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updated: 2/18/2014 5:26 PM

Report looks at U of I faculty concerns

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Associated Press

URBANA, Ill. -- A new draft report from the University of Illinois' flagship campus attempts to address concerns raised by faculty who aren't on tenure tracks.

The recently released draft outlines how instructors and others who aren't on tenure tracks can be promoted. It also proposes a new title, teaching professor. The job would be focused on teaching rather than a mix of instruction and research.

According to The News-Gazette, the report also encourages offering multiyear contracts to instructors who aren't tenured. Such contracts are rare for instructors who aren't in line for tenure, a contractual guarantee that many college faculty have or are working toward that makes it extremely difficult to fire them or do away with their jobs.

Concerns about relatively low pay and job security for such positions have become a national issue, and faculty at Illinois and elsewhere have called for those who lack tenure to have a greater say in how their status on campuses.

Response to the report will now be up to colleges and departments around campus, University of Illinois officials say.

Some nontenured faculty took issue with report's reference to them as "specialists."

Dorothee Schneider, a full-time lecturer in the history department, said people such as herself "are more generalists than specialists."

"We were hired because we can cover many bases," she said.

Reliance on nontenured faculty has increased in recent years. The campus has 363 full-time non-tenure-track faculty members who are paid mean salaries ranging from $58,711 to $76,697, depending on the degree to which they focus on teaching or research.

The Urbana-Champaign campus has about 1,690 full-time faculty in the tenure system. They're paid mean salaries ranging from $87,532 to $136,719, depending on whether or not they are full professors.

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