Another element of the broader issues addressed in Aaron’s post is the disparity in the nature of adjuncting–of teaching part-time–in different disciplines and in covering different levels of courses.
The adjunct faculty in professional schools very likely have full-time employment outside of the university. The same is true for the great majority of adjunct faculty who teach upper-level or graduate courses in disciplines such as business, engineering, and education, in particular educational leadership.
But the majority of the adjunct faculty who teach part-time in the humanities and the social sciences and who cover sections of core or general-education courses have no employment outside of the university and are trying to cobble together incomes from two to four part-time positions. The average number of institutions at which they teach has clearly edged upward as most institutions have limited the number of courses available to individual adjuncts in order to avoid providing…
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