Friday, October 20, 2006

Done with the sorting-out of "formal" application for the time being.

Bump into Tim at STICERD communal area. Ask him how serious I should be about the formal application. He says that it doesn't count for the US job market. What matters is when the recruiter solicits the submission of your application by contacting placement officers in each school. That's going to be late November. Your job market paper must be in good shape by that time. Some require formal application as a necessary condition. But, in general, US market is based on such informal network. For other countries, formal application may matter.

He doesn't think that applying for 100 schools, as often argued to be the best strategy, is sensible. Applying for 0 school is certainly not the best, either.

Give to Sue documents needed for my supervisor to write references (job market paper, transcripts, CV, and one-page letter which clarifies my CV, describes types of jobs to apply, and requests for including a statement on my English ability in letters).

Discuss Sue about how to arrange letters. She wants to send them all at once. But I won't be able to make all applications before the earliest deadline (according to some job market guide, recommendation letters must arrive slightly later than my own application). So ask her to send letters for the first group of schools, and to pass the rest to Leila. She's very supportive, saying, "I will do whatever you want. I'm a slave for you." This job market madness drives secretariats crazy as well.

Create three Excel spread sheets each of which includes addresses of schools to apply for sending letters of recommendation. Why three? Because my job market paper won't be fully ready before sending out aplication packets to meet the earliest deadlines. I decide to send the packets in three bunches so I can include the revised job market paper for schools with late deadlines.

Find out which school accepts letters via email. This makes a lot of difference. Given that it takes at most 5 days for airmail to arrive overseas from UK, the effective deadline changes a lot depending on whether schools accept letters via email or not.

Email my referees to tell them that the earliest "effective" deadline for sending reference letters as part of "formal" application is 6 November.

I think I've done with the arrangement of recommendation letters. I will make my own application early November, just before the first batch of reference letters will be dispatched on 6 November. Until then, I will focus on my job market paper.

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