EducationHigher Education

Precarious Academic Employment and Material Goods Do Not Mix

This week is Fair Employment Week in Canada. It’s an annual event put on by the Canadian Association of University Teachers and their provincial counterparts to raise awareness of the precarious work conditions of adjunct employees. The week is usually marked by sad stories of the economic difficulties faced by …

Photograph of a piece of chalk resting on a dusty tray at the bottom of a blackboard.
FeaturedHigher Education

Syllabus Adjunct Clause

Hey there, Doubters! As I promised in the last edition of On the Market, here is a sample adjunct clause that can be inserted into any syllabus for courses taught by temporary faculty. Please keep in mind that since situations differ from school to school–and even from department to department–the following …

Empty lecture auditorium at UC Berkeley
Higher Education

On the Market VI: Excellence in Teaching and Student Evaluations

This year’s academic job application season is drawing to a close, and, as ever, I find the compilation of the last few packets to be tinged with the kind of grim urgency that accompanies the knowledge that all of the searches I applied to earlier in the year have already …

Melody Torcolacci file photo
FeaturedHigher EducationScience

Anti-vax “prof” ignites scandal at Queen’s U

This week the Principal and Provost of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario publicly acknowledged student complaints that an instructor in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies was promoting anti-vaccine materials in a basic health class. The instructor in question, Melody Torcolacci, is reported to have presented her Health 102 class …

Photo of Dr Pamela Gay at the USA Science and Engineering Festival
Critical ThinkingFeaturedFeminismHigher Education

Tenure and the Culture of Silence

Pamela Gay, currently an Assistant Research Professor at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, published a blog post this morning about how she regrets not publicly confronting a famous person who harassed her at a science fiction convention. There is bound to be a lot of discussion of this incident in the …

Charity Soup
EducationHigher Education

Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part II

*This is a continuation of my previous post Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part I. I have been commenting on the points that James Hoff has made in his response to being profiled in the New York Times. I have covered a couple of his points in my previous …

Critical ThinkingHigher EducationSecondary EducationUncategorized

Wondering about grades? Us, too. Also: adjuncts in the news, charter school walkouts, computer graded writing. It’s Required Reading 2-6-2014!

What’s in a grade? Does a high GPA from a prestigious university indicate  a moral and unthuglike character ?   Why bring it up? Speaking of grades, why the leap from D to F?  Shouldn’t you lose points for forgetting one of the most popular letters? Well, New Jersey really needs …

Charity Soup
EducationHigher EducationUncategorized

Charity Work: My Life as an Adjunct Part I

Every semester I give my students the opportunity to ask one question of me. I tell them they can ask me anything that is not too terribly personal but I welcome questions giving them career advice, off topic subjects that we cannot cover in class, or just general what classes …

Higher EducationPedagogyPop Quiz

Pop Quiz: How would you change the system?

Hey everybody! Excuse the late post–I’m sure you’re all familiar with December craziness. As I was reading this article by Jeffrey J. Williams in the Chronicle of Higher Education the other day, I got to thinking about the way we’ve structured our educational system. For those who haven’t read the …

A shelf full of books.
Required Readings

Required Readings, 21 November 2013 – Adjunct Faculty Edition!

Good morning, teachers and learners! Since a larger conversation opened up this week due to a Slate piece on Duquesne University adjunct Margaret Mary Vojtko, I thought I would make today’s set of required readings about the people and the plight of the contingent faculty. Want to Unionize Your Adjuncts? First …