Sunday, April 26, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Gap widens for faculty at colleges, report finds

By Tamar Lewin

For the academic elite — tenured professors at private research universities — average pay this year is $167,118, while at public research universities such professors earn $123,393, according to the annual report by the American Association of University Professors.

After three years in which overall increases in full-time faculty pay lagged behind the rate of inflation, this year’s average increase, 1.7 percent, kept pace with consumer prices.

But the difficult economic climate of recent years is taking a serious toll on higher education, especially public institutions. As states cut back their support for public institutions, the gap between the pay scales at private and public universities is continuing to grow, the report found. Average pay for assistant professors at private colleges that award only bachelor’s degrees is $62,763, while public colleges paid $58,591.

And with stretched budgets and public pressure to keep costs down, many colleges and universities are cutting back on tenure and tenure-track jobs. According to the report, such positions now make up only 24 percent of the academic work force, with the bulk of the teaching load shifted to adjuncts, part-timers, graduate students and full-time professors not on the tenure track.

“Public colleges and universities, reeling from immediate and long-term cutbacks in their state funding, have sought to reduce spending on the back of their students, increasingly substituting lower-paid contingent faculty members for more fairly paid tenure-track faculty members,” the report said.

The concentration of contingent faculty “weakens the academic enterprise,” the report said.

“The problem is not the people who are in the part-time or nontenure positions, it’s the lack of support they get from their institutions,” said John Curtis, the director of research and policy at the association. “With so many contingent faculty, students may not be able to develop a relationship with their professors, who may have no office, no university email, and may not even be listed in the directory. There was a report titled ‘Who is Professor ‘Staff’ and How Can This Person Teach So Many Classes?’ which really sums it up.”

And because contingent faculty have no job security, he said, they can lose their job if they are critical of their institutions or stir controversy in the classroom.

Along with the data on full-time professors’ pay that the association collects from colleges and universities each year, this year’s report includes data from a Coalition on the Academic Workforce survey of more than 10,000 part-time faculty members, finding that their median pay per course in 2010 was $2,700. Generally, private nonprofit institutions paid more than public ones, and doctoral universities more than baccalaureate or community colleges — and for-profit colleges paid only half to two-thirds as much.

Terry Hartle, senior vice president of the American Council on Education, said that while the shift to contingent faculty was an inexorable fact of life, he was not convinced that it harmed the quality of education — and he added that it might even improve quality in some vocational programs. The trend is likely to continue, he said.

Economic pressures also account for the pay divide between public and private institutions, which Hartle said could undermine public universities’ ability to retain their best faculty members.

“The heart of any college or university is its human capital,” he said. “And if you’re a public university, particularly one aspiring to be a research university, you have to worry about losing your best faculty to institutions that can pay more.”

Comments

comments

New York Times News Service

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
     
    Davis team wins world robotics championship

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Nepal quake death toll exceeds 1,800

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

    Spring storm delivers late rain, snow to Northern California

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    At the Pond: Plenty of pleasures in our bioregion

    By Jean Jackman | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Rail-safety bill passes Senate committee

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Free Family Bike Clinic set Sunday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Pioneering organic chef presents her memoir Monday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Suspect in UCD assault arrested

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A4

    Dog park marks anniversary with cleanup

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Watch them in action

    By Julia Ann Easley | From Page: A5

    Stocks rise on tech earnings; Nasdaq adds to record

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A8

     
    Dodd speaks as part of public policy series

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

    We did it (together)!

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A10

     
    $2.72 million judgment ordered against Dollar Tree Stores

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    UCD hosts bike auction Saturday, May 2

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    Fly Fishers to hear about advanced streamer tactics on Tuesday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    Bicycle activist will speak Monday at Hall of Fame

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    .

    Forum

    Those texts still linger

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B6

     
    New ways of giving locally and beyond

    By Marion Franck | From Page: B6

     
    Study questions accuracy of tumor gene mapping

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A12

     
    Poker proceeds help youths

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

    Invest in water of the future

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

     
    Water, water everywhere?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

    Mayor’s Corner: A spirit of renewal permeates Davis

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

     
    More work to do for a safe Picnic Day

    By Our View | From Page: A12

    Anaheim, where The Force is with you

    By Sebastian Onate | From Page: A13 | Gallery

     
    .

    Sports

    Davis gets two baseball wins in two days

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1

     
    Grizzlies dominate young Blue Devils on Senior Night

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Energy, fan-friendly happenings highlight UCD spring football game

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Blue Devil golfers capture CAL Invitational title

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    UCD roundup: Aggies reach water polo semifinals

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

     
    Blue Devil swimmers are up to the challenge

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Babich brings the heat as DHS girls stick it to Oak Ridge

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B12 | Gallery

     
    DHS softball struggles continue against Sheldon

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B12 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    History comes alive in ‘The Sacramento Picture’

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    Yolo County real estate sales

    By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A7

     
    Big Italian food, sports bar to fill Little Prague

    By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A7 | Gallery

    Davis Roots hires new general manager

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    Comcast announces speed upgrade

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    .

    Obituaries

     
    Whitney Joy Engler

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

    Valente Forrest Dolcini

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, April 26, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: B8