Assistant Professor of Science Communication

Michigan State University

Job Type: Faculty, Tenure Track

Application Deadline: January 6, 2015

Michigan State Universityin East Lansing, MI invites applications for a tenure-system position as an Assistant Professor of Science Communication beginning in August 2015.  The position will be appointed jointly in the History, Philosophy, and Sociology of Science (HPS) group (75%) in Lyman Briggs College (LBC) and (25%) in either the School of Journalism or the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities (RCAH).

Candidates must have a Ph.D. in hand by August 15, 2015 in history, philosophy, sociology, literary studies, journalism, communication, or a related discipline and a demonstrated expertise in the scholarly study of science from either a humanistic or social science perspective. The successful candidate will teach HPS courses for predominantly science majors in LBC, including a freshman introduction to HPS and specialized upper-level undergraduate courses. The candidate will also be expected to teach one course per year in the joint unit (Journalism or RCAH). The candidate must maintain an active, externally recognized program of research.  We are open to a diverse range of scholarly pursuits related to the rhetoric, philosophy, or public understanding of science, technology, medicine and the environment. This includes scientists’ self-understanding and self-presentation or the ways publics both understand and influence scientific programs and endeavors.  We will take into account demonstrated potential for securing external funding.  Interests in diversity and inclusion as related to science communication would be especially welcome as would attention to global and nonwestern contexts. Preference will be given to applicants with a proven commitment to excellence and innovation in undergraduate teaching.  Salary and start-up support is competitive and commensurate with experience.

Founded in 1967, LBC ( is a vibrant undergraduate, residential, liberal arts college at MSU focusing on the study of science and its impact on society. The LBC curriculum integrates the natural sciences and mathematics with the history, philosophy and sociology of science. The LBC student body is 60% women and 20% students of color; also, 20% belong to MSU’s Honors College. LBC is also a leading center for research in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and for interdisciplinary scholarship. Faculty, staff, and students in LBC promote inclusion through a range of initiatives. The college, for example, hosts student groups such as the Briggs Multi-Cultural Alliance and Women in Science. Briggs faculty, staff, and students have also won university awards for diversity and inclusion for their instruction and research.Each tenure-system faculty member has a joint appointment in a disciplinary unit to support their scholarship and professional development.

This position’s joint appointment with RCAH or Journalism will add to MSU’s investment in cross-college and interdisciplinary collaboration.  The RCAH ( is a living-learning community in which students and faculty are committed to exploring the intersection of the arts, humanities and civic engagement. The RCAH would welcome a scholar-practitioner whose interdisciplinary research engages the intersection of science and humanities, and shares a commitment to thinking about the role of the arts and humanities in the public sphere and community settings. The College would also welcome scholars who, in addition to meeting the essential criteria described above, include arts practice in their professional work

The School of Journalism ( would welcome a social scientist to complement current strengths in new media technologies, international communication, environmental journalism, or risk and health journalism. Scholars with strong methodological skills and interests in visual communication, big data, and media effects are encouraged to apply.  The candidate would be expected to work with faculty in the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism, the CAS Health & Risk Communication Center and other units at MSU.  CAS was the first college of communication in the country, and MSU is the only university in the country with two top 10 doctoral programs in the National Research Council’s rankings in the field of Communication.

This position can be found on the MSU Applicant Page, posting #0550. Applications must be uploaded to MSU’s online job application site,, and should include a cover letter, CV, teaching portfolio, and statement of research interests.  For teaching portfolio details, see  In addition, three letters of recommendation addressing the candidate’s research and teaching must be submitted electronically by the recommenders through the application system.  The deadline to ensure best consideration of applications is January 6, 2015, but review of applications will continue until the position is filled.  Questions regarding this position may be directed to the search committee chair, Professor Richard Bellon ( or at Lyman Briggs College; 919 E. Shaw Lane; Room E-35; Michigan State University; East Lansing, MI 48825-1107.

Posted: December 03, 2014