Applying for Positions
When applying for open positions, the most common application materials you'll be asked to submit are a resume or CV and a cover letter. Depending on the career area additional components may be requested including a sample of your work, copy of your transcripts, or other certifications as required. For academic job positions you likely will also be requested to provide a teaching statement, research statement, diversity statement and letters of recommendation.
For each job posting you will want to tailor your materials to address the required and preferred qualifications using the terminology in the job posting.
Top tips for a tailored resume:
- Make sure you clearly demonstrate how you meet the required qualifications in your resume
- Use the terminology and jargon from the job posting in your resume
- Use quantifiable elements when possible
- Include accomplishments and products created or improved within position description bullet points
Top tips for the cover letter:
- Make it clear what position you are applying for and why you are interested in the position
- Use the body of the cover letter to further explain what skills, experiences, and capabilities you are bringing to the role and how these elements will further the mission and vision of the organization/team/role
For templates and examples of effective job materials see the resources below.
This guide provides templates and examples for CVs, resumes, cover letters, and additional job materials for PhDs seeking both academic employment and careers beyond the tenure track.
Within the "Apply" section of each job family there are analyzed sample job descriptions and examples of a tailored resume and cover letter for a specific job posting. There are also general resources for tips and strategies for evaluating job offers, writing cover letters, writing a resume, and more.
Crafting a great cover letter can set your application apart and help you get your foot in the door. But where to start? This collection from The Muse as tips, templates, and examples to get you going—from great opening lines to real samples that actually worked.
The KU Center for Teaching Excellence has a workshop series dedicated to academic job search prep. Learn more here or reach out to Kaila Colyott at the CTE for more information.
Reach out to the Assistant Director for Graduate Writing and Support for a coaching appointment to receive feedback on your cover letter, or academic job materials.