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Indicators

Characteristics of Postsecondary Faculty
(Last Updated: May 2015)

From fall 1993 to fall 2013, the number of full-time faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions increased by 45 percent (from 545,700 to 791,400), while the number of part-time faculty increased by 104 percent (from 369,800 to 752,700). As a result of the faster increase in the number of part-time faculty, the percentage of faculty who were part time increased from 40 to 49 percent during this period.

In fall 2013, there were 1.5 million faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions: 51 percent were full-time and 49 percent were part-time. Faculty include professors, associate professors, assistant professors, instructors, lecturers, assisting professors, adjunct professors, and interim professors.


Figure 1. Number of faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by employment status: Selected years, fall 1993 through fall 2013

Number of faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by employment status: Selected years, fall 1993 through fall 2013

NOTE: Includes faculty members with the title of professor, associate professor, assistant professor, instructor, lecturer, assisting professor, adjunct professor, or interim professor (or the equivalent). Excludes graduate students with titles such as graduate or teaching fellow who assist senior faculty. Degree-granting institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Data through 1995 are for institutions of higher education, while later data are for degree-granting institutions. The degree-granting classification is very similar to the earlier higher education classification, but it includes more 2-year colleges and excludes a few higher education institutions that did not grant degrees. Beginning in 2007, data include institutions with fewer than 15 full-time employees; these institutions did not report staff data prior to 2007.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), "Fall Staff Survey" (IPEDS-S:93-99); IPEDS Winter 2001–02 through Winter 2011–12, Human Resources component, Fall Staff section; IPEDS Spring 2014, Human Resources component, Fall Staff section. See Digest of Education Statistics 2014, table 315.10.


From fall 1993 to fall 2013, the total number of faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions increased by 69 percent. The number of full-time faculty increased by 45 percent (from 545,700 to 791,400) over this time period, compared with an increase of 104 percent (from 369,800 to 752,700) in the number of part-time faculty. As a result of the faster increase in the number of part-time faculty, the percentage of faculty who were part time increased from 40 to 49 percent during this period. Additionally, the percentage of all faculty who were female increased from 39 percent in 1993 to 49 percent in 2013.

Although the number of faculty increased at institutions of each control type from fall 1993 to fall 2013, the percentage increases in faculty were smaller for public institutions and private nonprofit institutions than for private for-profit institutions. During this period, the number of faculty increased by 49 percent (from 650,400 to 967,700) at public institutions, by 77 percent (from 254,100 to 448,700) at private nonprofit institutions, and by 1,070 percent (from 10,900 to 127,600) at private for-profit institutions. Despite the faster growth in the number of faculty at private for-profit institutions over this period, only 8 percent of all faculty were employed by private for-profit institutions in 2013, while 63 percent were employed by public institutions and 29 percent by private nonprofit institutions.


Figure 2. Percentage distribution of full-time instructional faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by academic rank, selected race/ethnicity, and sex: Fall 2013

Percentage distribution of full-time instructional faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by academic rank, selected race/ethnicity, and sex: Fall 2013

NOTE: Degree-granting institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity. Estimates are based on full-time faculty whose race/ethnicity was known. Detail may not sum to 100 percent because data on some racial/ethnic groups are not shown. Some data have been revised from previously published figures.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), IPEDS Spring 2014, Human Resources component, Fall Staff section. See Digest of Education Statistics 2014, table 315.20.


In fall 2013, of all full-time faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, 79 percent were White (43 percent were White males and 35 percent were White females), 6 percent were Black, 5 percent were Hispanic, and 10 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander.1 Making up less than 1 percent each were full-time faculty who were American Indian/Alaska Native and of Two or more races. Among full-time professors, 84 percent were White (58 percent were White males and 26 percent were White females), 4 percent were Black, 3 percent were Hispanic, and 9 percent were Asian/Pacific Islander. Making up less than 1 percent each were professors who were American Indian/Alaska Native and of Two or more races.


