Higher Education Workforce Trends

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Evolving Faculty Patterns

Today about 70% of faculty at U.S. institutions hold full- or part-time nontenure-track positions. The TIAA Institute focuses on such issues as the quality of student learning, making the most of the growing contingent faculty and reluctant retirees. 

Want to learn more about our higher education insights? Download our 2018 TIAA Institute Higher Education Thought Leadership Annotated Bibliography.

Insights

Also produced by the TIAA Institute, Insights features reports addressing prominent issues in financial security, higher education, and philanthropy. While typically written for a primarily non-technical audience, Insights are prepared using the same level of academic rigor found in our other research publications, and can serve as valuable sources of information for a diverse group of readers.

June 2020

Some adjuncts appear to be unaware of their eligibility to participate in a retirement savings plan at the college or university where they work.

March 2019

The ranks of adjunct faculty have increased rapidly in recent decades. How are these individuals faring financially?

December 2018

Women of color presidents and chancellors describe how their race and gender has affected their careers and suggest ways to diversify the college presidency.

Research Reports

Original research produced by the TIAA Institute—both independently and in collaboration with noted scholars—examines topics of interest to the academic, nonprofit and public sectors. The reports combine statistical findings with thoughtful, data-driven observations and conclusions to provide in-depth analyses that are informative and appropriate for both technical and more academic audiences.

March 2016

Today, some 70% of faculty at U.S. institutions hold full- or part-time nontenure-track positions, and a return to the days of a largely tenure-track faculty is highly unlikely. What’s less clear is what future faculty models should look like.

March 2016

U.S. colleges and universities have indeed increased faculty diversity over the past 20 years, but most gains have been off the tenure track.

May 2013

In The American Faculty: The Restructuring of Academic Work and Careers (Johns Hopkins University Press) we documented how the faculty and their careers were being reshaped in fundamental ways.