Basic Skills – The Front Line Faculty are Often Adjuncts; How Do we Support and Involve Them?

Santa Barbara City College, BSI Workshop Coordinator

The Issues and Solutions document below were generated at the "Involving Adjunct Faculty in Your College BSI Efforts" breakouts during the recent Fall Regional Teaching and Learning Workshops. The solutions were suggested by both the adjunct and full-time faculty attending these sessions. We all know the important role that adjunct faculty play in teaching our basic skills classes, and if you haven't yet had a discussion about adjunct issues in your Basic Skills Committee, I hope that this list will at least serve to get the conversation started. If any of you have other ideas that have been effective on your campuses, please send them to me so that we can add them to the list.

Getting Adjunct Faculty Involved in College BSI Efforts
Issues Solutions
Lack of time

Lack of money

Lack of information
Involvement in BSI committee: paid for through professional development


Adjunct contact person

Administration must value adjuncts more

Coordinate, combine email distributions

Full time partnerships or mentoring

Social activities

Create website where adjuncts can contribute

effective practices for flex credit

Include BSI as a part of the new hire process
Adjuncts don’t meet on a regular basis with FT faculty Create videos for the department to introduce new hires to BSI work
Motivation to come to meetings with time commitments they already have Give flex or CEU’s (continuing education units) Use to build CV
No way to share/create cohorts Office or lounge space, flex support, partnerships or mentoring by full-time faculty
Lack of ties/connection with school and faculty Orientation/welcome to school
Meetings scheduled at convenient times for full time, not necessarily part time Consistent meeting times, poll adjuncts
Lack or professional development with no pay Grant writers need to consider part-timers as well
FT-PT building a sense of team FT-PT partnerships and mentoring program
Lack of campus orientation and sharing of student and faculty resources Orientation/welcome to school
Difficulty with resource access for night faculty Orientation/welcome to school


Having a voice
Virtual community – BLOGS, resource links (allows faculty to see connections – the whole picture)

Mixed training – full time and adjunct – “adjunct only” faculty inquiry group

Increased “meaningful” professional development

Union connection with adjunct
Lack of cohesive on campus efforts Technology, CDs, emails, retreat?

Adjunct experience – tap into it!
Evening classes Online tools/newsletter, mentoring
Lack of guidance (when teaching new courses) Partnerships and Mentoring
Time/availability College hours that are more flexible/social

Consistent/meaningful virtual connections whenever possible
Isolation Develop partnerships and team/mentor relationships

Buy-in on both sides

PTers need ownership

FTers must value adjunct input

RESPECT vs marginalization
Adjunct faculty not offered opportunities to work on BSI Listserv for all faculty members related to basic skills opportunities

Course level mentor or partnership program

Shared office space

Flex credit/pay/stipends for adjunct faculty to participate

Learning communities with adjunct-tenured faculty teams
Not enough training (FT get the spots) Part of BSI $ allocated to part-time faculty

User friendly training product FAQ
Lack of awareness of BS issues, history, resources, campus efforts Need campus Basic Skills coordinator and a Basic Skills adjunct coordinator

Physical and virtual place for dissemination of teaching and learning resources, especially basic skills
Campus-wide communication of basic skills issues More comprehensive adjunct orientation of campus resources and teaching/learning resources

Campus-wide “planning hour” to allow cross-discipline coordination and faculty planning w/o teaching conflicts

Compensation for adjunct participation in Basic Skills training/department meetings/professional development
Lack of connection with faculty from other disciplines Multidisciplinary meetings on basic skills that require adjunct faculty attendance
Freeway flyers not on campus long enough to make connections w/resources and great college community

Day vs night part timers

Time of meetings & compensation

Regional trainings:

Building investment between districts nearby

Flex time


BSI Funding:

(college success initiative – CSI)

Include part-timers in leadership roles & compensate (legitimatizes role)
More opportunities than adjunct realize due to lack of communication, e.g. this workshop Credit for basic skills certification

Develop network of communication to describe terms of employment at various colleges – will reveal disparities
No consistency in support for adjunct at state level Recruit adjuncts for faculty development committees
Sense of alienation at department and college level One adjunct email address state-wide; forward all emails to gmail

Handbook for adjunct faculty re: resources, bargaining agreement, contract specifics

CB 21Recoding for Basic Skills Courses

Your college should have a spreadsheet of all the basic skills courses and their master course file CB coding. Discipline faculty should be correcting the coding on paper until the fall data is submitted. Then between January and March 10 colleges will need to submit their newly coded basic skills courses through their MIS to the Chancellor’s Office. If you do not recode in the spring, all of the basic skills course data will be rejected as errors. This is not rocket science. The training session is archived and available at the BSI website and the Academic Affairs website at the Chancellor’s Office. If your college or district needs help, contact jfulks [at]