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All the World’s a Stage and Adjuncts, Merely Voters on It

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by Alissa Montalbano Flustered by official analysis and ad nauseam personal opinions of politics spewed about using purported facts, and even, god forbid, math, we English Majors usually sit by the sidelines and watch elections unfold with a mixture of boredom and confusion. In truth, we are waiting for whoever is speaking to stop so […]

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Call Me Adjunct

Life as divine comedy: In a single day we can hear from a community college student bemoaning Alice Walker’s choice of the color purple or a military student calling Hamlet a “pussy” for taking the entire play to kill Claudius. In that same day, we can read an essay from a university student detailing what, exactly, those Bronte sisters really did with that Moor.

While all higher educational institutions resemble each other on the surface, each one is bizarre in its own unique way. Universities, for example, make a big production of registering us, completing stacks of paperwork, background checks, fingerprinting, and the like. All this occurs while we carefully navigate Charybdis and Scylla to show a lively interest in the position without exhibiting the desire, or worse, the assumption, that we will be asked to return next semester.

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Prof. Behind ‘Social Media Buddha’ Brand Unmasked as Total ‘Biyatch’

“None of us in the sociology department want to sit by her at meetings or even enter the faculty coffee lounge when Linda is there because she is so negative,” said another colleague who feared going on record because Feaster serves on the tenure approval board. “Her term of endearment for students is ‘getter-in-the-wayers....’"

A little satire from our friends at The Cronk of Higher Education Sociology Professor Linda Feaster, a.k.a. “The Social Media Buddha” to fans across the world for her inspiring, warmhearted hourly posts was revealed by peers and students Tuesday as a heartless shrew. “Our department had no idea Linda had such a widespread reputation for […]

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Professor Embraces Flipped Classroom. “Twice As Much Time to Lecture!”

“I already have all my lectures memorized verbatim, from the twenty years I’ve given them. This semester, I’m going to videotape myself presenting each one. By next fall, I’ll be able to assign each week’s lectures as homework.”

from the Cronk of Higher Education Professor Rupert Villanueva returned from the recent Conference for Learning Engagement elated over a teaching model that many instructors presented about. “This is going to change everything!” said Villanueva about what is commonly called the “flipped classroom.” In order to maximize the time students spend discussing and analyzing information […]

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An Adjunct Professor Confesses…

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by John Brown [Imaginary dialogue based on Catholic confessions I willingly endured during my Catholic adolescence in the 1960s; doubtless the format/questions/vocabulary have much changed since that epoch.] Georgetown adjunct professor [GAP, yours truly]: Bless me Father, for I have sinned. Priest: I bless you, my son. What sins do you confess? GAP: I have […]

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Flash Forward—A University Without Professors

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by Toxteth Appleteat Editor’s note: This is satire, and hopefully not a predictor. For Immediate Release INTRODUCING FREEDOM UNIVERSITY Leading the way in for-profit education Freedom University (FU) is the first of its kind to offer an education dedicated to mass, fast-track degree completion programs, without the burden of faculty bogging down the process. FU […]

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A Little Raillery: Long-time Adjunct Instructor Lands Job as President of University

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Following a lengthy search for a new president, marked by the firing of two very expensive search firms, the Board of Trustees at City State University has announced an unparalleled decision in the appointment of Dr. Amy Wits, an adjunct instructor of communications, drawn from CSU’s own ranks. This is the first time in known […]

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A Little Raillery: An Open Letter to American Parents From the PT Prof Proletariat

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by Kathryn A. Higgins One day while I was waiting in line for my daily one free cup of coffee – a perquisite of my job of being an adjunct college professor — a colleague of mine surreptitiously stuffed this into my (enormous, paper-laden) book bag. Although the noise and confusion in the busy cafeteria […]

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Part-Time Paramours: Who’s Zooming Whom?

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By Kat Kiefer-Newman Over the holidays I went to a department Christmas party with a friend and fellow adjunct professor. This was a party thrown by the Chair of the Department at one of the colleges my friend (not I) teaches at, and both full-time and part-time faculty members mingled. I went with him because […]

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My Students’ Heinous Spelling Is Killing Me

by Kat Kiefer-Newman I have another sore throat, and the damp-rainy season here in Southern California has only just started. I’m actually quite healthy, overall, but because I’m in the classroom (closed, cramped, crowded) my immune system just can’t protect me. Think of one of Lady GaGa’s bodyguards trying to get her across the street […]

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From the Archive

  • ACT-UAW Local 7902: Golden Egg or San Andreas Fault?

      by Andrew Brownstein In April of last year, Solo Dowuona-Hammond raised his hand and made the motion for thousands of adjuncts at New York University to accept their first-ever contract with the administration. Though far from perfect, the contract brought immediate benefits: Some professor’s salaries jumped from $20 to $50 an hour; adjunct faculty […]

  • To Be or Not To Be (in a Unified Union Local)

    Ideally, union membership will benefit all members equally. It’s a simple system, in theory: faculty unionize, pay dues, and bargain collectively. Everyone benefits. In practice, however, particularly as the numbers of part-time faculty continue to rise, the mechanics of union representation have become more complicated, even politicized. Full-time faculty, in many instances, compete with part-time […]

  • Six Tips for Handling Grade Complaints

    by Peter Connor It’s a given—students are going to complain about the grades they receive. Also given, is your responsibility to handle such complaints. Generally speaking, this will go far better if you pre-establish your classroom protocols, put them in writing and discuss them on the first day of class. Include a page in your […]

  • Make Sure You Have a CV or Résumé That Travels Well

    by Mary Anne Thompson INTEREST AMONG SEASONED professionals in pursuing international careers has skyrocketed in recent years. Such interest has been enhanced by chronic personnel shortages in home markets that are causing foreign companies to search beyond their borders for talent. These candidates aren’t passively waiting to be hired by just any employer. They’re targeting […]

  • Ten Timesaving Tips for Part-Time Distance Learning Faculty

    by Steven N. Pyser, JD Many educational institutions are offering distance education as an instructional option. Job opportunities for adjunct faculty are said to be growing; yet, some faculty are reluctant to venture online because of concerns about perceived preparation and time requirements. These timesaving tips are grounded in sound educational practice and organized around […]

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