Having achieved your Ph.D., and that is a long road to take, you will finally be eligible to apply for a position as a university professor. Generally, there are three kinds of teaching positions at this level that you can apply for: Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor. In addition to academic excellence, other than grades, scientific writing, presenting and networking form a very important basis for becoming a professor. Criteria for evaluating the qualifications for being the professor vary from country to country and from one university to another. Do you want to learn more? Visit Kevin S. Amidon Professor in Ames, Iowa.
Some universities use a scoring system as part of their criteria for evaluating one’s qualifications for each level of professorship. Scores are determined according to scientific achievements that usually range mainly from being published in peer-reviewed journal papers, conference proceedings, books and other kinds of publications, and awards, etc. Some outstanding students are offered the assistant professor position shortly after they graduate with their Ph.D. Others will be offered the same position after they spend two to three more years for postdoctoral research. Again, depending on universities and their system, to be qualified one must attain a certain level with endorsements from those who support you.
An Assistant Professor is the entry level into the four-year university environment. An Assistant Professor works under the guidance of, and reports to, a fully tenured professor or an Associate Professor. In this position, you are not required to write your own curriculum but will depend on your lead to provide one. At most, you will teach two classes, but you are required to continue research and meeting with students for guidance on classes. Promotions are hard to come-by and Assistant Professor usually teaches about seven years before being promoted to Associate Professor.
An Associate Professor plans his own curriculum but has a greater workload and longer hours to teach. He/she must participate in educational activities and/or committees. Although he/she reports to a tenured professor, there is more flexibility.
Full professors – considered a faculty member once accepted – plan, teach, confer with students and manage their time by assigning parts of their jobs to Assistant Professors. Being a tenured professor gives them certain rights to hold that position and not be fired without just cause. In addition, they are expected to be on staff for life unless some extenuating circumstance causes their dismissal – usually hard to prove a case against someone who is tenured. There are also part-time professors and non-tenured professor positions that are used to “fill in” for people who are on sabbatical or on some temporary leave. Those positions should also be considered to gain experience in teaching and gain entry into a particular university setting. Below are the requirements you’ll need to meet and some of which should be highlighted on your Curriculum Vitae (CV) when applying for these positions.
– You must have had excellent graduate test scores. These are the result of studying, becoming a subject matter expert on your topic, and providing an outcome that reflects your knowledge.
– You must have had scientific achievements indicating your interest in the work. This means initiating research projects or handling those assigned, making your results public by writing research papers and getting them published in influential scientific (or appropriate) journals and publications. They carry a lot of weight in making your work known and exposing yourself to others in the industry.