The number of applicants for the Macaulay Instructional Technology Fellowship each year is very high, and the number of available positions is small. While the exact numbers vary from year to year, in recent years we have been able to offer positions to less than 10% of the applicants. To ensure the strongest possible ITF cohort and fairness of opportunity to all applicants, the Director of Teaching, Learning and Technology manages a rigorous and competitive selection process.
The process begins in February with an announcement to all the Executive Officers at the Grad Center. We ask them to post and circulate the announcement among students in their programs. We also post the announcement on our website and send it to the Doctoral Students Council at the GC. The current ITFs also spread the word among their own networks at the GC. The application deadline is set for March. The application itself (submitted online) includes a general information form, a CV, and a personal statement. On that general information form, we ask applicants to identify any Macaulay campus where they would NOT be able to accept an assignment.
After the application deadline, the committee goes through all the applications to determine which candidates will be called in for an interview. The committee is made up of the Macaulay Chief Academic Officer, the Director of Teaching, Learning and Technology, the Senior ITFs, and sometimes representatives from the CUNY Graduate Center, from CUNY Central, and from the Macaulay seminar faculty. The ultimate decisions are made by the Director of Teaching, Learning and Technology, informed by the advice of the committee.
The committee scores each application using a rubric which emphasizes teaching experience, experience with technologies that are most valuable in the seminars, and a sophisticated understanding of the role of technology in higher education. We also strive to achieve the maximum diversity (including diversity of academic disciplines) in the ITF cohort. The committee interviews the candidates with the strongest applications, and then ranks the candidates based on the interview, the needs of the college, and the application materials.
Even the candidates who were not at the very top of our list are still, in many cases, very strong. So after our final selection, we share the list of the strongest candidates with other CUNY campuses where there are similar opportunities available. Even though the number of Macaulay ITF positions is limited, ITF or similar positions are becoming increasingly common in CUNY units and programs, and it is not unusual for candidates who are not offered positions at Macaulay to be offered positions of various kinds elsewhere in CUNY. These other offers are not managed or determined by Macaulay, and candidates who do not wish to be offered other positions can elect not to be considered.
After the successful candidates have been identified, we confirm their eligibility with the Graduate Center’s Human Resources and Provost’s offices. Then we make the matches to specific campuses, considering the ITF’s preferences, the needs of the campus, and the needs of Macaulay as a whole. ITFs are then offered an appointment letter, identifying the campus to which they will be assigned, and spelling out the requirements of the program. These appointment letters must be signed and returned promptly to the Graduate Center.
In May, there is an orientation meeting for all new ITFs, at which we discuss the schedule for the coming year, the requirements of the position, and what can be done over the summer to prepare for the beginning of the fall. There is another orientation meeting for new ITFs just before the students arrive for their orientation (which all ITFs are required to attend), just before the beginning of the fall semester.
All ITF appointments are for one year, renewable at the discretion of the Director and contingent on availability of funding.