Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Peek at This ABD Adjunct's Schedule

It has been two weeks now since I started adjuncting, and I'm starting to fall into a rhythm with my schedule. And I like the rhythm that is emerging. So, here's a little window into one ABD adjunct's world:

Mondays: I work from home. I get up at about 7:15 and spend the next hour getting dressed, eating, and checking out what happened online while I slept. My husband and kid are out the door at 8:15, and I get to work. I am feeling gung-ho and ready to tackle the week. I work diligently until 2:30, when I have to go get the kid from school. Most of the time up until then was spent prepping for classes - I prep for the entire week all at once. From 2:30-3:30, I am with the kid, helping her with her homework, hearing about her day, etc. From 3:30-5:30, I read RSS feeds and otherwise fart about online, blogging, etc. It's not entirely unrelated to work, since I also use this time to compile my examples that I use in class to teach. I label each item of interest with "sociology" and with a more topic-specific tag, like race or gender. From 5:30-7:30 is spent cooking, eating, spending time with family. 7:30 to 9:00 is for my online teaching job. I'm in bed by 10.

Tuesdays: I am up at 6:15, out the door at 7:15, and in the classroom at 8am for Social Problems. I am back in my office and ready to work by 9:30, and work pretty nonstop until 12:45, when I leave for my 1:00 Intro to Soc class. It ends just in time to go get my kid from school, repeat evening from Monday. My work time on Tuesday and Thursdays is devoted to my dissertation. This contradicts the advice I hear most, to have all your class prep on the same days you teach, so you have entire days to focus on research. I find it easier to work on my dissertation in my office, and prep for classes from home. Something about the environmental cues. This also contradicts the fact that I have office hours during this time. But the only person I've seen so far is one of the department's grad students, looking for advice on applying to PhD programs (the place I'm adjuncting is terminal masters).

Wednesdays: Up at 7:15, and out the door by 8:45 - this time, to go grocery shopping. I find that this is a very peaceful time to grocery shop. I am back and at my computer ready to work by 10:30. I am supposed to work pretty nonstop until 2:30. But I'm finding this hard. My mind starts wandering. These four hours I try dedicate to all the "other" stuff - not dissertation, not teaching prep. Other research projects. Wednesdays are YMCA days, and I take the kid swimming from 3:45-5:30. I get about an hour of websurfing in while she's swimming. Also, I spend an extra hour in the evening going over the next day's lectures I prepared back on Monday in addition to doing my online teaching stuff.

Thursdays: See Tuesday

Fridays: I want to make my Fridays like my Mondays, the idea being I can devote more time to research. But I am finding my brain to be totally fried at this point. Seriously. I have difficulty stringing two thoughts together. I can't even hold intelligent conversations, let alone trust myself to work on something important. I usually get about four solid hours of work in the entire day, and it's work an hour, take an hour off, work an hour, take an hour off, etc. So far, the off time is spent watching episodes of Dexter.

Saturdays and Sundays I don't really have a schedule, but I typically spend about four hours each day working on research and dissertating, and another two hrs each day catching up on feeds and other online vacuums. And, of course, my hour and a half each day teaching online.

Total:

10 hrs DISSERTATION
7 hrs COURSE PREP
6 hrs IN THE CLASSROOM
10 hrs ONLINE TEACHING
8 hrs RESEARCH NOT RELATED TO DISSERTATION

So, I spend about 41 hrs a week working. Not bad, really. I don't feel so bad about my Friday Dexter marathons anymore.

And if you can count SOME of my RSS reading as work - since I get my teaching examples and ideas from there, after all - then you can bump that number up even more. Also, isn't social networking an important part of being an academic? Keeping up ties with other sociologists and whatnot???

Let's just call that work too.

Now I'm WAY over 40hrs per week. I should totally take tomorrow off. I deserve it.

3 comments:

Stillie said...

I'm a HS English teacher, with 3 AP preps and 3 academics. I've never actually *counted* how many hours a week I dedicate to grading, lesson design, crying, and fretting outside of the classroom. Maybe I'll try that the week after next.

I told my boss yesterday that I've grown very weary of working all day, going home, and working all night. That didn't go over very well. Oops.

Gem said...

You SO deserve it. :-)

P.S. So you adjunct and do online teaching. In the cycle of an academic, what's next? Will you search for tenure-track positions once your dissertation is nearing completion?

Anomie said...

The crying! I forgot to factor in the time spent crying! Ah, teaching. I used to teach elementary art, and spent a mere 8 weeks interning as a high school teacher. I prefer college students.

Yes, I'm already looking for tenure track jobs for next year. The market is tight though, so fingers crossed! Ideally, that is the next step, but I may also have a layover in postdoc land, or get a visiting prof job.