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DON'T RAMBLE...and practice!

Justin Caouette

Though I cannot offer advice myself, Thomas Nadelhoffer has posted some advice regarding video conference interviews within the profession>

Here is the link http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2013/11/video-conferencing-and-job-interviews-revisited.html

Joanna Grover

Lie, lie, lie....and hope you don't get caught (especially if it's a position teaching ethics).

Anthony Carreras

Some things that immediately come to mind:

1. Keep your dissertation spiel as short and as punchy as you can manage.

2. When discussing courses you would teach, don't just say "I'd use this book and cover this, this, and this." In addition to that, say what you think the essence of the course is, and then explain how the way that you have constructed the course brings out that essence.

3. Do your research on all the departments (and their respective institutions) with which you will interview. Try to read stuff they have published.

4. Keep track of the questions you are asked at each interview, and make a list. (This really came in handy for me.)

5. Go back and read exactly what you wrote in your cover letter for the department with which you are interviewing. Make sure you can back up, in great detail, everything that you said in there that you were capable of doing. For instance, if you said you could teach Logic, then make sure you have a lot to say about how you would teach Logic.

6. Scotch.

Good luck!


Don't forget - you're not the only one with something on the line during the interview. Assure your interviewers that they've made a good choice in choosing you! Make them comfortable with the idea of having you as a colleague - it's not their job to make you comfortable, but it might very well be your job to make them comfortable.


Show interest in the work of your interviewers. They're looking for a colleague, not a grad student.


I strongly disagree with Anthony on the "try to read stuff they have published" line. That's greatly over-preparing, and I say that from experience. I had a bunch of on-campus visits last year, and my plan was to read one recent article from each person, so that I could competently talk about their research. I did it for my first visit, then basically had a nervous breakdown trying to teach two courses, prep for my visits, *and* read so many articles (easy in a department with 4-6 people, impossible when that number gets to 14 or even 25). Moreover, I stopped trying to read anything anyone had written, and I noticed that it *made zero difference* during the actual on-campus visits. If there's a lull in conversation, it's perfectly fine to say, "So, can you remind me what you work on?"

(Also, DO NOT even think about this for first round interviews!!! It's UTTERLY useless! You won't have any chance to talk about individual people other than yourself. That would be very, very bad advice, and a complete waste of your time.)

Anthony Carreras

Rachel is right, and I should have been more cautious at least in how I worded that advice. But *if you have the time*, I think it may still be worth doing. It even may be of use at the level of the first round if you are interviewing in person at the APA, since you may talk to your interviewers at the Smoker.


Honestly, I think it doesn't help at all, even at the on-campus stage (and it really, really doesn't help one iota at the first round stage). Take that time and write another paper (or two).

Jason Brennan

For first-round interviews, be prepared to discuss at great length anything on your CV. The committee might decide they're most interested in something you presented or wrote 4 years ago. You need to be prepared to talk about it for an hour.

That's happened to me a few times, both with committees that eventually flew me out and those that did not. I once had to spend an hour discussing my term paper for a philosophy of physics class with a committee.

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