An associate professor educates at a higher-education institution such as a community college, college,, or university. The main job of an associate professor typically is to teach students and conduct research, and they typically have the same job responsibilities as a full professor; the major difference is that associate professors have not yet attained tenure.
They are responsible for developing an extensive curriculum, assessment modules, and lesson plans. They then must implement their curriculum to a class of students ranging from small classes to large lecture halls. Occasionally, they may be assigned a specific unit plan to teach, and they must implement the unit they’re given and assess students’ work. Some associate professors act as academic advisers to part of the student body, assisting students in developing a plan for their education. They may also employ graduate students as teaching assistants or researchers.
Associate professors typically teach in the area in which they have formal education. Most associate professors are required to have a Ph.D. or master's degree in their field. Associate professors are expected to attend professional development opportunities and staff meetings. They must stay knowledgeable about the field they teach, and stay up to date on new technology and research that should be incorporated into their curriculum. They often print articles in academic journals and attend/speak at professional conferences.
Associate Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education Tasks
- Participate in university and departmental meetings and policy reviews.
- Create course syllabi, materials, readings, and grading rubrics.
- Teach online and in-person courses to meet learning objectives.
- Write grants and conduct research.