The Disappearing Tenure-Track Job

by E Wayne Ross on May 12, 2009

Inside Higher Ed: The Disappearing Tenure-Track Job

Year by year, various federal data sets are released, and document the steady growth of adjunct positions and decline of tenure-track jobs in the academic work force.

In an attempt to draw more attention to these shifts over time, the American Federation of Teachers is today releasing a 10-year analysis of the data, showing just how much the tenure-track professor has disappeared. The overall number of faculty and instructor slots grew from 1997 to 2007, but nearly two-thirds of that growth was in “contingent” positions — meaning those off of the tenure track. Over all, those jobs increased from two-thirds to nearly three-quarters of instructional positions.