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Inside Graduate Admissions: An Introduction for Future Faculty

Tuesday, October 17, 2017
2:30 pm to 3:30 pm

Graduate students and postdocs preparing for faculty careers at research institutions will likely participate in graduate admissions—but they likely have little information about the process. Who does the system work for, and who falls through its cracks? Drawing on firsthand observations of admission committees and interviews with faculty in 10 top-ranked doctoral programs in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences, Dr. Julie Posselt will pull back the curtain on a process usually conducted in secret. Posselt presents admissions from decision makers’ point of view, including thought-provoking episodes of committees debating the process, interviewing applicants, and grappling with borderline cases. Who ultimately makes the admit list reveals as much about how professors see themselves—and each other—as it does about how they view students. To help future faculty members promote transparency and accountability, Posselt shares concrete strategies to improve admissions review. This session will include ample opportunity for questions and conversation.

About the speaker: Dr. Julie Posselt is Assistant Professor of higher education in the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education and a National Academy of Education/ Spencer Foundation postdoctoral research fellow. Her book Inside Graduate Admissions: Merit, Diversity, and Faculty Gatekeeping was published by Harvard University Press in 2016.

This event is sponsored by The Graduate School and is offered as part of the Academic Job Search Series, co-sponsored by the Office of Postdoctoral Services and Duke Career Center. Questions? Contact The Graduate School's professional development team at

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Perkins Library rm 217
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Event Category

  • Professional Development