The position of full professor is a senior position in a university and is always a tenured position. This is the reason that just about all of the professors at this rank are older is they have been with the university for some time and have risen up through the academic ranks. In order to get hired for such a position you have to earn your status and start at the bottom. This means intensive study as you attain a Bachelor’s degree, a Master’s degree and a Ph.D. In addition you must be a published writer of scholarly writings in academic magazines. Some professors have written textbooks that are used as course materials or other books on topics related to their area of expertise.
There are several ranks that you have to work up through to become a full professor. You start off as a lecturer, then advance to assistant professor. You do have to on a track to tenure, which means you serve a probationary period of two contract terms totaling six years before you are deemed to be a permanent professor at the university. Then you advance to the rank of associate professor and then to being deemed a full professor. In the United States the average age of professors in this rank is 40 years of age. The pay structure for this position is also significantly higher than that of professors of a lower rank.
You can get hired as a full professor at a university different from the one you now work in. If you are already an associate professor and you see that there is an opening at another university in your faculty that will give you a promotion then you can apply for it. The ad for the position will state the areas of research that the selection committee is looking for although some ads state that the area of research is open to the interest of the applicants. When you submit your application for the job, you do have to submit the titles of your published works as well as a description of the research project you intend to carry out as part of your position. You do have to teach a full course load of at least four courses per term to both graduate and undergraduate students, conduct research and continue with scholarly writings.
One of the duties of a full professor is to serve on various committees for the faculty and the university as a whole. This will take up a lot of time, so if you apply for this job you should know beforehand that you do have to devote a lot of your time to serving the interests of the university, the other faculty members and the students. Student advising, curriculum development and development of new courses, are also responsibilities that come with this job. You are only responsible for teaching two terms of the academic year, which means you can decide to take a term off to vacation and tend to your own needs.