How to Land That First Job (And How Not To)

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Member department chairs from the Council of Graduate Departments of Psychology (COGDOP), who also happen to be child development researchers, will advise up and coming SRCD scholars about the daunting process of academic job-seeking. Although panelists’ administrative experiences draw from their roles in academic departments of psychology, their experiences generalize to the academy broadly.

In this Q&A panel format, chairs representing institutions of various sizes (see Table 1) will answer questions about the search process and give advice based on several decades of combined experience negotiating research start-up packages and making jobs offers. The panel symposium should be of great interest to graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and seasoned professionals considering re-entering the academic job market.

During Part 1 of the session, panelists will speak 4 minutes each to describe their institutional contexts, their experiences in hiring, and to share short stories about candidates they found especially impressive. Part 1 of the session will conclude with a brief period of broad Q&A. In Part 2 of the session, we will break into more focused Q&A groups based on the special interests of “larger” and “smaller” institutions. At the conclusion of Part 2, groups will report out to one another about particularly relevant topics that arose during small group discussions.

At the conclusion of the session, attendees will have a better understanding of the factors department chairs take into consideration when offering jobs and start-up packages to new hires.


Baltimore, MD

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