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Call for Abstracts: 2016 Pacific APA Session on “Our Obligations to Adjuncts”

Wednesday, September 9, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Erin Shepherd
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The American Philosophical Association Committee on the Teaching of Philosophy invites abstracts for its upcoming session, “Our Obligations to Adjuncts,” planned for the 2016 Pacific Division meeting, March 30–April 3, 2016, in San Francisco, CA.
According to the AAUP Research Office, non-tenure-track faculty now comprise more than 70 percent of the professoriate. In the humanities, the most recent data from the Delphi Project suggest that 46.2 percent of all humanists teach part-time, while 22.2 percent teach full-time, but off the tenure track. We suspect these numbers are on the rise. In this session, we’re calling upon the philosophical community to think about these statistics and the individuals hidden behind them.
The committee is particularly interested both in presentations from ethicists and social-political philosophers who might use their expertise to think about our obligations to contingent faculty and in presentations from department chairs at institutions with particularly humane adjunct policies. In the spirit of active learning, the committee asks that presenters not read a paper but plan a more interactive way to engage their audience of peers.
Questions to consider might include, but are not limited to, the following:
  • What do contingent faculty need in order to do their jobs well? What are they owed?
  • How should we figure per-course and full-time salaries for adjunct faculty? What benefits should they receive?
  • How does the treatment of contingent faculty vary among public and private institutions? What are the sources of these differences, and can they be overcome?
  • What policies and programs have other professional organizations initiated to support their adjunct populations?
  • How should contingent faculty be represented in institutional governance?
  • Reformers have supported the use of accrediting agencies, unions, and high school guidance counselors to bring about change, while others have focused on reducing the number of doctoral students. Which of these and other strategies hold promise for philosophers and why?
To apply, please submit as an email attachment a 250-500-word abstract prepared for anonymous review and a CV to Wendy Turgeon ( by Friday, October 2, 2015. In addition to articulating the topic of your presentation, your abstract should explain the way in which you plan to engage your audience interactively. In the body of the email, please include your name, affiliation, and contact information. Individual submissions and joint/co-authored submissions are welcome.
The committee will strive to assemble a panel that is diverse in all relevant respects. We are planning to notify authors with a decision by Friday, October 9, 2015. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me (
Alexandra Bradner
Chair, APA Committee on the Teaching of Philosophy
P.S. The deadline to submit abstract’s for the committee’s session on how to read philosophy at the 2016 Central Division meeting is Monday, September 14. For more information about APA sessions organized by the Committee on the Teaching of Philosophy, please see our calls posted on the APA website.

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