With Student Learning at Stake, Group Calls for Better Working Conditions for Adjuncts
By Audrey Williams
Academe needs a new model for the professoriate that better supports the growing number of instructors who are off the tenure track, the participants in a national project about the changing faculty have concluded.
The participants, who represent a cross-section of academe and its stakeholders, also said in a report being released this week that they need to align to gather data that will paint a clearer picture of higher education’s increasing reliance on contingent faculty.
A key reason for those two strategies to improve the jobs of contingent faculty members is that their poor working conditions may harm student learning, says the report, a “working document” produced by the Delphi Project on the Changing Faculty and Student Success.
The 49-page document, in part, details the challenges linked to the rising number of contingent faculty, who now make up about 70 percent of all instructors at the nation’s colleges and universities. But data that quantify the effects of this shift in the make-up of the faculty and the issues it creates aren’t readily available, the report says. Without hard numbers, campus policy makers may be unaware of the extent of the challenges they face.
- Adjunct survey paints bleak portrait (insidehighered.com)
- Freelance, part-time or fixed-term: Is this the future of academic careers? (guardian.co.uk)
- AAUP Proposes Giving Contingent Faculty a Bigger Role in College Governance (chronicle.com)