Do you know what is going on in the graduate departments these days? Our little job got over 400 applications. We expected this. But we didn't expect the large number of applications from people who are ABD. Why would anyone without a degree (or even a defense date) go on the market? Well, that's not the question I want an answer to. The issue isn't really about ABD applicants. The question concerns ABD applicants who are manifestly unready for the job market. Who is advising these students? Who allows a student with only half a dissertation and no defense date in sight to go on the market?To be honest, I know of many departments which exercise almost no oversight. And I'm sure that this is bad for the job-seekers. Does anyone know of any departments which do a good job of coordinating the efforts of the job-seekers?
Given [the nature of our ad], there were several instances in which we received applications from several students from the same department. The undercooked ABDs make the department they come from look bad, and this means that they make the other applicants, even the defended ones, from that school look bad. Shouldn't there be some effort to coordinate who is applying to where? I know that back in the Dark Ages departments tended to be brutal when it came to who was applying where. We were told where we may and may not apply. I don't think that was a good practice. But surely some oversight is required. It seems that many departments are exerting no control over these matters anymore. So, I guess the real question I want to ask you is what practices are in place in graduate departments these days for coordinating job seeking efforts?
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Another Note from a Search Committee Member
I received the following earlier today from a friend who teaches as a decent liberal arts college that is conducting a search this year. It's a bit of a rant, but I'm curious to know the answer to the "real question" that is asked.