What can I expect as an adjunct?

Nationally, adjuncts teach 30-50% of all credit courses. At community colleges, adjuncts compose about 60% of all faculty (Gappa and Leslie, 1993).

But “The Effects of Salary” says:

Adjunct faculty make up approximately sixty-five percent of all faculty teaching at the college level…

At CC1, the adjuncts are 75% of the faculty. This is with 53,000 students (Student Served Report) in the system.

“Student Served Report Including Flex Entry.” Lone Star College System. Summer 2008. 7 August 2008 .


Within a single school adjunct pay can vary based on “market realities” of the hiring pool
from Adjunct Pay Discrepancies Justified.

Sadowski, Laura. “Adjunct Pay Discrepancies Justified.” Gonganza Bulletin Online. 16 November 2001. 7 August 2008 .

Why adjuncts are paid so little: They are an interchangeable commodity. Any one of them will do.

Analysis of Adjunct Instructor Pay v. Full-time at Colorado Community Colleges, very clear
job schedule


Schools allow different numbers of courses per adjunct. For a long time CC1 only allowed five courses per regular school year. Now an adjunct can teach six.

CC2 has an adjunct choice that gives an adjunct five classes (full-time load) and requires office hours. This is not a lead in to full-time work but IS full-time work for part-time pay. It’s a wonder they’ve ever hired anyone with this option.

Texas now allows adjuncts to purchase insurance if they have taught for a year and continue teaching at least four courses a year. The cost, in my system, is about $700 a month for me and two minor children. If I teach five classes a year, I take home about $600.


A poll at Adjunct Nation says that the vast majority of adjuncts spend 1 hour or more for each class meeting in preparation. (297 to 75 [for 30 minutes] or 32 [for 15 minutes].)

summer classes

Faculty around here all teach first summer session but don’t want the miniterm (three weeks in May) because it doesn’t count toward their 10.5 contract. So, if you are up for teaching a miniterm, and your schedule allows for it, you often can. Otherwise, you’re looking at Summer II, a long break at the beginning of the summer and a week at the end.

involvement with the department

involvement with the college

Continuing education– learning expectations: workshops, Blackboard, etc

Document the completion of three (3) hours per semester of professional development activities related to the discipline area and student learning

Attend such meetings and workshops as may be necessary to obtain or renew certification or essential licensure requirements

from Expectations of Adjunct Faculty Members

Jaschik’s article discusses a continuing ed system in which adjuncts who complete 60 hours of professional development get a pay jump of $33 per credit hour for three years. (That’s almost double my pay at CC1 or CC2.) For each additional 60 hours of professional development within that three years, their pay jump is continued for another three. AND their title changes from adjunct to “associate faculty.”

accreditation, certification

Works Cited
Gappa, J.M., and Leslie, D.W. The invisible faculty: Improving the status of part-timers in higher education. San Francisco : Jossey-Bass, 1993.

Types of adjuncts:

Why people adjunct:

One doesn’t do it for the money, but for one’s vita! I did it for two years and it added great stuff to my vita, which did help me get a real job.

from “Adjunct Salary–How Much?”

“Adjunct Salary–How Much?” Chronicle Forums. 27 September 2002. 7 August 2008 .

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