Figure 3. Average salary of full-time instructional faculty on 9-month contracts in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by academic rank: Selected years, 1993–94 through 2013–14

Average salary of full-time instructional faculty on 9-month contracts in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by academic rank: Selected years, 1993–94 through 2013–14

NOTE: Degree-granting institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Data through 1995-96 are for institutions of higher education, while later data are for degree-granting institutions. The degree-granting classification is very similar to the earlier higher education classification, but it includes more 2-year colleges and excludes a few higher education institutions that did not grant degrees. Beginning in 2007, data include institutions with fewer than 15 full-time employees; these institutions did not report staff data prior to 2007. Salaries are reported in constant 2013–14 dollars, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI). Some data have been revised from previously published figures.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), "Salaries, Tenure, and Fringe Benefits of Full-Time Instructional Faculty Survey" (IPEDS-SA:93-99); and IPEDS Winter 2001–02 through Winter 2011–12, Spring 2013, and Spring 2014, Human Resources component, Salaries section. See Digest of Education Statistics 2014, table 316.10.


In academic year 2013–14, the average salary for full-time instructional faculty on 9-month contracts at degree-granting postsecondary institutions was $78,600; average salaries ranged from $54,200 for lecturers to $109,900 for professors. The average salary (adjusted for inflation) for all full-time instructional faculty increased by 9 percent from 1993–94 ($74,500) to 2009–10 ($80,900), but decreased by 3 percent from 2009–10 to 2013–14 ($78,600). A similar pattern was observed for individual academic ranks. The increases between 1993–94 and 2009–10 were 15 percent for professors (from $97,500 to $112,400), 10 percent for associate professors (from $72,800 to $80,400), 12 percent for assistant professors (from $60,500 to $67,500), 35 percent for instructors (from $46,300 to $62,700), and 8 percent for lecturers (from $52,600 to $56,600). From 2009–10 to 2013–14, average inflation-adjusted salaries across academic ranks exhibited decreases ranging from 2 to 7 percent.

The average salary for all full-time instructional faculty was higher for males than for females in all years between 1993–94 and 2013–14. In academic year 2013–14, the average salary was $85,500 for males and $70,400 for females. Between 1993–94 and 2013–14, the average salary increased by 7 percent for males and by 9 percent for females, after adjusting for inflation. Due to the faster increase in salary for females, the inflation-adjusted salary gap between male and female instructional faculty overall was slightly lower in 2013–14 than in 1993–94 ($15,200 vs. $15,300). The male-female gap for professors, however, was higher in 2013–14 than in 1993–94 ($17,400 vs. $11,400).


Figure 4. Average salary of full-time instructional faculty on 9-month contracts in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by control and level of institution: 2013–14

Average salary of full-time instructional faculty on 9-month contracts in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by control and level of institution: 2013–14

NOTE: Doctoral institutions include institutions that awarded 20 or more doctor's degrees during the previous academic year. Master's institutions include institutions that awarded 20 or more master's degrees, but less than 20 doctor's degrees, during the previous academic year. Degree-granting postsecondary institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs. Salaries are reported in constant 2013–14 dollars, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), IPEDS Spring 2014, Human Resources component, Salaries section. See Digest of Education Statistics 2014, table 316.20.


In academic year 2013–14, the average salary for full-time instructional faculty at private nonprofit institutions ($86,800) was higher than the average salaries for full-time instructional faculty at public ($75,200) and at private for-profit institutions ($50,700). Among the specific types of public institutions and private nonprofit institutions, average salaries for instructional faculty were highest at private nonprofit doctoral institutions ($101,700) and public doctoral institutions ($85,900). Average salaries were lowest for instructional faculty at private nonprofit 2-year institutions ($50,800) and public 4-year institutions other than doctoral and master's granting institutions ($61,100). Inflation-adjusted average salaries for instructional faculty were 1 percent lower in 2013–14 than in 1999–2000 at public institutions and were 7 percent higher at private nonprofit institutions and 24 percent higher at private for-profit institutions.

In academic year 2013–14, approximately 49 percent of institutions had tenure systems. The percentage of institutions with tenure systems ranged from 1 percent at private for-profit institutions to almost 100 percent at public doctoral institutions. Of full-time faculty at institutions with tenure systems, 48 percent had tenure in 2013–14, compared with 54 percent in 1999–2000. From 1999–2000 to 2013–14, the percentage of full-time faculty having tenure decreased by 5 percentage points at public institutions, by 4 percentage points at private nonprofit institutions, and by 58 percentage points at private for-profit institutions. At institutions with tenure systems, the percentage of full-time instructional faculty having tenure was generally higher for males than for females. In 2013–14, some 57 percent of males had tenure, compared with 43 percent of females.


1 Percentages are based on full-time faculty whose race/ethnicity was known. The numbers of full-time faculty in degree-granting institutions were large enough to be reported separately by sex for White faculty but not for faculty of any other racial/ethnic group.


Glossary terms: Private institution, Public school or institution
Data Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)


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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education