uwrfvoice.com
Thursday, October 1, 2020 Latest PDF issue  |  Give to the Voice  |  Search

Faculty proposes possible pay increase for summer, J-Term

October 28, 2010

Faculty may have a greater incentive to teach summer and J-Term courses due to a proposal the Faculty Compensation Committee has been working on.

If the proposal is approved, faculty would see an increase in pay for teaching summer and J-Term courses, said Director of Outreach Katrina Larsen. Faculty would be paid based on a percentage of tuition generated from the course, added Larsen.

The current administration policy ­— referred to as AP 43 — determines how much faculty members are paid for teaching summer and J-Term courses. The pay is dependent upon the number of students enrolled in a particular class. Faculty teaching a three-credit undergraduate course with 20 students enrolled would be paid around $4,290, according to AP 43.

The current policy has a salary plateau from 18 to 25 students, which means a faculty member is paid $4,290 even though they have additional students. If a course has less than 18 students, the minimum class size, faculty are paid a fraction of $4,290.

Most summer and J-Term classes do not have 18 students enrolled, so many faculty members are paid less than $4,290, said Larsen. Also, AP 43 pay rate is generally much lower than what the average faculty members receive for their academic year contract, added Larsen.

If the policy is approved, a full Professor would see a 25 percent pay increase for teaching a three-credit undergraduate course with 20 students enrolled, said Stephen Olsen, chair of the compensation committee and head of the marketing communications program.

AP 43 was created in 2003 during a budget crunch and was never brought before the Faculty Senate, and was a move out of desperation, said Olsen.  As a need to tighten up the budget, the policy reduced the pay faculty earned for teaching summer and J-Term courses. Prior to 2003, faculty was paid up to two-ninths of their nine-month academic year salary, said Olsen.

This was a severe cut in pay and many faculty members decided not to teach summer and J-Term courses, said History Professor Betty Bergland.

If the proposed policy is approved then faculty may teach more summer and J-Term courses.

“One of the primary objectives is to hopefully, over time, create a more robust summer session with a greater mix of course offerings and increased student enrollment, which would benefit students, faculty and the campus as a whole,” said Biology Professor and primary writer of the new proposal Brad Mogen.

The new proposal also has the chance to be self-sustaining, said Olsen.

“If the proposal is approved and there is an increase in student enrollment during the summer and J-Term, it could become a source of increased revenue for the institution that could off-set the additional salary costs,” said Director of Integrated Planning Kristen Hendrickson.

The compensation committee is fine-tuning the policy, and it should reach the Senate Nov. 17.  If approved, Chancellor Dean Van Galen can either approve it or veto it.

“It is time to change AP 43, and [the] current proposal will give pay increases to faculty that match the annual increase in tuition,” Larson said.