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You get what you pay for

October 16, 2006

Others will, no doubt, provide more to the discussion than I (Dean at a CC, perhaps), but today’s InsideHigherEd had an article reviewing an upcoming study where Dan Jacoby will argue that too any adjuncts spoil the graduation pie. And he is, even without reading it, right.

Throwing aside all illusions of scientific rigorousness, I appeal to my own, long history as an adjunct and say that, even when I truly, really, want to, I won’t be able to help my students to the level I could if I if I were fully employed. The reasons are legion:

* no office means no phone–and e-mail can be notoriously misunderstood.

* no office means no office hours (I did allow myself some time outside of class, but with the meter running–parking, kids at home, some semblance of a life–that lasted about as long my student’s interest)

* no depth of engagement within the college means that time spent outside of class or helping students is purely mission work. Not to say that most adjuncts don’t have a large sense of mission (why else would we be doing it?), but institutions, especially for-profit (and which of them, really, are not for-profit), shouldn’t rely on the charity of instructors for student aid and retention.

And I could go on guessing what Jacoby’s report will say, but, alas, I have a full time job to attend and grading that is due tonight.

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One Comment
  1. Rebel Girl permalink
    October 17, 2006 5:40 pm

    thanks for this – I am sending it out to the adjuncts in my department -and my dean.

    and now – back to paper grading…

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