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Advice for an early career researcher (job applications ...)

(6 Posts)
JobSeekingWitterer Mon 21-Mar-16 13:57:04

Hello. Name changed for reasons of paranoia, but a regular. I'd appreciate advice from the MN Academic Hive-Mind.

I've always been told that, at the start of your career, your referees would usually include your PhD supervisor and your external examiner, as they are the people who know your work best. Most job applications also want your current employer.

I'm at the end of my first postdoc and am applying for lots of jobs, but I'm unsure now who I should ask. All of the above people will write for me, but should I be asking other people too? Is a youngish colleague (who is in the department I'm applying to, and who has read my recent work and knows my teaching well) worth asking, instead of (say) my PhD supervisor, who is more senior, and has seen some of my recent research, but who doesn't know what I am like as a colleague?

Any other tips you think I may have failed to pick up, based on irritating errors your own ECRs have made, would be gladly welcomed.

disquit2 Mon 21-Mar-16 15:54:12

I wouldn't ask a relatively junior current colleague to write instead of your PhD supervisor but as well as. Having a colleague who knows your current work and can discuss how you have progressed since your PhD is important, but not naming your PhD supervisor would be unusual.

If you have to drop one, I would go with PhD supervisor plus two current colleagues (i.e. drop the external examiner, unless they have been keeping up with your recent work).

JobSeekingWitterer Mon 21-Mar-16 16:25:08

Thanks, disquit, that is really useful and helpful.

I had wanted to keep External, partly because he has read my recent work, and partly because he is the only one of them who works one particular sub-field, and that sub-field is amongst those mentioned in the job advert, so I'd hoped he'd be a good fit in that sense.

BadgerCrossing Mon 21-Mar-16 17:32:27

Why not pop over to the Academics' Corner (in the Work Talk topic)?

I'll try to get back in here in a few hours & give you chapter & verse. Just rushing to finish something before I leave the office. (So tomorrow then ...)

JobSeekingWitterer Mon 21-Mar-16 17:38:56

Of course! Thank you.

JobSeekingWitterer Mon 21-Mar-16 17:41:28

Have cross-posted it there (in case people want to decamp there and not reply here).

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