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The AAUP office reopened on September 7, 2021. Contact information for all staff, including those working remotely or on a hybrid schedule, is available here

 

 

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The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2021-22

This year’s Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession documents the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in a year when the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 7.0 percent, the largest December-to-December percentage increase since 1981. The report documents the economic status for not only full-time faculty members but also part-time adjunct faculty members paid on a per-course-section basis—and faculty members on contingent appointments in general. It also includes special sections on the academic labor force and key gender equity indicators, with an eye toward documenting changes that have occurred since the 2019–20 academic year, when the COVID-19 pandemic began.

The 2022 AAUP Survey of Tenure Practices

The 2022 AAUP Survey of Tenure Practices, the first survey of its kind since 2004, offers a snapshot of prevailing tenure practices and policies at four-year institutions with tenure systems. Among the findings, the survey found that tenure is highly prevalent throughout US higher education, with 87 percent of four-year institutions that have a Carnegie Classification of bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral institution reporting having a tenure system.

Governance, Academic Freedom, and Institutional Racism in the University of North Carolina System

This report details an investigation of governance, academic free­dom, and institutional racism in the University of North Carolina system. The report considers the influence of the gerrymandered North Carolina state legislature on the systemwide board of governors and campus boards of trustees and how political pressure has obstructed meaningful faculty participation in the governance of the UNC system. It also assesses how the environment for academic freedom in the UNC system has been weakened by the politiciza­tion and increased centralization of system governance and by mounting political interference in university policy. Finally, the report focuses on key issues of institutional racism within UNC: the racial climate, institutional inequities, and retention of faculty of color. It demonstrates how the areas of governance, institutional racism, and academic freedom overlap significantly.

Academic Freedom and Tenure: Linfield University (Oregon)

The report of the investigating committee concerns the dismissal of a tenured professor and endowed chair at Linfield University in Oregon. The report finds that Linfield’s administration violated the 1940 Statement and the institution’s own regulations when it dismissed the professor, Daniel Pollack-Pelzner, without demonstrating adequate cause for its action before an elected faculty hearing body. The investigating committee also found that the administration violated Pollack-Pelzner’s academic freedom to participate in institutional governance without retaliation. General conditions for academic freedom and shared governance at Linfield University, the report states, are “deplorable.”

Legislative Threats to Academic Freedom: Redefinitions of Antisemitism and Racism

This statement by the AAUP's Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure addresses recent partisan efforts in state legislatures to restrict teaching that critically examines the history and policies of the state of Israel and the United States. The statement notes that conservative politicians have justified restrictive legislation on these two topics under the guise of protecting students from harm and urges the defeat of these legislative initiatives and others of their kind in order to protect the academic freedom that is vital to the preservation of democracy. 

 

Academic Freedom and Tenure: University System of Georgia

This report, prepared by the Association’s staff, concerns the action taken on October 13, 2021, by the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia to remove the procedural protections of tenure from the system’s post-tenure review policy.

On Academic Freedom and Transphobia

The statement that follows was prepared in 2018 and approved in 2019 by the Association’s Committee on Gender and Sexuality in the Academic Profession (formerly the Committee on Women in the Academic Profession) and approved by Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure in 2021. It was adopted by the Association’s Council in 2021.

The 2021 AAUP Shared Governance Survey: Findings on Faculty Roles by Decision-Making Areas

The 2021 AAUP Shared Governance Survey, the first such survey in two decades and the subject of this report, included questions about the level of faculty authority in twenty-nine areas. The survey provides a new snapshot comparing findings from previous years and gauging the impact of developments that have occurred in the intervening years. To achieve the latter objective, this year’s survey includes such topics as policies on intellectual property rights and modes of course delivery.

The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2020-21

This year’s Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession outlines how years of unstable funding, combined with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, have created an existential threat to shared governance and academic freedom in higher education that severely weakens our nation’s ability to effectively educate our communities. The report presents findings from three related studies conducted by the AAUP: the AAUP’s annual Faculty Compensation Survey, a follow-up COVID-19 survey, and secondary data analyses of national employment and finance data.

Survey Data on the Impact of the Pandemic on Shared Governance

Over the course of the past year, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected higher education, including the conduct of shared governance, profoundly. In January and February 2021, the AAUP’s research department conducted a national shared governance survey of senate chairs and faculty governance leaders at four-year institutions—the first national survey about shared governance in two decades. One part of the questionnaire concerned the impact of the pandemic on shared governance, which is the focus of this report.

COVID-19 and Academic Governance

This report details an investigation of the crisis in academic governance that has occurred in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, with a focus on eight institutions: Canisius College (NY), Illinois Wesleyan University, Keuka College (NY), Marian University (WI), Medaille College (NY), National University (CA), University of Akron, and Wittenberg University (OH). AAUP governance investigations are conducted under the aegis of the Association’s standing Committee on College and University Governance by AAUP members who have had no previous involvement in the cases under investigation. The investigating committee is charged with independently determining the relevant facts and the positions of the principal parties before reaching its findings.

