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Job ID: 132316

Assistant Professor, Visual Communication
Northern Illinois University

Date Posted Oct. 24, 2019
Title Assistant Professor, Visual Communication
University Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL, United States
Department School of Art and Design, College of Visual and Performing Arts
Application Deadline Jan. 15, 2020
Position Start Date Fall 2020 Term
  • Assistant Professor
  • Digital Media
    Design - Graphic Design/Illustration
    Communications/Information Systems

The School of Art and Design at Northern Illinois University invites applications for one tenure-track position in the area of Visual Communication, at the rank of Assistant Professor, beginning Fall 2020.

NIU, located 65 miles west from Chicago, is a comprehensive teaching and research-based institution with close to 17,000 currently enrolled students. The main campus is located in DeKalb, 65 miles west of Chicago’s "Loop" and 40 miles southeast of Rockford. In addition to the main campus, NIU has three education centers in Hoffman Estates, Rockford, and Naperville. DeKalb/Sycamore, with a population of about 50,000, is a modern paradox, a rural/urban community. It is simultaneously recognized for its manufacturing and rich farmlands. The site of the first manufacture of barbed wire and the development of hybrid seed corn are evidence of its diversified history. The blend of industry and agriculture, coupled with the cultural and recreational facilities of the university and supplemented by easy access to Chicago and Rockford, provide an enjoyable environment in which to live.

The Visual Communication program at NIU provides an intellectually based, professional education that focuses on graphic form and communication, design as a problem-solving process, the relationship of design to culture, design theory and practice, design research and concept development skills-all of which are needed to produce significant and impactful solutions.

Position Summary
The Assistant Professor, Visual Communication is an Interaction Design specialist with industry experience and teaching experience in: Web Design, User Experience Design (UX), User Interface Design (UI), and Mobile Device Application prototyping and design.


  • Teaching Interaction Design courses in the Visual Communication program.
  • Maintaining an ongoing record of research and artistry.
  • Performing professional and university service.
  • Participating in the assessment of student work, program and curricular development, including the development of the graduate program in Visual Communication.

Required Qualifications

  • A terminal degree (M.F.A.) in Visual Communication, Graphic Design, Web Design or equivalent field of study from an accredited (recognized equivalent) university completed by June 30, 2020.
  • Two years teaching experience in Graphic Design, or related field at the university level (this may include teaching assistantships).
  • Able to contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, creative and scholarly activities, teaching, advising and service.
  • Knowledge of emerging technologies and grounded in contemporary concepts, principles, design practices, and software tools.
  • Able to assist managing student workers and maintaining the student lab and equipment.
  • At least two years of professional experience.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Two or more years of professional experience.
  • Administrative Experience.
  • Expert skills in applicable software and emerging technologies.
  • Grounded in the contemporary concepts, principles and design practices.
  • Effectiveness as a mentor and advisor of students.
  • Record of active participation in professional organizations.
  • Able to collaborate in curricular development that integrates current practices from the visual communication industry with a cross-disciplinary approach.

Application Process

Preference will be given to applications received by January 15, 2020. Applicants must apply online at and upload the following materials:

  • A cover letter that describes the candidate’s teaching, research experience, and interests that address the duties and qualifications as articulated in the position description.
  • A curriculum vitae comprised of at least those elements specified in the application form and including names, titles, addresses, e-mail addresses and telephone numbers of at least five individuals who can speak to the candidate’s potential for success in this position.
  • Artist Statement
  • Diversity Statement
  • Teaching Statement
  • Portfolio of candidate’s recent work (20 digital images in PDF format with links to online content: websites, interactive designs and videos).
  • A teaching portfolio of the candidate’s students’ work (20 digital images and/or up to 5 minutes of video), syllabi, and student evaluations for classes taught by the candidate.
  • An unofficial transcript showing the highest degree earned by the candidate (official transcript will be required upon hire).
    o Note: Finalists (individuals who are invited to campus interviews) for the position will be required to provide three letters of recommendation dated within the last two years.

Final candidates being interviewed are expected to make a scholarly presentation to an audience of faculty, staff and students, and to interact with students.

The position is open until filled. First consideration will be given to completed applications received no later than January 15, 2020. Early response is encouraged. Salary is commensurate with experience and qualifications.

  • EEO Statement, ADA Accommodation, Clery Information, and Visa Policy

    In accordance with applicable statutes and regulations, NIU is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, religion, age, physical and mental disability, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, political affiliation, or any other factor unrelated to professional qualifications, and will comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations and orders pertaining to nondiscrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action.

    The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Acting Ethics and Compliance Officer, Title IX Coordinator
    Altgeld Hall 238 815-753-5560

    Office for Civil Rights
    U.S. Department of Education Citigroup Center
    500 W. Madison Street, Suite 1475
    Chicago, IL 60661-4544

    NIU remains committed to ensuring that its recruitment and application procedures include full opportunities for applicants with disabilities. Employment opportunities will not be denied to anyone because of the need to make accommodations for a person’s disability during either the application or interview process. An applicant who believes they require an accommodation to participate in the employment process due to a disability may request that accommodation through the Accommodation Request Form. This form can be obtained by contacting the Office of Academic Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ADEI) at 815-753-8399.

    NIU provides information regarding campus security, personal and fire safety, including topics such as: crime prevention, emergency response procedures and crime reporting policies, in addition to crime and fire statistics for the most recent three calendar years. The Annual Security Report containing security and safety information is available at or by contacting the University Police Department and Public Safety Department at 815-753-9628 to receive a hard copy. The Annual Fire Safety Report is available at or by contacting the Environmental Health and Safety Department at 815-753-0404 to receive a hard copy.

    In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification document from upon hire.

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Contact Information

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