Associate Professor

Last Updated:
July 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

An Associate Professor job description is an important position in the Education industry. This role involves teaching, researching, and creating engaging lesson plans for higher education students. Specific responsibilities include preparing course materials, grading assignments and exams, and conducting individual student meetings to provide feedback and guidance. Associate Professors also participate in university committees, collaborate with other educators, and publish research papers in academic journals.

To become an Associate Professor, you'll need a Ph.D. in your field of expertise, experience working as a teacher or lecturer, and a passion for sharing knowledge with others. Successful candidates have excellent communication skills, a commitment to continuing education, and a desire to contribute to the academic community. Associate Professors can work in a variety of educational institutions, including community colleges, universities, and other learning organizations. If you have a passion for education and a desire to make a difference in the lives of students, pursuing an Associate Professor career might be the perfect fit for you.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Teach undergraduate and/or graduate courses in a specific discipline.
  • Conduct research and publish scholarly articles or books in their field of expertise.
  • Mentor and advise students on academic and career-related issues.
  • Serve on committees related to academic policy, curriculum, and program development.
  • Participate in academic and professional conferences, workshops, and seminars.
  • Maintain relationships with colleagues and experts in their field to stay current on trends and best practices.
  • Collaborate with other faculty members and departments on interdisciplinary projects and initiatives.
  • Participate in community outreach programs and engage in service activities that benefit the school or local community.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become an Associate Professor in Education, you'll need to have a good education and plenty of experience. Most universities require a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) in Education or a related field like Curriculum and Instruction or Educational Psychology. This usually takes 5-7 years of studying and researching your chosen topic. 

Once you have your degree, you'll need to have some teaching experience. This can include classroom teaching, online teaching, or even one-on-one tutoring. You'll also need to have a solid research background with publications in respected academic journals. 

To stand out from the competition, you'll need to be involved in professional organizations and attend conferences to stay current on the latest trends in your field. And don't forget to have a passion for teaching, mentoring, and advising students!

Salary Range

If you're a teacher looking to advance your career, you may be curious about the "Associate Professor" position in the education industry. According to PayScale, the average salary for an Associate Professor in the United States is $73,282 per year, with a range of $51,000 to $114,000. However, the salary range varies depending on the institution's location, prestige, and funding. For instance, the salary for Associate Professors at Ivy League universities ranges between $109,000 to $168,000 per year, while community college Associate Professors earn an average of $55,000. Other countries, such as Canada and Australia, offer similar salaries, ranging from $60,000 to $100,000. Keep in mind that salaries may vary depending on the industry and location.


  • PayScale: Associate Professor Salaries []
  • Indeed: Associate Professor Salaries in Canada []
  • Seek: Associate Professor Salaries in Australia []

Career Outlook

The career outlook for an Associate Professor in the education industry over the next 5 years is optimistic. In fact, it is expected to grow steadily. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in postsecondary education is projected to increase by 9% from 2019 to 2029, which is faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is due to the increasing number of students attending college and the need for more instructors.

Additionally, there is an ongoing need for Associate Professors in specialized fields such as STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), healthcare, and education administration. This demand is expected to continue over the next few years.

Overall, the career outlook for an Associate Professor is positive. As long as they continue to hone their skills and stay current in their field, they should have many opportunities for advancement and success in the education industry.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What is an Associate Professor?

A: An Associate Professor is a higher education faculty member who has earned tenure and is responsible for teaching, research, and service to the university.

Q: What does an Associate Professor do on a daily basis?

A: An Associate Professor spends their day teaching courses, grading papers, conducting and publishing research, advising students, serving on committees, and attending meetings.

Q: What qualifications are required to become an Associate Professor?

A: An Associate Professor typically requires a doctoral degree in their field, a record of successful teaching and research, and a strong commitment to service to the university and community.

Q: What skills does someone need to have to succeed as an Associate Professor?

A: An Associate Professor must have excellent communication skills, be able to effectively manage their time, work collaboratively with colleagues, and keep up with the latest developments in their field.

Q: What career opportunities are available for an Associate Professor?

A: An Associate Professor can advance to the rank of full professor, move into administrative roles within the university, or pursue leadership opportunities in their area of expertise outside of academia.

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