reshaping (my) graduate education

SLForsburg susan_forsburg at
Tue Jul 18 09:53:29 EST 1995

lperg at GAS.UUG.Arizona.EDU (Lesley A Perg) wrote:
> [snip]
>I think that you were given bad / outdated advice.  With scores of
>applicants to chose from (~115 in this case), there are going to be >many promising researchers, so departments can afford to gamble on 
> someone who
>looks to be a good researcher *and* a good teacher.  Besides, anything
>that is relevant and distinguishes the applicant, such as a teaching
>statement, is definitely good to include. 
>(Note: the examples are from the Geosciences Department at the University 
>of Arizona, a Research One University.  Although it is not a Bio 
>department, I think it is a good illustration of the changing attitudes 
>at research universities.  I am obviously a geologist, but lurk on 
>b.w-i-b because there is no sci.geo.women.  Besides, I enjoy reading up 
>on biology as an 'outside interest.')

(welcome!  Women in bio is a Big Tent, especially for a Sayers fan)

I think we may see some difference here between fields.  While I agree
 that there is NEVER a disadvantage to including everything on a cv,
including teaching, I also have interacted with enough searches through 
colleagues or my own experience on both sides of the line to be aware 
that in the bio sciences, if  they are interested in teaching, 
they will tell you so but it is not the major factor.  If you are applying to a large undergrad university ,it is obvious they want you to
 teach. BUT they also want you to maintain that vigorous research 
program, as they all want those overhead dollars.  Thus, you can't get 
into that environment if you dont want to do research (the question of 
the original post) and moreover, if they do not perceive your work 
as first rate and fundable, they will not be interested in anything else
no matter how many teaching awards you might have won.  After all, these
 days they have upwards of 300-400 applicants to choose from and the
success rate for first time RO1s at the NIH is....about 15%?  They are making a big investment in startup funds and they want it to be
 returned.  It never hurts to be outstanding at both research and 
teaching, but you won't get anywhere in the university environment 
without the research.

S L Forsburg                             
susan_forsburg at        
 "I don't speak for the Institute,         
 and the Institute  doesnt speak for me."

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