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Adjuncts lack support

Non-tenure-track faculty members don't get enough mentoring or professional development.

Three-quarters of US academic institutions polled in a survey reported increasing their numbers of full-time non-tenure-track — or adjunct — faculty members in the past decade. More than one-third have “significantly increased” hiring of part-time adjuncts in the same period, finds Values, Practices and Faculty Hiring Decisions of Academic Leaders, a study that will be published in early 2013 in the journal Liberal Education. However, the paper reports that just 58% of the 157 responding institutions offer structured mentoring to full-time adjunct faculty members, and only 42% provide professional-development opportunities such as workshops on writing grant applications and managing grant budgets. Adrianna Kezar, co-author of the study and an associate professor of higher education at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, says that early-career researchers interviewing for adjunct positions should negotiate for professional-development support and mentoring, which help to make candidates indispensable at universities and may confer an advantage on those who attempt to make the jump to a tenure-track post.

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Adjuncts lack support. Nature 491, 786 (2012).

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