department, have decided that I would really rather leave after my MA regardless of whether I get in elsewhere this cycle. Help me brainstorm options. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 8, 2014 - 6 answers

Should I send this letter to a search chair at a SLAC?

I am considering rescinding my application for employment at a SLAC - I am fairly certain they have invited candidates to interview since my initial follow-ups, but have been wholly unresponsive to my questions. The goal of this letter is to change their behavior so that they are not rude during future job searches. I think I would have liked this job, but do not want employment there if the search process is indicative of department dynamics. Letter enclosed. If you think I ought to send it, any suggestions for revision are welcome. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 31, 2014 - 72 answers

The researcher is the subject.

Social science research: How does researching a subject that affects you very personally impact your professional reputation and long-term employment prospects? [more inside]
posted by tippy on Jan 25, 2014 - 9 answers

What should I ask at an academic job interview?

I am starting a two day academic job interview tomorrow. What questions should I ask? Bonus question: Do I want this job? [more inside]
posted by pseudonick on Jan 15, 2014 - 10 answers

Midlife crisis: Suggestions for a career path out of media?

I'm nearly 40 years old and by some measures, successful. I graduated from a top university and have been employed by major companies for nearly 20 years of my professional life. I've grown increasingly dissatisfied with my chosen career though, and I was hoping some of the wise minds here could give me some advice. Details follow. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 13, 2014 - 6 answers

Rethinking being a PhD candidate: whether, when, how, why, & what next?

I am a doctoral candidate and have become increasingly convinced that I no longer want an academic job, and possibly not a PhD either. When/how do I tell my supervisor? (Particulars inside, and apologies in advance about the length.) [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 10, 2014 - 15 answers

Moving beyond Sokal?

I am interested in articles that try to analyze and explain the conflict between the hard and soft sciences. In my casual web surfing I have come across e.g. highly-trained scientists who yet express a deep disdain for fields as open-ended and far-ranging as sociology, feminism, queer theory, postmodernism, and so on, sometimes even economics, psychology. I find such attitudes hard to comprehend, and even disturbing since my educational background is in the applied sciences. Which are the important works that have been done to better understand this ongoing social/intellectual gap, and that are presented in a readable manner for a non-expert?
posted by polymodus on Jan 4, 2014 - 10 answers

Exiting Academia

I just finished up my third semester of a PhD program in information studies. There are parts I like, but as I get deeper into it I'm beginning to realize that those aren't in the majority to the parts I dislike. I have a masters in Library and Information Science and have been keeping an eye on job openings and it seems like there are a number that I would be a great fit for. I'm remembering how much I liked the job when I was in it, and I'd like to exit academia before sinking too much time into it. However, my GAship is providing a steady salary and health benefits. How do I do this in a way that works out well for both me and my adviser? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jan 2, 2014 - 7 answers

High income options for life science PhDs

I am graduating within the next year. I will have my PhD in Pharmacology - 4 first author publications, 1 patent. Several presentations at national conferences in my field. I also have an MS in Biochemistry and a BS in Math. 1 year of experience working as a research specialist in academia. Various extra curricular activities that demonstrate leadership. I want to make 100k a year or more. I want to do this reasonably quickly (within the next 4 years). I do not want to go back to any schooling of any type. What options are available for me?
posted by sickinthehead on Dec 31, 2013 - 11 answers

Low-cost tablets for academics

I would like a low-cost tablet for academic work. Mainly reading and annotating PDFs and scientific papers, note-taking, and brainstorming/checklist-type activities. I have a Nook and barely use it because it's terrible with PDFs and can't do graphics and figures at all, even in the ePub format. I don't know anything about tablets--I don't even own a smartphone--so I have no idea where to start looking, what's appropriate, or what's a reasonable budget to expect. [more inside]
posted by schroedinger on Dec 30, 2013 - 31 answers

Transitioning from academia back to a former job

I'm coming to think that, while I don't hate academia, I'm beginning to like it less and less and have apprehensions about continuing through to my dissertation. I'm in my second year of the PhD program, and have a masters with practical application in the field that I was working in before deciding to continue on to my PhD. The place where I was working, a public library, is now hiring for a position similar to the one that I was in before I left. Typically my master's degree would command a higher salary, and I think I would probably need a little bit more than what they're offering to live comfortably and start paying down my extant debt accrued during my masters (I'm not taking on any new loans, thankfully). I left on great terms, and feel like a really strong candidate for the job with the skills I've gained in the interim, but would only be able to take it with slightly higher salary than they offer now. I loved this job, and it's looking more and more appealing compared to my current experience in academia. What steps should I take to contact the HR department of the library system to a) let them know that I'm interested and suss out how interested they might be in me, and b) talk about flexibility in salary? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Dec 28, 2013 - 2 answers

Is it best to continue my career in academia, or take a different path?

