Call for Submissions

Call for Adjuncts’ Stories: 

Labor of Love: Adjunct Stories in Higher Education

Deadline: Thursday, December 15th, 2016 by 6pm PST

Submit to:

We are seeking adjuncts’ stories for an edited book for a general audience on what it means to be an adjunct instructor at an American college or university. We are looking for stories that show who adjuncts are, how they became adjuncts, the effects that their working conditions have on their work, and their ideas for fixing the broken university system. Stories about “the plight of the adjunct” have begun circulating more broadly in the news media, and while these stories bring to light the conditions under which adjuncts labor, they do not often lead to a clearer understanding of who we are, why we do what we do, and what we think needs to change. This volume will begin to fill that gap. We intend to represent adjuncts’ stories in their own words, woven together with an analysis of changes in higher education over the last forty years, and what these changes mean for American college and university students, and our future. We would also like to offer what adjuncts themselves see as the main solutions to the problems that they encounter in doing their work. We would like to portray adjunct labor in a more positive light, revealing the huge contributions that adjuncts are making to educating our nation, despite the odds against them. We view adjuncts as a source of expertise for solving the problems that American higher education is facing in the 21st century.

The book is intended primarily for anyone who has an interest in higher education, which really should be everyone, but especially tuition-payers – students and their parents. Therefore, we are looking for stories written for a non-academic audience. In our experience, few people really understand how higher education is structured, or how that structure has been changing over the last few decades, and what effect this has had on the people standing at the front of their classrooms. Unless more people understand what has been happening and how it affects them, they are unlikely to support the changes that are necessary to fix our broken system. Your stories will help people to have a clearer picture of these issues.

Length: 4,000-5,000 words would be great, but whatever you want to contribute.

Stories could address any or all of the following questions:

Why did you become a teacher? How did you become an adjunct?

What keeps you teaching without security and stable income?

What is one of your most fulfilling teaching stories?

What is one of your most difficult experiences?

Are you still actively doing research in your field?

What other work do you do besides teaching? How does this affect your teaching?

How are your students affected by your adjunct status?

Are you represented by a union?  How does this impact your job?

How does being an adjunct impact your activism?

What would be the most important thing that could improve your job situation?

What would you do to improve the university system as it stands today?

And anything else you think is relevant.


If you plan to participate, please let us know by filling out this brief survey:


**If you have concerns about publishing under your name and worry that you may be retaliated against etc., please let us know by emailing us at