Full-time Positions in Academic Writing and Intellectual Breadth

Posted 1 year ago

The Academic Writing and Humanities departments at UM-SJTU JI, located in Shanghai, China invites applications for full-time positions in Academic Writing and Intellectual Breadth.

The positions offer an exciting opportunity to teach some of the highest-achieving students in China while living in Shanghai, a world-class, cosmopolitan metropolis. The successful candidates will contribute directly to the continuing development of a young program in collaboration with an energetic and diverse community of faculty members.

The UM-SJTU JI is an English-based higher education institute founded in 2006, in collaboration between the University of Michigan and Shanghai Jiao Tong University. This partnership commits fully to developing JI as a world-class institute for engineering education. In 2014, JI was the first Chinese institution to win the prestigious Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education—one of the highest honors in international higher education. In a short time, JI has become an exemplary model of Sino-American educational collaboration.

First-Year Academic Writing (AW) courses are sequenced over the Fall and Spring trimesters and aim to teach students the principles, conventions, and styles of Academic Writing. Essay assignments focus on critical thinking skills, the multi-draft writing process, and academic research across a variety of genres and disciplines. The LAD values diversity and innovation, and individual lecturers are encouraged to develop their own courses based on subjects and texts within their own fields of research.

Intellectual Breadth (IB) courses encompass a variety of non-engineering disciplines including Philosophy, Social Sciences, Literature, History, and Creative Writing. This coursework is equivalent to what is often called “general education” and it serves a critical function in broadening the intellectual horizons of our high-achieving students.

JI operates on a trimester schedule, and successful candidates are expected to teach six courses a year. The anticipated teaching ratio for this position is 4 AW and 2 IB courses, two courses per trimester, scheduled approximately as follows:

A 13-week Fall trimester, mid-September to early December

A 10-week, accelerated Spring trimester, late-February to late-April

A 14-week Summer trimester, mid-May to early August

Due to the irregularity of Chinese and American holidays, JI’s Winter vacation lasts from early December to late-February, and summer vacation lasts from early August to mid-September.

Please note that SJTU’s hiring process is a rather long timeline and candidates should set their expectations and plan accordingly.


  • Teach First-Year Academic Writing courses
  • Teach Intellectual Breadth courses according to faculty qualifications and interest and according to institutional needs
  • Prepare and conduct lectures, design homework, and supervise examinations
  • Maintain office hours
  • Guide Teaching Assistants
  • Maintain a course website containing teaching materials and relevant course information
  • Participate in program development and other common non-teaching, service duties


  • PhD in a relevant discipline
  • Two years of full-time or equivalent university teaching experience in Academic Writing
  • Experience designing a self-standing, evidence-based, First-Year Academic Writing course
  • Interest or experience in China and/or in working with Chinese students
  • Experience teaching non-native English speakers


  • Competitive starting salary, based on education and experience
  • Health insurance
  • A supplemental housing subsidy
  • Moving allowance reimbursement
  • Chinese language courses

To apply for this position, please send your application materials to both the JI Human Resources office at ji-acwr@sjtu.edu.cn and to Dr. Ryan Thorpe, the search chair, at ryan.thorpe@sjtu.edu.cn. For any inquiries, please contact Dr. Thorpe.

Please submit items 1-4 below together in one single pdf document labeled with applicant name and position title.

  1. Cover letter (please mention where you learned of this position)
  2. Statement of Teaching Philosophy, either woven into the Cover Letter or presented as a separate document
  3. CV with contact information for three references.
  4. Recent Teaching Evaluations

Applicants who have advanced through the first round of interviews will be asked to provide a short teaching demonstration.

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