Inside Higher Ed
December 16th, 2014
When it comes to first-year writing courses, how many sections are too many for one instructor to teach? Full-time, non-tenure-track faculty members at Arizona State University say five per semester, and they’re protesting their department’s plan to increase their teaching load to that number (up from four) each term, starting next fall. They say they’re worried the service work they’ll give up in exchange for the extra course won’t be taken up by tenure-line faculty, and that they won’t be able to give needy students the same level of attention.
In effect, the university has just increased instructors' teaching workload by 25 percent, without offering an extra dollar for the effort.
Faculty advocates agree that the planned course load is too much, and that it’s another example of an institution asking some of its most vulnerable faculty members to do more with less.
Arizona State, meanwhile, says the change is necessary to address a budget shortfall.