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Assistant or Associate Professor of Design

Corcoran School of the Arts + Design, George Washington University
Washington D.C.
Salary commensurate with experience plus full benefits and research support startup package.
Date posted
Dec 8, 2023

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Position Type
Faculty Positions
Employment Level
Non-Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time

The Design Program within the Corcoran School of the Arts + Design at the George Washington University invites applications for an Assistant or Associate Professor of Design. This position is a full-time, nine-month ranked non-tenure accruing position with a renewable three-year commitment beginning in Fall 2024. The position accrues all benefits offered to full-time faculty including eligibility for sabbatical and fellowship leave, University funding competitions, and promotion processes. For priority consideration at the Associate level, the applicant will have interest in taking on the role of Program Head for Design either from point of hire or after a short settling in period.

We seek a colleague whose research, teaching, and creative practice addresses the future of design at the intersections of interaction, experience, and digital contexts. The successful applicant will have a well-established and active record of professional achievement and a strong trajectory of recognized work that may be scholarly or critical, client-driven, and/or self-generated. The applicant will be expected to teach in any of the following areas: designing for interactive or immersive experiences including but not limited to XR, AR, VR, 2d/3d motion or web; experience design; data visualization; user interface design, user experience research and testing processes; leading multidisciplinary testing or research teams across design, marketing, and engineering; and/or related design practices.

We welcome applicants with broad based expertise in contemporary issues and practices in design and the skills to connect design with innovative work across disciplines, anticipate roles of new technologies in culture, or whose work emphasizes collaborative, ethics-oriented areas of practice in relationship with new technologies (such as community-engaged design, transitional design, design justice). 

The Design program’s curriculum and research agenda is built on a backbone of socially-engaged design and aimsto actively engage Washington, DC as a site where design and power intersect. Areas of focus in teaching include the role of design in re/imagining worlds, structuring institutional procedures or policy mechanisms that enforce design, and/or assembling and implementing inclusive community-led design processes. 

The new faculty member will teach, advise and mentor students at all levels of the Interaction Design BFA/BA and MA programs with options for teaching across Graphic Design and Exhibition Design. The faculty member will play a significant role in building Design community, contribute to pedagogical innovation and curriculum development, support the growth and development of the Design Program, and participate in School, College, and/or University service.  All faculty are expected to be actively involved in their design discipline and to produce creative research and/or work. GW Corcoran will sustain the new faculty member’s research with startup funding and support for initiating opportunities for collaboration and grant funding across the University. 

For applicants at the Associate level, we seek a committed and collaborative colleague to play a leadership role in shaping the future of the Design Program. As Program Head, the new faculty member will serve as the strategic and administrative leader of the Design Program, working in close collaboration with the leadership of the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design. This position is a stipend-bearing academic leadership appointment for a three-year term.

The Corcoran School of the Arts and Design is an interdisciplinary art and design environment within a large, diverse research university. We invite applications from applicants who contribute to the academic and creative community's multiplicity of approaches and experiences through their teaching, research/creative practice, and/or service. Applications by individuals from groups historically underrepresented in academia are particularly welcomed. The Corcoran School of the Arts & Design strives to foster diversity, equity, and justice in our academic and creative communities. The Design Program seeks to contribute to this mission both in the orientation of our degree programs and in our daily practices. As a central mediator in the relationships between people and the systems around them in contemporary society, culture, commerce, and government, the design fields have the potential to describe and rethink how we live. In daily practice, we center support of faculty and student research and creative practice, the structure of curricula, coordination of public programming, and the cultivation of an inclusive studio culture.

About the University: 

The Design Program at the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design is grounded in human-centered problem-solving in an interdisciplinary design context, educating undergraduate and graduate students in interaction design, graphic design, and exhibition design. The Design Program is supported by the creative community and resources of the Corcoran School. Design faculty and students draw on resources across the Corcoran School, including the Digital Fabrication Lab and the Materials Library. The Design Program’s Engagement Lab course has established community partnerships with the DC Office of Planning, Library of Congress Labs, Sasha Bruce Youthwork, and the City of Mount Rainier, MD. Developing collaborations with the Honey W. Nashman Center for Civic Engagement and Public Service and the Innovation Center in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are sites of growing conversations, curricular connections, and student participation. With this opportunity to hire new faculty, the Design Program seeks to expand on existing strengths and identify new opportunities and collaborative points of connection in order to prepare our students to excel in a discipline defined by change.

