Michael Ekstrand

Job Application Materials

Published on 28 Oct 2016 and tagged with academia, career, and job search.

Inspired by Philip Guo's post, here are the application materials I submitted in the course of my two computer science faculty job searches.

I am posting these in the hopes that having more examples available helps some job applications. However, it's important to note that there is not a formula you can — or should — follow slavishly for these documents. When I took Preparing Future Faculty at UMN, our instructor encouraged us not to read other teaching statements before we wrote our own, so that our statements came from us. I don't know that you need to go that far, but your teaching and research statements should reflect you as a teacher and scholar.


Search 1: 2013–2014

I applied for my first round of jobs during the last year of my Ph.D. For this round, I applied broadly to schools at least offering M.S. degrees. At the conclusion of the search, I accepted an assistant professor position in the Computer Science department at Texas State University.

Here are my application materials:

Search 2: 2015

I went back on the job market in the fall of 2015, as it became apparent for several reasons (most acutely climate-health interactions) that central Texas would not be our permanent home.

This time around, I was far more selective in the positions I applied to; the search concluded when I accepted my present position at Boise State University.

My application materials:

For this search, I retained the central theme of my teaching statement, but entirely rewrote my research statement. My time at Texas State gave me space to re-think the framing of my dissertation work and to mature as a researcher, so this time around I had a far clearer and more compelling vision for my research program. I think this comes through most strongly in my new job talk, but also in increased confidence in where I positioned myself in the broader space of computer science (HCI of intelligent information systems).