Faculty salaries widely differ between men and women

Female and non-tenure-track faculty members at USF get paid significantly less than male and tenure-track faculty, according to a report by the American Association of University Professors.

The annual academic salary report, entitled “Inequities Persist for Women and Non-Tenure-Track Faculty,” analyzes the economic status of academic professions in 1,416 accredited colleges and universities in the United States.

The AAUP is a non-profit organization that was founded in 1915. It’s best known for ensuring the academic freedom of individual faculty members. It also aims to define academic values and standards for post-secondary institutions, and to ensure that education contributes to the greater good, according to www.aaup.org . The association has approximately 45,000 members, including faculty, librarians and academic professionals from two- and four-year accredited colleges and universities.

“We break the institutions into categories based on the highest degrees that they offer, and then we report everything by faculty rank,” said John Curtis, the director of research at the AAUP and author of the report. “We also break it down by gender.”

The report states that the average salary for tenured male professors is $11,100 more than that of tenured female professors at USF. Male associate professors make $7,300 more, assistant professors $4,800 more and instructors $4,100 more than female faculty in the same rankings, on average.

The report finds that overall, for full-time faculty in the institutions surveyed, women earn about 80 percent of what men earn.

“In terms of gender inequity, since we’re showing a continuing pattern of women being at a disadvantage in faculty positions, we’re arguing that it’s simply not making the best use of all available personnel and potential faculty,” Curtis said. “Women are not able to get into full-time faculty positions and advanced to senior levels as easily as men. Therefore, they may be discouraged from entering into the faculty profession.”

Substantial inequities were also found in comparing tenured to non-tenured faculty.The report shows that the salary for full-time non-tenured faculty at USF is approximately $42,300, while full-time, tenured-track faculty salaries range from $53,800 to $86,000.

Overall, the report found that the colleges and universities surveyed paid full-time non-tenured faculty 26 percent less than those tenured. Part-time non-tenured faculty was paid 64 percent less.

Curtis thinks that these inequities can compromise the academic freedom of those affected.

“There is a growing reliance on contingent faculty, which is faculty that are not on tenure track, both part-time and also full-time faculty who are on limited contracts,” said Curtis. “Our concern was that their academic freedom is actually compromised if they’re continually worrying about whether they’re going to have a job or not, so that they are afraid to say or do things that are controversial at all.”

Overall, faculty salaries for the 2004-2005 rose by 2.8 percent, but failed to keep up with the rate of inflation, which was 3.3 percent. This is the first time in eight years that this has happened.