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The Changing Face of Business School Faculty

May 2012

By Jessica Brown, Senior Manager, Knowledge Services, AACSB Internationa

Increasing cutbacks, evolving instructional technologies, shifting student demographics, changing economic conditions, and demanding business practices all have a lot in common. They are just a few of the many reasons why business schools may choose to add more part-time and adjunct faculty to their ranks. For example, of the 447 AACSB-accredited institutions that are located in the United States that responded to the 2011–12 Global Salary Survey, 94.9% (424) reported that their business school employs part-time or adjunct faculty on its staff. Of the 507 schools that participated in this survey question, 94.7% reported the presence of part-time or adjunct faculty at their school.

Given that the overwhelming majority of reporting institutions indicated that their business school does employ part-time and adjunct faculty, it is important to explore this category of faculty in addition to the full-time counts. For AACSB-accredited institutions, it also is important to remember that the participating and supporting faculty categories within the AACSB Accreditation Standards apply to both full-time and part-time faculty at a school.

While AACSB does not collect detailed information on part-time or adjunct faculty, it does have some data of interest. As mentioned, more than 94% of schools that participated in the 2011–12 Global Salary Survey have acknowledged having at least some part-time and adjunct faculty among their ranks. The table below shows the mean pay rate per credit hour for part-time and adjunct positions at U.S. AACSB-accredited schools.


Average Part-Time/Adjunct Faculty Pay per Credit Hour for U.S. AACSB-Accredited Schools

(Source: 2011–2012. AACSB International. Global Salary Survey.)

Additionally, on the 2010–11 Business School Questionnaire (BSQ), only 50 schools (7.1%) of 700 did not report any part-time faculty information. For this particular survey, part-time faculty data is collected as FTE (full-time equivalent) rather than by a head count. Based on the total full-time faculty and the total FTE of faculty, 80.4% of the total FTE faculty reported are full-time staff members. This leaves nearly 20% of the total FTE faculty being represented by other employee types. However, this does not mean that part-time faculty are teaching a higher or lower percentage of courses. For example, based on the 2010–11 BSQ, only 17.4% of undergraduate and 21.5% of graduate credit hours are being taught by faculty who are not full-time. Overall, only 18.3 of total credit hours are being taught by part-time faculty.

The overall percentage of faculty listed by type also has been relatively stable, though individual schools may have changed more than others. The charts below display the percentages for each faculty type.



2007-2008 2008-2009


2009-2010


2010-2011

Obviously, part-time and adjunct faculty data is an area where there is currently a wealth of interest due in part to quickly moving business practices, advancing technology, and changing funding paradigms. As these structural and cultural differences seemingly continue to impact AACSB member schools, any further shifts in common and effective business school faculty and staffing practices will continue to be reported.

About this Data

AACSB International houses the largest database on business schools worldwide. AACSB members may access this database (DataDirect) by login at: datadirect.aacsb.edu.