Last updated August, 2022.
Adjunct faculty are critical in the delivery of academic programs at Salisbury University. Adjunct faculty often bring professional experience from beyond the University that complements course and degree program content. Adjunct Faculty at Salisbury University are an important part of Campus Governance and are represented by the Adjunct Faculty Caucus.
Orientation sessions are held each semester for new and returning adjunct faculty. See the Adjunct Faculty FAQ for more information.
This policy is designed to govern practices at Salisbury University (“University”) related to search processes, appointments, contracts, and conditions of employment for adjunct faculty. The goal of the policy is to assure a high quality of instruction by individuals with appropriate credentials and experience and to provide a set of baseline policies that will lead to continuous improvement in the status of adjunct faculty at the University.
A. Adjunct Faculty. This policy applies only to adjunct faculty, defined as faculty members at the University who are:
- Employed to provide instructional services;
- Neither tenured nor eligible for tenure; and
- Appointed to teach specific courses and compensated on a course-by-course basis.
B. Policies for Salaried Part-Time, Non-Tenure Track Faculty. Part-Time, Non-Tenure Track (PTNTT) faculty who are appointed to salaried positions are not included as “Adjunct Faculty” for the purpose of this policy, and are covered instead by USM Policy II - 1.06 Policy on the Employment of Salaried Part-Time, Non-Tenure Track Instructional Faculty in The University System of Maryland.
III. Categories of Adjunct Faculty
For the purposes of this policy, adjunct faculty shall be designated as one of the following:
A. Adjunct Faculty I: All adjunct faculty, except those faculty members who meet the criteria for designation by the University as Adjunct Faculty II;
B. Adjunct Faculty II: Adjunct faculty members who are determined by the University to have a consistent record of high-quality instruction. Salisbury University shall consider granting Adjunct Faculty II status to adjunct faculty members who meet the following criteria:
- after establishing a record of teaching at least (36) credits at the University;
- supported by a series of high-level performance evaluations over the course of at least (36) credits at the University; and
- upon written request by the faculty member to the department chair/school director. The department chair/school director will provide a written recommendation to the dean on the granting of Adjunct II status.
Application Process for Adjunct II status:
- Faculty writes a letter to department chair/school director applying for adjunct II status (no more than 2 pages) Deadline for application: Sept 15 to be considered for promotion for Spring classes; Feb 15 to be considered for Fall classes.
- Department chair/school director may consider: teaching evaluations, evidence of especially effective/innovative teaching; syllabi review;
- Department chair/school director or chair designee will conduct a minimum of 2 classroom observations (must have been observed within the last 2 years of application and may occur after application but before the recommendation is sent to the dean.)
- Department chair/school director will make a written recommendation to the dean (no more than one page).
- Dean will review recommendations and approve/disapprove by November 15 for spring classes; April 15 for Fall Classes.
IV. Recruitment and selection of adjunct faculty
A. Credentials. The University shall develop written standards for the academic degrees or professional certifications and professional experience required for appointment as adjunct faculty. These standards may vary depending on the level of courses to be taught.
B. Selection Procedures. The Provost will assure that each department or unit has in place written procedures for selecting adjunct faculty. These procedures shall include verification of credentials, and shall reflect the commitment of the University and the University System of Maryland to equal opportunity and affirmative action.
V. Professional development and working conditions
A. Support for Teaching. The University shall provide each adjunct faculty member with the support it determines to be necessary for the execution of the appointee’s duties, which may include access through the University’s website or electronic resources, including the following:
- information on the department’s policies, requirements, and goals for each course, along with access to examples of past course syllabi (if available);
- official schedule of classes, including academic calendar and time frames of class meetings;
- assistance in the selection of textbook(s) for the course(s), ancillaries for the text(s), if these are not already available;
- a university email account along with access to on-campus computer facilities; and
- for adjunct faculty teaching face-to-face classes on campus:
- telephone or other voice access, as appropriate;
- necessary office supplies;
- copying services for course materials; and
- appropriate space for meeting with students during scheduled office hours.
B. Professional Development. Professional development opportunities for adjunct faculty shall be supported to the extent feasible, and may include invitations to departmental, college, University, and external faculty development events.
C. Performance Evaluation. The Provost will assure that each school has in place written procedures for evaluating adjunct faculty performance on a regular schedule, as required by BOR Policy II-1.20.
- Departments shall evaluate the teaching of adjunct faculty members in a manner that identifies high-level performance, according to departmental standards.
- Evaluations shall be kept on record in a personnel file and shall be consulted when decisions about promotion, compensation, and any subsequent contract are made.
VI. Appointment and Assignment
A. Appointment of Adjunct Faculty Members
1. Contracts/Letters of Appointment. Each adjunct faculty member, including both Adjunct Faculty I and Adjunct Faculty II, shall be provided a written contract or formal letter of appointment prior to the beginning of the assignment, which includes:
- position title,
- contract term,
- per-course compensation,
- description of the assignment,
- institution benefits, if any,
- performance-evaluation policies and procedures
- explanation of the implications of the cancellation of a course before its start date.
