I started #AdjunctChat several months ago to meet what I perceived was a need regarding support and resource sharing amongst adjunct instructors in higher education. Having taught as an adjunct in two universities, between 3 different schools, for nearly ten years, I couldn’t help but think that other adjuncts may find it useful to share, give, and take, and as I could not readily find this happening anywhere else, I thought I should do something about that (rather than just consider it to no end with no action). Some of this history was recently discussed in Issue 5 of the The Grad Caucus Chronicle.
Now that the #AdjunctChat tag seems to be used a bit, I think it may be time to get some thoughts on how else this can be used to increase and support discussions that bring value to the lives of very busy (adjunct) instructors. While we recently discussed which day and time works best, at least for this semester, now may be an opportunity to discuss other specifics about how this functions.
What I am thinking about is how we facilitate #AdjunctChat, how we select topics, and the time span for the chats themselves. If there are other issues that should be considered now, please let me know!
- Regarding facilitation, I am wondering if having some guest or collaborative facilitators to focus on specific topics / dates, would not be a bad idea. It would allow for a different focus, facilitation style, and layers of engagement. Interested in (considering) this?
- Regarding how we select topics, this has been done a week or so before the chat. If we have guest facilitators, should the topics then be linked to the person? How long in advance should this be decided? How about changing the topical area at the last minute due to pressing topics of current interest (cf. #IAmMargaretMary)?
- Finally, while the live chat has been for one hour every other week, it was recently suggested that this time period be expanded, with comments made over a longer period during that day. I am not sure how much this would work without active facilitation, though perhaps others may have some insights on this topic?
#AdjunctChat has been an experience coming from my passion about identifying and building community when a need is identified, and I am starting to sense some new needs that I hope we can adapt this informal (and fully uncompensated and unsponsored) little group. Please either share your thoughts as comments here OR Tweet me in response. Thanks for all the support and encouragement I have received since embarking upon this little project.