Lecturer Affairs addresses UW Tacoma issues pertaining to the growth, sustainability and labor equity questions surrounding contingent faculty within the University of Washington and the effects these issues have on student outcomes. Contingent faculty, as defined by the AAUP, "includes both part- and full-time faculty who are appointed off the tenure track. The term calls attention to the tenuous relationship between academic institutions and the part- and full-time non-tenure-track faculty members who teach in them." (http://www.aaup.org/AAUP/pubsres/policydocs/contents/conting-stmt.htm).On our campus "contingent faculty" typically means part-time, full-time and senior lecturers who hold, respectively, term-to-term, yearly or three-year contracts. In 2011-2012 UW Tacoma lecturers taught over 65% of lower division undergraduate courses.
In Fall 2012 the UW Tacoma Executive Council charged Faculty Assembly to address lecturer issues and their relationship to student outcomes on campus and an ad hoc Lecturer Affairs Committee was formed.The committee was disbanded for academic year 2014-2015 and was reinstated in Fall 2015 with the following membership. A call for volunteers was put out. Lecturer Affairs serves as a sub-committee of Faculty Affairs.
- Co-Chair: Jeremy Davis, Lecturer, School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences
- Co-Chair: LeAnne Laux-Bachand, Lecturer, School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences
- Alex Miller, School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences
- Heather Heinz, School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences
- Gregory Lund, Urban Studies
To ensure that our students have the best teachers possible, and that all those teachers are provided the respect, support and stability necessary to achieve UW Tacoma's mission for excellence, innovation and vision. As teaching faculty we strive to help students achieve their learning goals, improve student retention and increase student graduation rates. Current research, however, reveals that the growing reliance on contingent faculty has negative repercussions for students--not because contingent faculty members are poor teachers but because contingent employment precludes teaching excellence.
- Educate UW Tacoma administration, faculty and the campus community as a whole about national trends in higher education related to the growth of contingent faculty.
- Investigate the existing processes of review and evaluation of part-time, full-time and senior lecturers and make recommendations.
- Investigate mechanisms, policies and practices that can create a supportive environment and provide part-time, full-time and senior lecturers with resources to enhance their teaching excellence and job security.
- Develop a set of criteria for part-time, full-time and senior lecturers regarding contract renewal, promotion schemes and issues surrounding the academic freedom of non-tenured faculty to enhance teaching excellence.
- Make recommendations to faculty and administration that will create a more engaged and committed faculty to benefit our students and the campus community as a whole.
Faculty Assembly Spring Quarterly Meeting: 4/22/16
This meeting included a Lecturer Panel Presentation and then table discussions around faculty workload and composition:
In a 2011-12 survey UW Tacoma lecturers identified their top requests:
- Improving over-all job security to improve teaching for student success
- Ability for promotion
- Better salary
- Multi-year contracts indicating commitment from UW Tacoma
- Treatment and respect equal to that of tenured and tenure-track faculty
- Support for and recognition of research
- Mentoring and support from tenure-track faculty
- Clear recognition of accomplishments from administration
Faculty Discussion Forums
- Hiring and Conversion: https://catalyst.uw.edu/gopost/board/libisun/32198/
- Lecturer Evaluations: https://catalyst.uw.edu/gopost/board/libisun/32197/
- Part-time Lecturers' Center: https://catalyst.uw.edu/gopost/board/libisun/32126/
UW Tacoma faculty consists of:
- 41 contingent faculty full-time (including senior) lecturers
- 56 contingent faculty part-time lecturers
- 121 assistant, associate, and full Professors
In other words: 97 part-time, full-time and senior lecturers to 121 tenure-track or tenured faculty
Who is teaching UW Tacoma courses?
- Lecturers taught over 65% of lower division courses
- Lecturers taught about 45% of upper division courses
- Part-time lecturers alone teach about 20% of courses
In a 2012 survey 45% of lecturers reported they had been hired with only two months (or less) to prepare their courses.
What about on other campuses?
- Recent statistics from UW Bothell and UW Seattle indicated their numbers of contingent faculty are growing.
- These statistics reflect national trends in higher education as reported by the AAUP.
The "Report on the FCWA survey of non-ladder UW faculty" by The UW Faculty Council on Women in Academestates that "the majority of non-ladder faculty positions are held by women, and non-ladder faculty are 50% more likely to be female thanare ladder faculty (56% vs. 37%). In a period of financial exigency, this can create a gendered at-risk population." http://www.tacoma.uw.edu/sites/default/files/nlf_survey_fullreport.pdf
- New Faculty Majority (NFM); The NFM's mission is to provide education and advocacy in higher education specifically in relation to the growth of contingent faculty.
- "Selected References on Contingent Faculty and Student Success," Compiled by John W. Curtis, Director of Research and Public Policy, American Association of University Professors (AAUP), January 2010.
- The Delphi Project on The Changing Faculty and Student Success: The project's aims include research, education and problem-solving on issues related to the changing faculty mix and student success.
- Campaign for the Future of Higher Education (CFHE): The CFHE is a national grassroots program to ensure affordable quality higher education.
- American Association of University Professors (AAUP): The AAUP's mission is to maintain high standards of academic freedom, shared governance and professionalism in higher education.
- Coalition on the Academic Workforce (CAW): CAW is a group of higher education and disciplinary associations and faculty organizations focused on issues surrounding faculty working conditions and their effects on campus communities.
- The Chronicle of Higher Education: The Chronicle is the leading news journal in the academic world.
- Inside Higher Ed: Inside Higher Ed is a daily online publication focused on higher education.
- "Who is Professor Staff: And how can this person teach so many classes?" at TheFutureOfHigherEd.org
- "Dean's Ideas About Hiring Adjuncts Differ From Reality, Survey Finds" at Chronicle.com
- "Organizing for Adjuncts" at InsideHigherEd.Com
- "Non-Tenure-Track Faculty on our Campus" at USCorssier.org
- "A Portrait of Part-Time Faculty Members" at AcademicWorkForce.org
In the Media
- "The Imperative for Change: Fostering Understanding of the Necessity of Changing Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Policies and Practices"From the Delphi Project on the Changing Faculty and Student: http://www.uscrossier.org/pullias/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/IMPERATIVE-FOR-CHANGE_WEB.pdf
- "Academic Workforce Summary Data" The MLA provides "historic information about staffing patterns." The information comes from 1995 and 2009 surveys conducted by the US Department of Education's Integrated Postsecondary Education System (IPEDS). http://www.mla.org/acad_work_data?id=377564
- "Contingent Appointments and the Academic Profession" http://www.aaup.org/report/contingent-appointments-and-academic-profession