How are faculty job positions in a US university evaluated? Do the committee members get to view (and discuss) electronic copies of a candidate's application before the hiring meeting (and possibly filter out some applications before the formal meeting), or is everything done in the meeting? I am asking because I think one needs to prepare the application differently in the two circumstances. If electronic copy of the application is emailed to the faculty members, then one can insert hyperlinks in the research statement E.g.:

"blah blah blah [1]"

where clicking on "[1]" would take you to a website. But if a printout is given to the committee members, one needs to make sure all the info you want to convey is in the printout e.g. web addresses will need to be spelled out instead of being embedded.

  • 5
    Probably depends on the university and the committee members. If you are going to cite a URI, I would spell it out in full -- make it a real footnote. You can also make it a live link in case someone is viewing it online, but don't assume they're going to do so.
    – keshlam
    Sep 14, 2014 at 14:39

2 Answers 2


We've had a variety of practices. Some of it depends on the computer literacy of the admin assistant doing the application file processing. We've had cases of electronic material (PDFs) being printed out and then rescanned back in as the staff person did not know how to collate multiple PDFs into a single document.

[HEAD PALM] Sigh...

To be entirely fair, some of our faculty are also very visual-tactile and will prefer print out the dossier and read it there, rather than online.

In other words, you can't assume anything about how the files will be handled. You should be explicit in the URLs. If you have media files on disk or thumb drive (photographs, video, source code, simulations, etc.), then you should also post a visible link to an archive location.


I was (twice) on a hiring committee for a tenure-track math professor. Applicants uploaded their applications via a central repository (MathJobs) and we evaluated them asynchronously. I read a lot of applications at 11:00 pm on my laptop; one of my colleagues printed everything out. We only met to discuss candidates we thought highly of.

You should write a self-contained research statement that does not require hyperlinks. It is probably harmless to include them; for example, your bibliography might be hyperlinked, or your research statement might say, e.g. "A visual demonstration of this phenomenon can be found on my web site at [URL]", where [URL] gives the full URL and is a hyperlink. This probably won't help you, but it might, and I can't imagine it hurting you.

One thing you should also do is to update your personal web page. Preprints of all of your publications, teaching materials (e.g. syllabi for past classes), slides for talks you've given, etc., etc. -- anything you hope a hiring committee might look at should be there. Ensure that googling your name, together with either the name of your university or of your subject area, will lead to the searcher finding these materials within three seconds.

Fields other than math might vary. Good luck!

  • I'd add to this that you should setup profiles for yourself on Google Scholar, Web of Science, etc. This will make it easier for evaluators to look at the impact of your research by seeing who has cited your work. You should also provide links to these profiles from your personal web page. Feb 12, 2015 at 4:00

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