Contingent Faculty

The MLA Pulls No Punches

Academic Cultures: Professional Preparation and the Teaching Life. Sean P. Murphy, ed. New York: Modern Language Association, 2009.

Stabilizing Persons, Creating New Lines

At some of the fourteen campuses represented by the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF), there are a dozen or more tenure-track faculty who used to teach the same courses in the same departments but on contingent appointments.

The APSCUF contract features two unique contract provisions (11.G and 11.H) that permit the conversion of both persons and lines to the tenure track.

The Unhappy Experience of Contingent Faculty: The curious case of Boston University.

This article, like most of the others included in this issue, was submitted in response to the editor’s widely circulated call for papers that would present compelling stories about how different institutions have responded to the current financial crisis. It is not Academe’s policy to publish anonymous articles. However, it is an unfortunate commentary on the job insecurity and the limits on the academic freedom of contingent faculty in American higher education that the editor received several separate inquiries about the possibility of keeping the identity of contingent faculty authors confidential in order to avoid potential retaliation. Because the editor thought it was important to include at least one essay that would address the problems of contingent faculty in a time of economic crisis, he decided, in this particular case, to make an exception to the magazine’s editorial policy of not publishing anonymous articles.

 

As with all features published in Academe, the opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, not necessarily those of the Academe editor or of the AAUP. Comments on this article or any other article in this issue can be submitted online.

 

The Toll Road to Contingency

Off-Track Profs: Nontenured Teachers in Higher Education. John G. Cross and Edie N. Goldenberg. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2009.

Unemployment Compensation Initiative

The AAUP supports the National Unemployment Compensation Initiative, designed to help eligible contingent faculty obtain unemployment compensation between academic terms. 

East-West University Should Choose a New Direction

A few days after adjunct faculty filed a petition with the NLRB, the university “non-renewed” all of its fifty-plus adjunct faculty members.

Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments

Recommendations on stabilizing the faculty infrastructure by converting contingent faculty positions to the tenure track.

“Multiple Ways to Salvation”: Tenure and Teaching-Intensive Appointments

 A new report explains why teaching-intensive faculty should be hired and evaluated through the rigorous system of peer review known as the tenure system.

Access to Unemployment Benefits

More than half of U.S. faculty members now work in one or more part-time appointments, generally on a semester-by-semester basis. Many more, both full- and parttime non-tenure-track faculty members, hold renewable academic-year appointments. Those serving in contingent appointments often do not know until a semester actually begins whether they will have a job for that semester and do not know in May whether they can expect to be employed at the same institution in the fall. For these teachers, summer and winter breaks are periods of unemployment.

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