© 2006

Academic Scientists at Work


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XVII
  2. The Starting Gate

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Pages 3-20
    3. Pages 21-31
    4. Pages 33-48
    5. Pages 69-78
  3. Down the Stretch

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 79-79
    2. Pages 81-95
    3. Pages 97-106
    4. Pages 107-118
    5. Pages 119-132
  4. The Finish Line

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 133-133
    2. Pages 135-147
    3. Pages 149-160
  5. The Extras Section (Daily Double)

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 223-289

About this book


Academic Scientists at Work, 2nd Edition
Jeremy M. Boss & Susan H. Eckert
Academic Scientists at Work guides the scientist on the journey from the end of a postdoctoral career to the point of promotion to Associate Professor.
This book focuses on the three aspects of promotion in an academic setting: Scholarship, Teaching, and Service. Valuable advice is provided on the following topics:
Choosing and landing your ideal academic job
Setting up and effectively managing the lab
Obtaining funds
Organizing, writing, and publishing your science
Teaching and mentoring
Organizing and performing academic service
The promotion and tenure process
Templates and worksheets designed to help you navigate your career with point-by-point instructions on how to complete them are provided.
In addition to updating the contents of the previous version, this second edition includes a dozen articles written by the authors on managing your career that first appeared in Science's Next Wave.
Academic Scientists at Work is a valuable resource for the career scientist who demands and expects the best.
Jeremy M. Boss’s career spans scholarship, teaching, and service. Dr. Boss is an author of more than 85 published research articles and a recipient of federal research grants for 18 years. Dr. Boss has taught in a variety of immunology and genetics related graduate school courses, served on over 70 Ph.D. thesis committees, and is the current Director of Emory University's graduate program in Genetics and Molecular Biology. Dr. Boss joined the faculty of Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology in 1986, where he has been a Professor since 1997.
Susan H. Eckert is a university health sciences administrator and faculty advocate. The focus of Dr. Eckert’s doctoral research and continuing interest is leadership issues that affect faculty development in research intensive universities. Dr. Eckert is Associate Dean for Administration at the Emory University School of Nursing. She received her Ph.D. in higher education policy in 1995 from Georgia State University.


Job science service

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and ImmunologyEmory University School of MedicineAtlanta
  2. 2.Associate Dean for AdministrationEmory University School of NursingAtlanta

About the authors

Jeremy M. Boss’s career spans scholarship, teaching, and service. As author of more than 70 published research articles, Dr. Boss has taught in a variety of immunology and genetics related graduate school courses, served on 65 PhD thesis committees, and is currently course director for an immunology graduate course. Dr. Boss joined the faculty of Emory University School of Medicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology in 1986, where he has been a Professor since 1997.

Susan H. Eckert received her doctorate in Higher Education Policy from Georgia State University in 1995. The focus of Dr. Eckert’s research was leadership issues that affect medical school basic science departments in research intensive universities. Dr. Eckert is currently the Associate Dean for Finance and Research Administration at the Emory University School of Nursing.

Bibliographic information


Praise for the First Edition:

"Overall the advice in the book is excellent and adequately covers the three major areas of running the lab: people, money, and science. It is difficult to find glaring omissions on any of the topics  that are covered. The book starts with a discussion of how to obtain a job. Sources to fiind job openings are outlined, and there are instructions on writing the key documents: a CV, a research proposal, and a cover letter. Many questions that postdoctoral fellows have when they enter the job market are answered in this chapter."

- Cell

"Assuming that the more you know about a task the better you are likely to perform it then this book should be studied in depth by every aspiring academic scientist. However, they would also benefit just from browsing through this book. It is packed with useful tips on how to solve problems that few rookie academic scientists will have imagined but most will encounter. Its humorous style makes the book easy to read but its lessons can prevent serious problems. On a first causal reading the rookie scientist will find this book amusing and informative. However, the book will become even more valuable as they reread it again in subsequent years when they encounter the inevitable hurdles that arise to block their path to success."

- Charles P. Moran, Jr., Professor of Microbiology at Emory University

"Drs. Boss and Eckert write an exceptionally useful book for all who consider and enter academic scientific careers. I wish I had this book when I began; it contains all the secrets for success. The book is well written and a highly enjoyable read being both funny yet serious. As a chairman, I am going to get this book for all my junior faculty."

- Stephen T. Warren, PhD, FACMG, William Patterson Timmie Professor of Human Genetics, Chairman of the Department of Human Genetics, Emory University School of Medicine

Advance Praise for the 2nd Edition:

"As a young faculty member, I have found much of the advice to be well conceived, insightful, and effective. I anticipate that I will continue to consult this work as I my career advances and I encounter new challenges and overcome new obstacles. "

- Ingrid K. Ruf. Ph.D., Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, University of California, Irvine

"Altogether this remains an essential resource for postdocs and junior faculty as well as for those senior level faculty and administrators who are charged with responsibility to provide career and professional skills guidance to the next generation of academic scientists."

- Susan Rich, Ph.D., Associate Dean for Life Sciences, The Graduate School, University of Alabama at Birmingham

"As the authors point out, academic career development is too often left undiscussed between mentor and mentee, sometimes with dire consequences. This book is both a rescue plan for such individuals, and a superb career development manual for the rest of us."

- Dr. Martin E. Feder, Department of Organismal Biology & Anatomy, The University of Chicago