The Corcoran School of the Arts & Design at the George Washington University prepares its graduates to be the next generation of global creative leaders with more than 20 degree programs in the fields of Art History, Studio Arts, Design, Theatre and Dance, Music, Museum Studies, and Interior Architecture. Part of the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, the school functions as an incubator for artists, designers, and scholars, who learn from internationally renowned faculty at the intersection of creativity and social innovation.  A newly established partnership between GW Corcoran and the National Gallery of Art supports opportunities for students and faculty to engage in interdisciplinary research, programming and creative practice. We are a community of civically engaged artists and practitioners, aiming to impact the world through creative change. Our students are poised to not just join the field of their choice, but to define it for themselves as they become well versed in both practice and research. 

As part of the George Washington University’s Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, we embody and exemplify the College’s Engaged Liberal Arts credo, which strives to link disparate fields and better prepare our graduates for rich, multidimensional careers in the evolving world we live in. The challenges society faces are diverse, requiring different modes of thought, and we prepare our students by encouraging inquiry and collaboration.

The Corcoran School of the Arts & Design’s home in the heart of downtown Washington, D.C. means that our students tap into both a vibrant, historied local city and a nerve center of international culture and government. We have a strong track record of students initiating new creative ventures and placing with top-ranked employers after graduation, with students working and studying at some of D.C.’s most prestigious companies, galleries, museums and design firms.

Duties and Responsibilities

 At the Assistant level, responsibilities include:

  •  Teaching Design studio and seminar classes at all levels of the Interaction Design BFA/BA and MA programs with options for teaching across Graphic Design and Exhibition Design.
  • Maintaining a professional design practice and/or scholarly research.
  • Actively recruiting students at the undergraduate and graduate levels;
  • Mentoring and advising students and participating in student retention efforts;
  • Maintaining departmental and student records;
  • Contributing to Design curricula development and innovation;
  • Contributing to Design program community and identity development;
  • Participating in departmental and university service and university meetings as they relate to faculty and departmental and college committee service.

At the Associate level, additional responsibilities include:

  • Leading Design curricula development and innovation;
  • Leading program identity development activities;
  • Evaluating faculty performance;
  • Participating in School and Program level development efforts.

Minimum Qualifications 

Applicants must have at the time of appointment:

  • Terminal degree in design or related field from an accredited institution or a minimum of five years of professional experience.
  • A well-established and active professional design career (client-driven or self-initiated) with a creative practice and/or research interests including but not limited to: designing for interactive or immersive experiences including but not limited to XR, AR, VR, 2d/3d motion or web; experience design; data visualization; user interface design, user experience research, and testing processes; leading multidisciplinary testing or research teams across design, marketing, and engineering; and/or related design practices.
  • A minimum of two years of successful university-level teaching experience (or equivalent) with experience defining current, emerging, and experimental topics in design education.
  • Fluency in the tools, technologies, and software of contemporary design production and instruction;
  • Experience with socially-engaged design processes;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills as evidenced through student work, teaching evaluations and/or professional recommendations.

 Salary commensurate with experience.

 Application Procedure

To be considered, please submit an online application (position # F002327) at and upload:

  1. Letter of interest
  2. CV;
  3. Statement of creative and/or research interests;
  4. Portfolio of recent work (PDF or website). Links to external sites are accepted. Please clearly include identifying and descriptive information.
  5. Names and contact information of at least three references.
  6. For applicants interested in consideration at the Associate level, please demonstrate your capacity for successful leadership in the form of a statement or CV of service (demonstrating experience in areas such as Team Lead, Area Coordinator, Director of Undergraduate or Graduate Studies, Department Chair, Program Director, or related roles) 

Second round applicants will be contacted for supplementary materials, including:

  1. Additional work examples or support materials;
  2. Statement of teaching philosophy;
  3. Documentation of teaching (student work; example syllabi).

Review of applications will begin on January 20, 2024 and will continue until the position is filled. Only complete applications will be considered. For questions, please contact

The George Washington University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer committed to maintaining a non-discriminatory, diverse work environment. The university does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, familial status, genetic information, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law in any of its programs or activities.

Employment offers are contingent on the satisfactory outcome of a standard background screening.

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