I am going to apply for a faculty position via online system. In the announcement of the position they have just asked for cover letter, contact info of references and C.V. But in the online process of application I noticed that there exists some taps related to uploading transcripts of B.Sc, M.Sc and Ph.D. I do not know whether they need transcripts or not? Can a bad transcript have bad effect on applying for a a faculty position?

  • What sort of institution is this? Primarily research or primarily teaching?
    – Buffy
    Dec 19, 2020 at 15:01
  • @Buffy It is primarly teaching institute.
    – user40491
    Dec 19, 2020 at 17:03

2 Answers 2


Sorry that I'm a bit late for an answer, but there are some things you should consider. The answer of Clément provides the basic guidance, but, since this is a teaching institution, rather than a research one, it may be that undergraduate performance is more relevant to a decision than otherwise. Normally, the things you have done long in your past are treated as less relevant to how you will perform now, but teaching institutions have a need to know how you will deal with students and their myriad problems.

If you have a poor undergraduate record, then the reasons might worth examining. Let me give two scenarios.

First, it is possible that you were just less engaged with your education as an undergraduate and only learned later the importance of hard work.

Second, it is also possible that you just struggled as a student for whatever reason, but pushed through but with a less than stellar record.

You might be asked by such an institution why you have a poor record and it would be good to have thought it out in advance. Neither of the above scenarios is damning, and either can give you some insight into students and how to teach them effectively. But think about how you were able to improve things later and what it took: internal fortitude, helpful advisors, ... , whatever.

Let me also describe the alternate scenario of someone who always did well and has a near perfect record. It might well be that such a person has no idea whatever about how students struggle and how to help them. Everything to them was easy and they expect it to be easy for others. It will take that person a long while to become an effective teacher; one who is not overly judgmental.

Teaching is much, much, more than the flawless presentation of material.

These are extreme cases, I realize. But think about your own situation and how you came to succeed and how that might make you a better teacher.

  • 1
    You are perfectly correct that for primarily teaching-oriented institutions, those scenarios reflect the possible importance given to transcripts. Thanks for complementing my answer.
    – Clément
    Dec 19, 2020 at 21:41
  • Your answer includes some important points, which I definitely consider them. Thank you very much
    – user40491
    Dec 19, 2020 at 23:07

I do not know whether they need transcripts or not?

There are two slightly orthogonal aspects when you apply to faculty positions:

  1. What the panel will use to determine if they will offer an interview,
  2. What the administration requires for your application to be complete.

The announcement will focus on 1., but when actually applying, you may realize that 2. is a bit different.

If the application platform requires your transcripts, upload them, and don't think too much about them: they may or may not be reviewed by the panel, but what you did during your PhD and your cover letter will have a greater weight than those transcripts.

If the application platform does not require the transcripts, then I guess it's up to you. You can probably just upload them later on if the panel would like to have a look at it, but as Bill Barth noted in the comment, that is probably not a good idea to give the panel a possible reason to filter out your application before even looking at it.

Can a bad transcript have bad effect on applying for a a faculty position?

As I wrote, they can, but whether they will depends on multiple factors that are hard to assess. I believe it is reasonably safe to say that your PhD, cover letter, and possibly letter(s) of recommendation will have a greater weight, but that does not necessarily imply that your transcript will have a zero weight.

Good luck, I hope your application will receive favorable reviews!

  • 5
    I wouldn’t take a risk and fail to include requested application elements, even if in the end the committee doesn’t want to look at them. Don’t give them a reason to filter out your application before looking at it. There may be hundreds of other applicants and they may use incomplete applications as a pre-filter before reviewing individual apps to reduce the load.
    – Bill Barth
    Dec 19, 2020 at 16:54
  • @BillBarth Good point. I've edited my answer. Thanks.
    – Clément
    Dec 19, 2020 at 17:41
  • @Clément Also I appreciate you for your answer with positive words
    – user40491
    Dec 20, 2020 at 0:38

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