I am a 25 year old woman, and handing in my thesis tonight for a Master’s in English. I am at a crossroads in my life, and it’s making me very confused. My original plan was to go on to complete a Ph. D and become a college professor of English, while working as an adjunct instructor to gain teaching experience. But with the expense of living being what it is, as well as the student debt I’m in, I’m not sure if it’s worth it. Not only will a Doctoral program take me to greater debt, but working as an adjunct wont pay very well at all, and doesn’t come with benefits. I would need to take a handful of other part-time jobs to supplement the adjunct salary, just to pay the bills. [more inside]
posted by summertimesadness1988 on Dec 13, 2013 - 28 answers

From "Did you play football in highschool?" to "Are you up for tenure?"

AcademicClothesFilter: MetaFilter, help me (20ish dude) find a store that sells awesome tweed or professorial-like sportscoats/jackets! I am a beginning academic who hates suits, but soon I will start to teach and go to conferences and will need to "look the part." Thus, I need to update my wardrobe with something thematically between "formal" and "wannabe hipster causal." The hitch is: I am sort-of built like a linebacker, with a very broad chest and very wide shoulders but with a not-quite-commensurately-large bottom torso, and thus sizing can often be an issue for me (i.e., getting more fabric "up top" in generic sizes ends up with billowing fabric down below). Is there any store that sells hot to trot professorial tweed that might fit someone with my body build? Or will I need to get a loose fit and then get it tailored? (Is that... what tailoring is?).
posted by Keter on Nov 28, 2013 - 14 answers

Turning unpublished report into conference paper - self-plagiarism?

I'm trying to turn my masters report into a conference paper. This mainly involves shortening it by many, many pages. Masters reports in my department are not published or even listed online or at the library. The only way anyone could ever read it or even know about it is to ask me or my advisor for a copy. Instead, the way I am sharing the work is to write a conference paper on the same subject. Do I need to cite my own unpublished report? [more inside]
posted by Gravel on Nov 25, 2013 - 9 answers

How soon can I get back in the classroom after giving birth?

How soon can I realistically expect to go back into the classroom after giving birth? [more inside]
posted by mrfuga0 on Nov 6, 2013 - 44 answers

Black turtlenecks, cigarettes, red wine, and Derrida

I'm defending my dissertation next week and the process has wrung all enthusiasm for academia right out of me. The whole enterprise has come to seem like nothing but an anxiety-ridden grind. In my small amount of free time before the defense and during the break I'm allowing myself afterwards, I'd like to read some novels that will delude me into thinking that being an intellectual is kind of, well, hot. Examples and extended description below. [more inside]
posted by pretentious illiterate on Oct 26, 2013 - 19 answers

I'm (no longer) hot for teacher, can I attend his class?

How bad of an idea it is to attend a university class given by a lecturer I've secretly dated? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 15, 2013 - 33 answers

Need help with a difficult professor

I'm a first-year masters student taking a course that is supposed to be the core curriculum of my discipline. My program is in systems ecology. I find myself increasingly frustrated with this professor and increasingly unable to hide it, and now he wants to "meet with me to talk about student-instructor dynamics". I need some help coming up with some strategies to deal with this professionally. Difficulty level: I'm a new graduate student, and he's the director of my program. The program is brand-new (just started spring semester of last year) and this is one of two core courses, both of which are taught by him. His course is so terrible that I'm considering transferring to another program within the university. Excruciating detail inside. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Oct 1, 2013 - 45 answers

Academics: Explain open-access publishing in your discipline!

I'd like to know more about SSRN, Arxiv, PLOS, and other open-access publishing platforms and how they work in your discipline. Do you publish in them? Do they keep you from publishing in other (more prestigious) journals later? Etc. [more inside]
posted by carolinaherrera on Oct 1, 2013 - 9 answers

Moving from academia to consulting

I recently left a tenure-track position(!) for geographic reasons (spouse's job). At this point I am not wedded to staying in the faculty track, and have been applying for admin positions as well as faculty ones. However, I recently saw an ad for an analyst job in a higher ed consulting firm in a topic area where I have experience and interest, and I am very seriously considering applying. I have some questions about how to format my resume and cover letter . [more inside]
posted by pamplemousse of love on Sep 27, 2013 - 8 answers

How can I get the most out of my first major academic conference?

I'm a second-year grad student in the humanities going to (and presenting at!) my first major academic conference in about a week. I already have business cards, a list of sessions I'm interested in, and a probably absurdly high amount of anxiety. Fellow academics of MeFi, what do you recommend to maximize my conference experience?
posted by naturalog on Sep 25, 2013 - 14 answers

Academia and travel/living abroad

I would like to become a professor but I'm a little worried about picking a spot in the U.S. to live for the rest of my life... [more inside]
posted by myitkyina on Sep 20, 2013 - 23 answers

What are the five most seminal books in whatever field you're interested

Imagine you're allowed to give a nobel prize for five of the most seminal books of the past 50-60 years in whatever field you're interested and/or invested in. What would they be? The Nobel is usually given out to applied research and application and theory is eschewed. In this case you can give it to theoretical works as well. [more inside]
posted by RapcityinBlue on Sep 6, 2013 - 9 answers

Reapplying for an academic job I didn't get, what to change?

