• December 18, 2014

Highlights From The Chronicle's Survey of Chicago-Area Adjuncts

We gathered responses from 625 part-time adjunct faculty members in the Chicago area about their working conditions and pay, through a survey conducted from April to July. Here are some of their answers.

What is the highest degree you have attained?
Master's 56%
Ph.D. 24%
Bachelor's 6%
Other terminal degree (e.g., M.B.A., J.D.) 14%
At how many institutions did you teach as a part-time adjunct during the 2008-9 academic year, including last summer?
1 67%
2 24%
3 6%
4 2%
5 or more 1%
Which type of class did you teach most often?
Introductory classes 33%
Courses in the major 27%
Advanced courses 21%
Remedial courses 5%
A mix of all in equal parts 11%
Did not answer 3%
Estimate your total income from your part-time adjunct teaching:
More than $20,000 18%
$15,100 to $20,000 13%
$10,100 to $15,000 16%
$6,100 to $10,000 21%
$3,100 to $6,000 16%
$3,000 or less 14%
Did not answer 2%
What is the primary reason you work as a part-time adjunct?
Prefer part-time work 32%
Cannot find full-time teaching job 30%
Already have full-time job 21%
Need part-time work to fit with demands of family life 12%
Did not answer 5%
Did the institution(s) where you taught provide you: Almost always Sometimes Never Don't know
Offices 41% 26% 32% 2%
Money for travel to conferences 6% 13% 66% 16%
Professional development and training 30% 38% 25% 7%
Support services like secretarial help 31% 34% 31% 4%
As a part-time adjunct, did you: Almost always Sometimes Never  
Help develop courses in your department 14% 31% 55%  
Serve on faculty committees 6% 17% 77%  
Attend faculty departmental meetings 15% 33% 52%  
On average, how many hours per week, per class, were you expected to spend advising students outside of class?
None 29%
Up to 2 hours 37%
Between 2 and 4 hours 16%
More than 4 hours 6%
Don't know 11%
Do you pursue your own research and writing?
Almost always 34%
Sometimes 38%
Never 28%
Considering all aspects of working as a part-time adjunct, are you:
Very satisfied 17%
Satisfied 51%
Unsatisfied 26%
Very unsatisfied 5%
Note: All questions referred to the period covered by the summer of 2008 and the 2008-9 academic year. Adjuncts were invited to take the survey only if they had worked as part-time adjuncts between June 2008 and the date they received the survey invitation this spring. Percentages are rounded and so may not add to 100 percent.
Source: Chronicle reporting

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