Teacher, researcher, student
Adjunct Instructor (Current Employee) – Eugene, OR – March 25, 2015
I taught at the University of Oregon both as a graduate student and an adjunct instructor designing and teaching both brick-and-mortar as well as online courses. I created over seven different courses, designed a syllabus, prepared lectures, facilitated class discussions, met individually with students to discuss a plethora of concerns, graded student work promptly and regularly, and worked with a diverse group of colleagues in various contexts. The work environment, as I imagine is the case with any university setting, is fast-paced and high-stress, as everyone needs to juggle multiple tasks all the time (research, teaching, administrative work, committee work, etc). It's a very difficult time to be an adjunct instructor right now, as the pay is not good and the benefits are not guaranteed (I do not know from one year to the next how many class I'll be teaching, which directly affects my salary and benefits eligibility). While my colleagues were great and the work is meaningful, I would encourage anyone interested in pursuing a PhD to seriously read about the state of higher education before applying. Jobs are scarce, most labor is contingent, you may have no control over where you work, and the level of competition is very high, because there are magnitudes more PhDs granted each year than jobs created.