Thinking Matters Fellowship

Teaching Positions for the First-year Liberal Education Requirement

The Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education (VPUE) at Stanford University is now accepting applications for teaching fellowship positions in Thinking Matters, a program that honors the freshman educational tradition first established at Stanford in 1919. Required Thinking Matters courses foster intellectual curiosity and the development of critical inquiry and support first-year students in achieving a successful transition to college-level learning.

We invite applications from candidates who are interested in teaching in the framework of a liberal education requirement for first-year students. In the application process, all candidates must identify the courses that fit their teaching experience and training. We seek candidates in the Humanities and/or in the Social Sciences, particularly from the fields of philosophy and ethics. Eligible candidates will have earned a doctorate in a relevant field, conferred no earlier than 2014 and no later than August 2020. We intend to hire between 6 and 8 fellows.

Fellows will be placed on teaching teams with senior faculty and other fellows in three different courses, one each in autumn, winter and spring quarters. Fellows lead two seminar discussions (averaging 15 students each) twice weekly; they individualize student learning through regular tutorial sessions; and they coordinate instruction with plenum lectures given by Stanford faculty. The appointment begins August 1, 2020 for a two-year term that is renewable for one additional year depending on programmatic need and job performance. Fellows are typically released from teaching responsibilities for one quarter during the second year. Annual starting salary will be at least $71,000 with a supplemental stipend of $2,000 for research and scholarship.

Applications will open March 31, 2020 and close April 23, 2020, and must be submitted through Interfolio. Offers of employment are made contingent upon the successful completion of a background check and ability to demonstrate eligibility to work in the US.

To apply for the 2020-21 Thinking Matters Fellowship:

Step One: Cluster Identification

Before you submit your application online, please rank two course clusters (primary and secondary) for which you would like to be considered. A full two- year fellowship position will require placement in three courses, one each in autumn, winter and spring. Because applications are evaluated in relation to the courses offered, we ask you to think carefully about which courses may be the best match for your background in scholarship and teaching.

Course Cluster Information 

Step Two: Gather Application Materials

Compile the following materials:

1. Letter of application that addresses all aspects of your qualifications including:

a. Demonstrated excellence in teaching, especially frosh;

b. Relevant research and teaching related to courses;

c. Example of how you would teach at least one text or topic from our curriculum;

d. Experience with team-teaching (recommended).

2. Current curriculum vitae. Please list the names of at least two references.

3. Optional: summary of student, peer and/or other teaching evaluations from your most recent course taught: 3 page maximum. Do not submit individual student forms or letters from individual students.

Step Three: Online Submission of Application Materials and Information

Once all required documents have been gathered, process your application through your Interfolio account (or create a free account with interfolio, ). To submit your application:

1. Log-in to your Interfolio account and search for “Stanford.”

2. Locate and select Stanford Fellowship Position 2020-21.

3. Complete profile and enter requested information about cluster preferences:

a. Demographic Profile: including, degree granting institution, and date of Ph.D. (which must have been earned no earlier than 2014).

b. Applications will be considered incomplete if the Demographic Profile is missing information.

c. Identify two course clusters.

4. Fulfill all document requirements. You will be able to add additional materials later.

5. Save and submit your application.

Final deadline for submitting your completed application is April 23, 2020.

If you choose to withdraw, or if you have any additional concerns, please contact Please visit us online at

Stanford University is an equal employment opportunity and affirmative action employer and is committed to recruiting and hiring qualified women, minorities, protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.


Thinking Matters Fellows