Faculty Positions at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute

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Important dates for faculty positions that begin Fall 2024:

  • Application opens: August 02, 2023
  • Teaching Track early review deadline: October 4, 2023
  • Application Closes: December 13, 2023.

The Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University invites applications from outstanding faculty candidates at all levels and tracks (tenure, research, systems, and teaching). We emphasize that we are interested in all areas of robotics, including computer science, mechanical, and electrical engineering approaches. In parallel, we are also looking for faculty who are eager to also participate in advanced research and development with engineering teams at the National Robotics Engineering Center. 

The Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University was established in 1979 to conduct basic and applied research in robotics technologies relevant to industrial and societal tasks. Seeking to combine the practical and the theoretical, the Robotics Institute has diversified its efforts and approaches to robotics science while retaining its original goal of realizing the potential of the robotics field. Faculty members hold primary appointments in the Institute and many have appointments in other academic units including Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Machine Learning, and Computer Science. 

Faculty Track Overviews 

Tenure Faculty 

Tenure faculty have a direct educational involvement with students inside and outside the classroom, including such activities as instruction, seminars, independent study project supervision advising undergraduate and graduate students, and supervision of graduate and postdoctoral research. Other educational activities include development of new or reformed courses, curricula, degree programs and training programs; educational publications, textbooks and other instructional materials; editorial work on professional journals. 

Tenure faculty also have an obligation to perform research activities that lead to the production of new knowledge; to increased problem-solving capabilities, including design and analysis. 

Every faculty member contributes by means of his or her expertise and the commitment of reasonable time and effort to the functioning and welfare of the university community, and of his or her academic unit in particular, through these activities. 

Faculty in this category are subject to the tenure procedure outlined in the Faculty Handbook. Titles included are Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor. Complete SCS policy on Criteria for Tenure Track Faculty is available. 

Research Faculty 

Research faculty are fully supported from sources external to the university; primary contributions most closely resemble regular faculty positions in regard to responsibility in designing, carrying out and managing research, including service as principal investigator when appropriate; are not required to teach, though many choose to do so; and are not subject to the tenure procedure, though performance is evaluated on a regular basis by department, school and university review committees. 

Research faculty have the same rights and responsibilities as tenure-track faculty. In particular, research faculty may supervise PhD students and be principal investigators on research proposals. The titles are Assistant Research Professor, Associate Research Professor and Research Professor. Complete SCS policy on Criteria for Research Track Faculty is available. 

Systems Faculty 

Systems faculty conduct and support research in basic and applied computer science, and advance the state of practice. The hallmark of these positions is creativity in the implementation of research ideas and problem solutions, and in the management of research programs. These positions, which range over computer science, computer architecture, communication, robotics, and related disciplines, are characterized by expertise, depth of knowledge, and sustained accomplishment in a particular specialization. Moreover, managerial positions are focal points of responsibility for formulating and achieving research goals that require the ability to lead and coordinate technical activities. All of these positions require persons of sufficiently high caliber and specific talent to justify the conferring of faculty status in order to attract and retain them, without requiring of them all the activities expected of regular faculty members. 

Primary contributions in this track may be other than original research, and therefore teaching or research faculty positions are not appropriate; it confers the rights and responsibilities of leadership associated with regular and research faculty, including service as co-principal investigator and co-supervision of research students where appropriate. Faculty in this track are evaluated on a regular basis by department and school review committees. Systems faculty are classified as Special Faculty, and receive staff benefits. Titles include Systems Scientist, Senior Systems Scientist, and Principal Systems Scientist. Complete SCS policy on Criteria for Systems Track appointments is available. 

Teaching Faculty

Teaching track faculty are responsible for teaching courses and enjoy the flexibility and opportunity to engage in broader aspects of our educational programs, including to pursue research, advise undergraduate students or teams, design or participate in outreach programs for students and teachers, create new courses, explore and experiment with new teaching methodologies, write course materials including books and online resources or other related interests. Teaching is usually in our core courses alongside other faculty, providing critical insight on pedagogy and maintaining overall learning outcomes, but some teaching track faculty also teach in specialized areas. 

Candidates should have a Ph.D. with deep expertise in robotics and a background of demonstrated excellence and dedication to teaching. Candidates must be prepared to teach extensive lecture courses at the advanced undergraduate and introductory/intermediate graduate-level and also be prepared to work with the existing faculty of the department to establish, improve, and standardize the curriculum. Applicants looking for a primarily research-based position or those who are looking to teach solely advanced courses are not a good fit for this position. Positions include Assistant Teaching Professor, Associate Teaching Professor, Teaching Professor. For more information about teaching faculty appointments at Carnegie Mellon, please read the https://www.cmu.edu/policies/faculty/appointments-teaching-track.html 

Review of teaching track applications will begin in the Fall, and we encourage candidates for the teaching track to submit their application by the early review deadline of October 4, 2023. 


Faculty candidates are expected to have a strong interest in research, outstanding academic credentials, and an earned doctoral degree. Candidates for tenure-track appointments should also have a record of excellence in graduate and undergraduate education. Further information about the Robotics Institute and its programs may be found at www.ri.cmu.edu. We particularly encourage applications from candidates who have a demonstrated track record in mentoring and nurturing female and under-represented minority students. 

Application Instructions 

For full consideration of your application, please submit your materials by no later than (Application Close Date: December 13, 2023). We encourage you to send an email indicating interest and noting the intended research area to the chair of the hiring committee, Aaron Steinfeld (ri_hiring@ri.cmu.edu) before submitting a formal application. 

Our application process will ask you for: 1) a cover letter, 2) a detailed curriculum vitae, 3) a teaching statement (required for tenure and teaching track positions. optional for research and systems track positions), 4) a research statement (required for research, tenure, and systems track positions. optional for teaching track positions), 5) the names and email addresses of three or more individuals who have been asked to provide letters of reference, 6) copies of 3 representative papers, and 7) a broader impact statement. 

For any questions regarding applications, please email ri_hiring@ri.cmu.edu. 

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