In our newest “how can we help you?” thread, Tom asks:
I’ve come across a job ad for a tenure-tack position at the rank of assistant professor that only asks for a cover letter, CV, and letters of reference. The job is teaching-focused. What gives? How can I stand out as a candidate if they don’t see a writing sample or even a teaching portfolio from me? Would it be a bad idea to send additional documents anyway?
Good questions. Another reader submitted the following reply:
[Y]ou need to customize the daylights out of that cover letter. I would guess they aren’t asking for anything else because they are concerned most about “fit” and want to filter for this first. They may ask for more materials after zoom interviews. Don’t send extra materials until asked (unless you have an inside contact who knows for SURE this is OK). At best nobody will look at them (out of fairness to other applicants), at worst this makes you look like you are desperate or like you didn’t read the ad.
I agree with this commenter that it would be a bad idea to send additional documents. If the committee asked for only three items, it’s because (for one reason or another) those are the only things they want at the initial stage. I suspect that they would probably frown on candidates who don’t follow directions, as search committees are supposed to consider all applicants equally on the basis of materials requested in the job ad. As for why they only asked for those three items, I have no idea–but again I agree with the commenter: the OP should customize the letter as much as they can to highlight their pedagogy and teaching experience, and maybe also briefly discuss their student evals, etc.
But these are just my thoughts. What do you all think?
Originally appeared on The Philosophers’ Cocoon Read More