I'm on the academic job market and last year applied for a faculty position at a liberal arts school. It was basically my dream job, and I honestly thought I was a great fit for the position, so I was disappointed when I didn't get an interview. This year they're advertising the same job again, and I'm planning to apply again. How do I know what to change in my application? Should I mention the fact that I applied last year and was rejected, and if so how? [more inside]
posted by zeri on Sep 5, 2013 - 21 answers

Have patience, young grasshopper. Also, revise your drafts.

I need someone to mentor me as I learn how to mentor. [more inside]
posted by pretentious illiterate on Sep 1, 2013 - 4 answers

We Can Dissertate If We Want To

How do you force yourself to work hard when you just don't care? I'm looking for practical tips/tricks, cognitive/behavioral strategies, and MacGyver-ish life kludges for pervasive procrastination. [more inside]
posted by therumsgone on Aug 26, 2013 - 11 answers

Free/Low Cost Therapists in Berkeley/Oakland?

A friend is in a bit of a tough spot right now and needs to talk to a therapist as soon as he possibly can. Money is a bit tight right now. I'm looking for all free/low cost therapy options in the Berkeley/Oakland area, who are familiar with depression and burnout.
posted by melodykramer on Aug 19, 2013 - 3 answers

How can I make my work experience relevant for a job in academia?

I am in need of some help... I've just completed an M.A. in Anthropology, I'm trying to pull together a CV for a job teaching as an adjunct professor or community college professor. I don't have professional teaching experience, even though I've got loads of experience teaching to my peers in graduate seminars. (I'm also not sure how to convey that, other than in a cover letter.) I've got some of my written work (Academia.edu), and one of my presentations on YouTube. I'm in the process of revising some other papers to put on Academia.edu... Hoping, I suppose, that displaying my work will make me a better candidate. Now, here's the question: How can I make my existing (non-teaching!) work experience relevant to applying for academic jobs? [more inside]
posted by ScarletLark on Aug 12, 2013 - 10 answers

How can I unbind my life?

I'm in a bind. Six years ago I made the mistake of entering grad school in a humanities field, in which pretty much the only career trajectory is to become an academic. I'm now pretty sure I wouldn't be happy in a standard academic job. However, I have few other marketable skills. There's the added complication that I'm a foreign student without a green card, so if I quit the program, or finish and fail to find a job, I'd have to leave the US and go back to my home country, which I don't want to do. I feel there must be possible courses of action which I'm not seeing, and would appreciate help finding them. [more inside]
posted by zeri on Jul 28, 2013 - 16 answers

Washington state labor lawyers

I'm looking for recommendations for labor lawyers in Washington state. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jul 28, 2013 - 1 answer

Switch from academia to counseling?

I've been working as a non-tenure-track professor in the humanities for the last few years. I'm considering a career shift, and I'm thinking counseling might be a good fit for me. I imagine myself having a private practice where I primarily provide therapy to women. I am hoping this kind of change might offer me more career options and personal fulfillment than what I’m doing now. Still, I'm cautious. I need your wisdom! [more inside]
posted by okaynow on Jun 30, 2013 - 6 answers

Book recommendations in the field of psychology?

Not looking for pop psychology, but for fundamental texts that are unmissable. Work covering specific topics/subtopics (e.g., "this is the best book about borderline personality disorder") is fine too. I'm not going to be able to pursue another graduate degree for a while, so I'd like to start background and introductory reading for pleasure now (but I'd eventually like to work in the field). I have university library privileges! I've seen this ask, but it's a few years old and answers were rather thin. Go!
posted by sevensnowflakes on Jun 23, 2013 - 13 answers

What do you know about being management in a union environment?

I may, in the future, have the opportunity to move to a management role in a union environment at a state university. Some state universities have professional unions and some have service employee unions. Do you have experience working or managing in an environment like this? How is it different from working in a non-union academic environment? If I were to make a move like this, how could I be the best manager for both union and non-union people possible?
posted by eleanna on Jun 22, 2013 - 11 answers

Yet another "Should I stay in grad school?" question...

...but this time there is a newborn baby! This fall I will begin my 5th year in an English PhD program. I have been ambivalent about staying in my program pretty much since the first year, but have always come down on the side of staying in, even though I long ago decided I don't want to even try to become an English professor. Three weeks ago my husband and I had a baby, and that is making me less confident I want to continue. I need some help sorting this out. [more inside]
posted by apricot on Jun 9, 2013 - 7 answers

How difficult is it for a US citizen to work in the UK/Europe?

What are the options for a skilled US citizen (advanced background in structural engineering) to get a work visa in the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, or Switzerland? [more inside]
posted by pianohands on Jun 6, 2013 - 5 answers

Take me to your ivory tower.

I like novels that take place in boarding schools (or in colleges that feel like boarding schools). I've been to Brakebills, Ault, Hampden, Devon, the Concent of Saunt Edhar (totally counts), the University of Missouri, Enfield Tennis Academy, and Hogwarts.* Where should I go next? [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee on Jun 5, 2013 - 75 answers

First World Problems: Academic edition

Academic sabbatical +/- having a baby: how does that work? What is the most "logical" time frame for either of these to occur? Is this a bad idea altogether? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jun 4, 2013 - 11 answers

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