2. Provisions for Adjunct Faculty II.
- After designation as Adjunct Faculty II at the University, a faculty member:
- Shall receive a promotion increase of at least 10% of the minimum, annual per-course compensation for adjunct faculty at the University, consistent with State and USM budget policies.
- Shall be given priority consideration to the extent operationally feasible among adjunct faculty for future teaching assignments in the subjects for which the faculty member has had consistent instructional experience at the University.
- May be eligible for longer term appointments that assure the faculty member assignment to a fixed number of classes during the term of the appointment.
- The designation of a faculty member as Adjunct Faculty II will not prevent the faculty member from competition for or selection into a position as salaried PTNTT or other faculty.
3. Teaching assignments. The appointing department shall provide adjunct faculty with reasonable and adequate notice of projected teaching assignments prior to the start of classes.
- The University has the goal of providing such notice 45 days before the class start date to the extent feasible. Nothing in this section shall prevent a department from making an adjunct faculty teaching appointment on short notice based on changed circumstances in class enrollments, the availability of resources, or other factors.
- If the University cancels a fall or spring semester class to which an adjunct faculty member has been assigned less than 30 days before the class start date, and has been unable to offer the faculty member re-assignment to a comparable class, the University shall compensate the faculty member 10% of the payment amount specified in the contract or appointment letter for that class.
B. Notice of policies and procedures. Upon signing a contract or otherwise accepting an appointment, the adjunct faculty member will receive access, electronically or in print, to Salisbury University’s faculty handbook and policies or University System of Maryland policies, including those policies explaining the benefits for which the faculty member may be eligible.
VII. Compensation and Benefits
A. Compensation. Every effort should be made to make adjunct faculty compensation professionally appropriate and competitive to the extent allowed by available fiscal resources.
B. Benefits for Adjunct Faculty. The University may provide designated institutional benefits to adjunct faculty, in either or both of the Adjunct Faculty I or Adjunct Faculty II categories, at the discretion of the President, such as, but not limited to professional development support and access to University activities and facilities.
C. Sabbatical and Terminal Leave. Adjunct faculty members are ineligible for sabbatical leave or for terminal leave, regardless of length of service.
VIII. Due Process Protections
- Grievance Procedure. With the exception of those policies and procedures that relate to the appointment, rank and tenure of tenured and tenure-track faculty, adjunct faculty shall have available the same grievance procedure as all other faculty, consistent with the USM BOR Policy on Faculty Grievances, II-4.00.
- Process Related to the Termination of Adjunct Faculty. All adjunct faculty members shall have the opportunity for an informal hearing at the level of the appropriate dean’s office before termination of an appointment within the term of the faculty member’s contract. The University may remove the adjunct faculty member from the classroom, while continuing to pay the faculty member, pending the outcome of the hearing.
- Subsequent Appointments. The decision whether to re-appoint an adjunct faculty member after the term of the faculty member’s contract remains within the discretion of the University:
- Consistent with Section VI.A.2;
- Provided that the decision was not made for unlawful reasons or in retaliation for the faculty member’s exercise of grievance rights or shared governance activities.
IX. Participation in the Campus Community
A. Integration into Salisbury University Life. Adjunct faculty members shall be invited, to the extent feasible, to participate in the scholarly, intellectual, academic, and social life of the department, school, and the University.
B. Shared Governance Participation.
- The University shall provide opportunities for adjunct faculty to communicate their concerns to campus administration, provide advice in the development and implementation of policies and procedures related to adjunct faculty, and otherwise participate fully in shared governance through the formation of an Adjunct Faculty Caucus that will meet once each semester with campus administration. Representatives to the Adjunct Caucus will be elected by the adjunct faculty members.
- The Adjunct Caucus shall have the opportunity to meet with campus administration, including the Provost and the Vice-President for Administration and Finance once each semester.
- In recognition that adjunct faculty are compensated only for course-by-course instructional services, Salisbury University shall provide reimbursement for travel and other reasonable expenses consistent with University System of Maryland and institution travel policies to each adjunct faculty member who serves on the Adjunct Caucus.
- In recognition of time and effort by members of the Adjunct Faculty Caucus, each Caucus representative will receive $250 per semester and the chair shall receive $500 per semester for attending officially scheduled meetings of the Adjunct Faculty Caucus, Campus Consortium, and/or regarding other University business.
1. Purpose: The purpose of this policy is to define “Consulting Faculty” and to provide guidelines for recognizing consulting faculty status.
2. Definition: Consulting Faculty is an honorary title bestowed upon individuals who provide significant service contributions to University personnel, programs and activities but who are not employees of Salisbury University.
3. Selection Procedures: Consulting faculty are nominated by the Provost to the President of the University who makes final selections. The President notifies in writing individuals who are honored with the title of “Consulting Faculty.” There is no local residence requirement for eligibility.
4. Procedures for Recognizing Consulting Faculty: The names of Consulting Faculty are listed on the University’s website as appropriate to their contributions. Consulting faculty have the use of campus facilities and are welcome to attend campus activities as regular faculty.
Salisbury University Faculty Handbook ©