On Campus Police Forces

This report of the Campus Police Working Group addresses the role of police on campus, the appropriateness of higher education institutions’ having their own police forces, the impact of systemic racism on campus policing, and changes needed to ensure that campuses are safe and welcoming for diverse peoples, especially those who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color.

Policies on Academic Freedom, Dismissal for Cause, Financial Exigency, and Program Discontinuance

This report provides a statistical analysis of the presence of AAUP-recommended policies on academic freedom, dismissal for cause, financial exigency, and program discontinuance in faculty handbooks and collective bargaining agreements. In the best of times, analysis of their prevalence could usefully inform the work of AAUP chapters, faculty governance bodies, and higher education unions, but given the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on campuses around the coun­try, these data are now even more important to the advancement of the AAUP’s principles and policies. Statistical evidence of the widespread adoption of AAUP policy statements in faculty handbooks and contracts can reinforce the argument that institutional practices that depart from AAUP-supported standards are outside of the mainstream. Conversely, informa­tion about which institutional policies more frequently fall short of Association-recommended policies can be useful for faculty members engaged in reviewing regulations or contracts.

The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2019-20

This year’s Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession summarizes results from the 2019–20 Faculty Compensation Survey, which collected data from 928 colleges and universities across the United States, including community colleges, small liberal arts colleges, and major research universities. The survey covered almost 380,000 full-time and more than 96,000 part-time faculty members, as well as senior administrators at nearly 600 institutions. Data collection began in December 2019 and concluded in February 2020, just as the first cases of COVID-19 were being reported in the United States.

Academic Freedom and Tenure: Pacific Lutheran University (Washington)

This report, prepared by the Association’s staff, concerns the case of Dr. Jane Harty, a part-time faculty member with forty years of service in the Department of Music at Pacific Lutheran University. In November 2018, Dr. Harty was suspended from her teaching responsibilities for the remainder of her one-year contract and informed that she would not be reappointed for the following academic year. The stated reason for the action was that she had violated a directive issued by her department chair that prohibited faculty members from accepting payment from PLU students for private lessons given independently of the university. The summary nature of the action, the relatively minor character of the infraction, and the fact that Dr. Harty’s longtime advocacy for the rights of faculty members on contingent appointments had brought her into repeated conflict with her administrative superiors suggested that the administration had imposed the suspension for reasons that implicated principles of academic freedom.

In Defense of Knowledge and Higher Education

This statement—adopted by the AAUP's Council and endorsed by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, PEN America, and other organizations—advances an impassioned argument for the importance of expert knowledge and the institutions of higher education that produce and transmit it. Addressing an ongoing movement in the United States to attack the disciplines and institutions of higher education, the statement defends the critical role these institutions perform in producing the knowledge that sustains American democracy, especially in this moment of intense global instability.

The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2018-19

This year’s annual report provides an overview of the results of the 2018–19 AAUP Faculty Compensation Survey, which compiled data on more than 380,000 full-time faculty members at 952 colleges and universities, as well as improved data on pay and benefits for more than 64,000 part-time faculty members at more than 360 institutions. In addition, this year’s report examines the changes in full-time faculty salaries and appointment types, with a particular focus on progress toward gender equity, in the ten years since the Great Recession. Finally, the report explores some of the improved data on part-time faculty pay.

College and University Governance: Vermont Law School

This report concerns issues of academic governance stemming from the actions taken in spring 2018 by the administration of the Vermont Law School to “restructure” the law school’s faculty by lowering salaries, reducing the number of full-time positions, and eliminating the tenured status of fourteen of the nineteen tenured faculty members without meaning­fully involving the faculty in the decision-making process.

College and University Governance: Maricopa Community Colleges (Arizona)

This report concerns issues of academic governance stemming from the actions of the governing board of the Maricopa County Community College District to terminate the “meet-and-confer” provision of the residential faculty policies manual and to mandate the later repeal of the entire manual. For four decades, the faculty and administration had utilized the meet-and-confer process as a mechanism for establishing institutional policies related to faculty matters and for making recommendations to the board on salary and budgetary matters. The residential faculty policies manual contains policies and procedures relating to the full-time faculty, including provisions defining the faculty’s participation in governance.

Academic Freedom and Tenure: Nunez Community College (Louisiana)

This report concerns actions taken in spring 2018 by the administration of Nunez Community College to terminate the services of Professor Richard Schmitt following his twenty-second year on the faculty. These actions were taken in apparent violation of his academic freedom and without affordance of the protections of academic due process to which he was entitled as the result of having obtained de facto tenure at the institution through length of full-time service.

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