ERIC Number: EJ1205872
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019
Teaching and Learning in an Age of Precarity: Toward a Pedagogy of the Transitory. Wicked Problems Forum: Contingent Labor in Higher Education
McConnell, Kathleen F.
Communication Education, v68 n2 p252-258 2019
Contingent faculty are often under-resourced, suggesting that crucial aspects of our discipline receive inadequate support. Moreover, while the discipline increasingly relies on tenure-ineligible faculty, it has made few contributions to the scholarship on academic casualization, an employment trend in which temporary contracts replace stable jobs. Thus the field has arrived at this moment of opportunity without the benefit of research and with a poor sense of how contingency is shaping communication studies. In this article, Kathleen McConnell offers guidelines for future research on contingency that can contribute to teaching and learning contexts in concrete ways. First, she discourages approaches that look at the abuse of contingent labor and its effects on student learning through individualistic logics that focus on personal choice rather than organizational patterns. She asserts that any accounting of the phenomenon of contingency must include the institutional conditions that impact classroom practices. Second, the status of contingent faculty and their place within higher education is terrain for rhetorical struggle. McConnell urges the reader not to view contingent faculty as simply less than tenure-eligible faculty or to define contingent labor as nothing more than a tenure problem. Rather, she proposes that one attend to the ways in which casualization and contingency have transformed the academic project with implications for all areas of communication education and research.
Descriptors: Adjunct Faculty, College Faculty, Communication (Thought Transfer), Labor Problems, Guidelines, Research Needs, Institutional Characteristics, Tenure, Educational Practices, Rhetoric
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A