U of P questions

Discussion in 'Online & DL Teaching' started by HopeC, May 14, 2009.

  1. HopeC

    HopeC New Member


    I just completed my 4-week training with U of P and am moving to the mentorship phase in a few weeks. I am going to teach an undergrad education course. The thing is, I am planning to leave my teaching job so I can work from home part-time teaching online. So for anyone who teaches for U of P, can you help me decide if this is feasible? (FWIW, I will also be doing a little consulting work with my district, and my trainer said this should be OK and considered employment in field).

    I am mainly wondering how consistent the courses are. If I am approved after my mentorship, can I count on steady work? I would like to teach two courses at a time. I'm just worried about long dry spells with no income.

    TIA for sharing your experience!

  2. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I teach in the criminal justice program, but what I've noticed is that the more you participate in the voluntary (non-paid) faculty training & refresher courses, the more solicitations you'll receive.

    Last year I did at least one training/refresher course per month, and I was flooded with solicitations. This year my time is more tight, so I haven't kept up with the training like last year, and I'm getting less solicitations (which is fine, due to time constraints).

    To answer your question, I wouldn't count on UoP adjunct pay to support myself. If you hit the voluntary training hard, you'll probably get a lot of solicitations, but there's no way to predict or depend on them.
  3. HopeC

    HopeC New Member


    Thanks so much for the tip! I hadn't even thought the two (taking the courses and getting work) may be related. I am not so much depending on the work as looking for reasonable assurance that months will not go by without a course offer. Thanks again,

  4. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Some people work full time as online professors but they work for 5 to 6 schools at the time. As work is not predictable, you need to have many options so you can always fill up your hours. UoP has the worst pay so I cannot imagine how can you live just on that, I would look for at least another two schools before considering quitting my job, once you are full time it might take you another year or two to get another 2 or 3.

    I was able to live one year as full time online with 5 schools but my pay was only about 60K, this might be OK for many people but I could't afford to live with this salary so I had to go back to my B&M job with benefits but still teach online to supplement.
  5. HopeC

    HopeC New Member

    Thanks for your reply! I'm not looking to work full-time as an online teacher. I'm just wondering if it is reasonable to expect two U of P classes fairly consistently, understanding there are no guarantees, or whether you could go months without a course offer.
  6. dicks390

    dicks390 Guest

    Questins RE UOP Assistance to Instructors

    Conratulations Hope:

    I am now in the second week of UOP training. I will teach Economics. Here is what I don't know yet for sure. Assumming I pass the training, how much of the following is prepared for you in the class you will teach at UOP vs. how much you have to develop on your own?

    Discussion questions
    Actual Grading
    Paper topics

    Any other Phoenix people may chime in on ths one. Thanks in advance for your "substantive" reponses.

  7. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    There is a "prepackaged" syllabus available for every course, with assignments and point values, and there is a list of discussion questions for each week in the "Faculty Notes" section from which to choose.

    However, you can create your own discussion questions and assignments, provided they relate to the assigned reading material for the week. I've created my own DQ's and assignments if I think the suggested ones aren't up to snuff.

    I would recommend sticking with the prepared material until you've taught a course a couple of times, and get the feel for what works and what doesn't.
  8. truckie270

    truckie270 New Member

    I agree with Bruce. The provided material will get you started until you see where you need to make adjustments.

    UOP just changed the syllabus content so now university-wide policies are provided to the students through the course page, so now you do not have to include your own policy language with things like academic integrity policy, late assignment policy, etc.

    Once you have taught a course a few times your materials will only require minor adjustments with each subsequent class.

    As to the original poster's question - I would not count on UOP alone to provide you with a suitable replacement income. They try to limit you to 4 courses a term (every three months) unless you teach a high-need course and then you can exceed that number provided you are meeting your faculty requirements. Your course assignments may also be erratic due to enrollments - for example you will teach less in the summer than you will in Fall, Winter, Spring. Hope that helps.
  9. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    It depends, if you teach a popular class then you might have less risk but there is never a guarantee of courses. This business is very unstable and has little job security, you can be cut off without any warning at any time. I had trained for two schools that never gave me work and one school stopped giving work due to lack of courses.
    The problem with online schools is that always hire more people than they need so they always have someone available in case a course has enough registration. The best way to secure some work is to become a program manager or course architect as the school relies more on you, however, the problem is that these positions are quite competitive as many adjuncts apply for them with the same idea.

    In few words, don't quit your day job to become an online adjunct.
  10. dicks390

    dicks390 Guest

    Thanks-Do they even give quizzes or tests?
  11. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    Some courses do have exams; I don't use them, and substitute a written assignment that requires original research. I don't see the value of an exam, unless it's proctored.
  12. dicks390

    dicks390 Guest


    Thanks. That makes a lot of sense. I never thought about that. Is it typical at online places to not use exams because of the control issue?

  13. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I've taught for two online programs, and besides UoP which only has exams for some courses, the other one didn't have exams at all, specifically because of the control issue.

    IMO, you could hand me an exam for a subject I know nothing about, and given a week, I could probably muster a passing score using Google and other methods.
  14. bplyler

    bplyler New Member

    I have a phone interview with U of P later this week. Anyone have any pointers? Any suggestions on what would be good questions to ask the interviewer?
  15. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    Wear a nice suit (it's a headset thing).
  16. klindsey3633

    klindsey3633 New Member

    I am new at this - how does one become involved in voluntary faculty training?
  17. mbaonline

    mbaonline New Member

    Do you currently work for the University of Phoenix?

    Bruce was referring to the fact that UoPx offers continuing ed seminars (online) to its existing faculty, but not to outsiders. If you are an existing faculty member, taking these classes keeps you fresh and Bruce says it seems to help him get offers to teach classes.
  18. graymatter

    graymatter Member

    I've never heard this concept of receiving more solicitations because of taking the seminars.

    Can anyone else confirm this? I haven't received as many solicitations (considering its the fall) and had wondered why since I receive good feedback.

  19. truckie270

    truckie270 New Member

    I have noticed a difference in solicitations either as a result of participating in training seminars. My solicitations for teaching are also down recently, but I have been declining classes as well. I have received a significant increase in other opportunities such as faculty mentorships and course development.
  20. mbaonline

    mbaonline New Member

    Graymatter, not sure what you teach but there has been some turnover in the Schedulers' positions at UoPx. Some of the faculty were not getting their "regular" classes and said that they need to acquaint their new scheduler with their needs, desires and preferred classes. A quick note to your scheduler wouldn't hurt.

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