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Valuing and evaluating teaching in the mathematics faculty hiring process. (English)
Notices Am. Math. Soc. 54, No. 10, 1309-1315 (2007).
Introduction: A number of articles have been published online and in the ‘Notices’ offering advice for graduate students and others seeking faculty positions in mathematics departments. Although the advice shared in these articles is undoubtedly useful, much of it is based on the authors’ anecdotal experiences applying for jobs or hiring new faculty members. Motivated by my interest in preparing graduate students to communicate clearly about their teaching effectiveness while on the job market, I decided to pursue some more systematic research into the academic hiring process in mathematics. To that end, I conducted a survey of hiring committees during the summer of 2006. The survey was designed to determine (a) how these search committees valued the teaching effectiveness of applicants, especially in comparison with the applicants’ potential for research, and (b) how the committees evaluated the teaching effectiveness of applicants in initial application materials, especially teaching statements, and in later interviews and other interactions. The survey replicated and extended the work of Meizlish and Kaplan, who surveyed faculty hiring committees in six other disciplines and encouraged me to build on their work by conducting a similar survey in mathematics. Results of the {\it D. Meizlish} and {\it M. Kaplan} survey are available in [“Valuing and evaluating teaching in academic hiring: a multidisciplinary, cross-institutional study", J. Higher Educ. 79, No. 5, 489‒512 (2008) and with {\it C. O’Neal} and {\it M. Wright}, “A research-based rubric for developing statements of teaching philosophy", in: D. R. Robertson (ed.) and L. B. Nilson (ed.), To improve the academy: resources for faculty instructional and organizational developers, Vol. 26, 242‒262 (2008)].
Classification: B40
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