Guideline 5-18: Adjunct Faculty
Adjunct faculty are part-time instructors employed to teach a class or classes, generally by the semester. These instructors are considered at-will employees, meaning they may resign or be dismissed at any time. Adjunct faculty are recommended for employment by the appropriate department chair, associate dean, or campus administrator. These instructors do not receive a contract and have no guarantee of employment from one semester to the next. Many adjunct instructors have taught for the College for a number of years and some teach year round.
Adjunct instructors are generally assigned no more than nine credit hours per fall and spring semester or the equivalent number of hours in clock hours and/or non-credit classes. An exception to this general rule is the employment of TRS service retirees.
TRS retirees have restrictions on the number of hours they may work each month without retirement benefits being affected. Under TRS rules, retirees may teach up to half-time all year round or full-time for six months during any school year without affecting their retirement annuity. Total hours worked for any calendar month (including regular class assignments and substitute pay) may never be more than 1/2 the work hours a regular full-time employee normally works per month. A TRS retiree under consideration to teach more than 1/2 the standard workload of full-time faculty, must file a request for an exception to employment with TRS. A TRS retiree assigned no more than two classes is considered part-time and should not be in jeopardy, unless asked to substitute to the extent that total hours worked is greater than one-half the load of a regular full-time instructor.
There are no similar restrictions on the employment of an ORP retiree. ORP retirees may be assigned classes up to a full-load without affecting their retirement status.
The rate of pay for adjunct instructors is set by the Board of Regents. From time to time the need arises for an adjunct instructor to be assigned a full-load for the fall or spring semesters. In these situations, while the rate of pay for lecture and lab is the same as other adjunct instructors, an additional board approved stipend is paid per fall or spring semester. These individuals are also eligible for membership in TRS and other insurance benefits similar to regular contracted faculty.
The rate of pay for all adjunct instruction in the summer, whether teaching one or more classes, is the hourly rate approved by the Board of Regents. The additional stipend is not paid during the summer sessions, regardless of the number of hours that are taught.
An applicant may apply to teach by sending a cover letter indicating area or field of interest with a resume and a copy of college transcript(s). Information about potential openings for employment may be obtained in the Human Resource Office or the Evening Dean's Office on each campus.
An applicant subsequently employed must complete an employment packet. These documents should be completed as soon as possible after the applicant is notified of the College's intent to hire him/her. Employment packets are available at the Evening Dean's Office and at Human Resources. The documents that need to be provided or completed include the following:
- Application for Employment (if not previously completed)
- Technical instructors must also complete a Statement of Qualifications (SOQ) in addition to an application. The Statement of Qualifications should be completed accurately and in detail. A new SOQ must be completed if the employee is changing teaching fields from his current application or teaching assignment.
- I-9: This document verifies eligibility to be employed and requires certain backup documentation. This form must be completed within three (3) business days in the Evening Dean's or Human Resource offices. An I-9 must be completed if an employee has not worked during the past year or if there employment status has changed.
- Payroll Information Form for San Jacinto College: Payroll information must be updated if the employee has been eliminated from the computer system. The Payroll Department will verify current information.
- W-4: verifying dependent and tax status for withholding purposes. If the monthly check is below $500 there will be no tax withheld. An employee may request a specific amount to be withheld on the W-4.
- Copy of Social Security card for payroll purposes
- Designation of beneficiary form for part-time retirement plan
- If an active member of TRS (being full-time employee of a public school or another college) must complete a TRS-5
- Acknowledgment of Drug Free Institution
- Official transcripts verifying credentials need to be ordered from the appropriate colleges or universities and mailed directly to Human Resources.
- Application for Parking Permit
San Jacinto College generally pays the last working day of the month. Depending on the semester, payment to adjuncts is made in four or five monthly payments. The instructor will receive a written verification of assignment and salary. Any questions concerning documentation or pay should be addressed to the Human Resource Office at 281-998-6115.
Adjunct instructors teaching less than a full-load will have similar benefits as other part-time employees, whereas an adjunct instructor with a full-load assignment may be eligible for retirement and health benefits similar to contracted full-time instructors.
Because the College does not participate in the Social Security program, adjunct faculty are required to pay into an alternate retirement plan into which the employee contributes 6.2% through payroll deduction and the College contributes 1.3%. The employee vests in the part-time plan as of their first deposit. There may be certain restrictions and penalties for early withdrawal as well as a tax liability. For more information, contact the Human Resource Office at 281-998-6115.
An adjunct instructor with a full-load teaching assignment for the full length of the fall or spring semester may be eligible for insurance (health, dental, life and long-term disability) and membership in the Teacher Retirement System (TRS). Members vest in TRS after five (5) years participation. A 6.4% monthly contribution from the employee is required, with the state contributing 6%. For more information about insurance benefits and TRS retirement, contact the Human Resource Office at 281-998-6115.
Orientation and Training
Orientation sessions for adjunct instructors are conducted at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters. All adjunct instructors must attend an orientation session once a year. Adjunct faculty teaching in the fall should attend an orientation session in the fall. At these sessions, basic employment and instructional procedures are covered and there is opportunity for instructors to complete any remaining employment forms.
In addition, the College provides mandatory training sessions for instructors with no previous teaching experience. Instructional techniques, use of instructional media, planning the semester, designing and administering examinations, maintaining a grade book, marking rolls, and other relevant topics are discussed.