The Life of an Adjunct Instructor

Jim Harger, Adjunct InstructorWelcome to my blog! On this blog, I will share some of the things that come up in my day-to-day activities as an adjunct instructor. I might also share other things occurring in my life that impact my teaching.

I do not plan to get into the philosophy of teaching or different educational theories; I will leave that up to Beth as she contributes to our podcasts and other resources. My purpose is to share some of my experiences with the hope of inspiring you to keep on teaching. If you are not currently teaching as an adjunct, perhaps this will help you gain some insight into what it is like to teach part-time as an adjunct instructor. So with that, here is my blog…

Are You Part of the Problem or the Solution?

There has been a lot of articles lately about how an online education does not stand up to the quality of a traditional education. The first thing that came to my mind was a question: Am I part of the problem? Or am I part of the solution?

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Do Online Instructors Get Time Off?

It’s Sunday morning. Is it wrong that I want to check my email? Beth and I do our best to unplug from work on Sundays. We typically work five-and-a-half days a week, and sometimes six. So we make a conscious effort to take time off on Sunday to relax and do something else besides work. Even so, I am often tempted to check my email.

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I am Proud to Teach Online Classes

I am always meeting new people and striking up a conversation, and it always comes to “What do you do for a living?” When I answer that I teach online as an adjunct instructor at a couple of different universities, the next question is, “Oh, do you teach at the local university?” “No” I reply, “I teach online classes.” I often get the response of “Oh, I could never do that. I have to be in a classroom.” Or worse, sometimes I get a different reaction.

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What is your name and what class are you in?

I had no idea who the student was or what class he was in. I searched through the grading rosters of my courses looking for his name but did not find it. So, part of my response to him was to ask him to tell me what class he is in because I could not find his name on my roster.

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I Hate to Post a Failing Grade

As I carefully composed my grading comments and email explaining why I posted a zero for the assignment, I kept asking myself what could I have done to prevent this. I looked back on their previous work, some of which was in preparation for the final assignment, and in both cases, the draft submitted the week prior was very sketchy and lacked detail.

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