University of the People

Discussion in 'Online & DL Teaching' started by Bruce, May 19, 2016.

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  1. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    For those looking to break through the "must have experience" barrier for online teaching, the University of the People (DEAC) is hiring online instructors for several different academic disciplines.

    You're called a "volunteer", so there's no pay involved, but if you're looking for experience and a resume add (or just want to pay it forward), it's worth checking out;

    https://www.higheredjobs.com/search/advanced_action.cfm?PosType=1&PosType=2&InstType=1&InstType=2&InstType=3&Keyword=%22university+of+the+people%22&Remote=2&Submit=Search+Jobs
     
  2. scaredrain

    scaredrain Member

    You are paid a stipend at University of the People. The stipend depends on the number of students and your level of education and the type of course you are teaching. it will not make you rich by any means but its a nice thought. They do not mention this in case in the future they are not able to pay stipends at that rate or at all.
     
  3. Michigan68

    Michigan68 Active Member

    I applied for a 'volunteer' teaching position about a few months ago. I met the education and work experience qualifications and I have classroom teaching experience. But I haven't heard from them. I'm disappointed.

    Not sure if I should send a 2nd follow up note to the HR email. Any thoughts?


    Michael
     
  4. scaredrain

    scaredrain Member

    You should definitely follow up, they have had some turn over at the administrative level and some things have shifted from being in Israel to the West Coast. I think the kinks are ironed out now.
     
  5. jonlevy

    jonlevy Member

    I also queried them a while back, seemed like a WOT. A system that expects anyone to teach classes for a pittance while nailing down big grants, isn't long for this world.
     
  6. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Maybe. But they're truly fantastic at getting good press, so maybe not.
     
  7. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I think a lot depends upon the size. I don't think UPeople ever intends to attract the student body of places like Phoenix. So they may not need a never ending pool of adjuncts which can only be filled by dangling money.

    Grants are, typically, not for paying staff. The potential for abuse would be too great. Grant money can only be spent on the programs for which the grant was awarded. So if People is getting a grant to upgrade their web interface or their LMS then that is what the money has to be spent on.

    If a potential instructor didn't understand that then I think the University is likely better off without them.
     
  8. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    The school doesn't expect them to teach for a pittance, they expect them to teach for free. The instructors are volunteers. They know that when they sign on. Clearly these are people who's primary motivation in this matter is not money. The school seems to be doing better than ever.
     
  9. jonlevy

    jonlevy Member

    I suppose the Administrators work for free too? The whole thing stinks IMO.
     
  10. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    I'm wiling to bet that if their staff really is paid, it's a whole hell of a lot less than those at traditional "non-profit" schools.
     
  11. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    The only problem I see with relying so heavily on volunteers is that they'll tend to pay less attention to their commitment to you and more to their commitments to those who are actually paying them money.

    But that said, I don't understand your comment. There's nothing duplicitous about what they're doing.
     
  12. jonlevy

    jonlevy Member

    Of course their staff is paid otherwise nothing would get done. Only the poor suckers teaching for free experience are getting tricked. There are plenty of free colleges and universities that charge little or no tuition and they pay their instructors.
     
  13. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    A lot of people work for free in order to gain experience, and to put that experience on their resumes.

    They're called "interns". Pretty common, actually sought after, and sometimes mandatory, in higher education.
     
  14. Michigan68

    Michigan68 Active Member


    Bruce,

    I do appreciate you posting the initial thread. It started out trying to help people get 'experience' in online teaching, which so many complain that it is the reason why they do not get hired by other schools, not sure why it went sideways.

    I personally would work for free teaching so I could put that on my resume, since 21 years ago I did start out as an 'blueprint runner' to get my foot in the door at an engineering company. I paid my dues, and I am still glad for that opportunity.


    Michael
     
  15. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Does University of the People lie to applicants about what they'll get in return? If not, they're not "getting tricked". If you don't like their model that's understandable, but that doesn't justify lying about them.
     
  16. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    Plenty? OK, name 10.
     
  17. jonlevy

    jonlevy Member

    They are called Community Colleges in the US and Free Universities in Europe.

    Bottom line UoP has money to operate but chooses not to pay faculty. That is exploitative not progressive especially when the faculty are desperate job seekers.
     
  18. jonlevy

    jonlevy Member

    UoP total revenue in 2015 was $1.4 million therefore why can't they pay something to faculty? Why would faculty not be worth paying? Is faculty something that they value least?

    http://www.guidestar.org/ViewPdf.aspx?PdfSource=0&ein=26-4078735

    If you think this is good for faculty, then you might like MOOCs too and replacing online adjuncts with AI programs.
     
  19. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    It is just business, with the internet you have an explosion of available people with PhDs from the same schools that hire online adjuncts. I used to adjunct for few for profit as back in 2000 salaries were considered good and most of the time you only needed a Masters degree from a solid school. My first gig at an online school used to pay $2700 for a10 week gig and this was at a NA school, not so bad for a part time job in 2000.

    Today in 2016, salaries are actually lower, most schools pay around $1500 for an online 3 credit course and most of the time they need a PhD as a minimum qualification. With the advent of online PhDs, there is an oversupply of cheap labor with online PhDs that have no choice but to take low salaries as traditional schools most likely will not take them. If you look at the typical catalog of your traditional online school, most people have PhDs from online schools as well.

    I don't anticipate things getting better in particular with schools like University of the People, if this concept picks up, you will have lots of online schools going out business and will have more pressure to pay less to stay alive. On the other hand, you have more people taking online PhDs mainly because they are available and many feel that it could be a ticket for a nice part time job after retirement.
     
  20. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Total revenue means that they brought in $1.4M not that they put $1.4M into their pockets after meeting expenses.

    Have you reviewed their financials? Taken a gander at their balance sheet? How much of that money is left over after accreditation, tech and marketing expenses? Probably not a whole lot. Can you also guarantee that they have no debt that they are trying to pay off?

    You are one grumpy little troll.
     

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