A Complete Guide How to become a Community College Professor

How To Become A Community College Professor

How to become a community college professor?

Community college belongs to the range of educational institutions. They provide open enrolment to the students who recently qualified the high school graduation. These institutions consider different academic programs such as college transfer and workforce education. Few of these institutions have dormitories and athletic teams as the university counterpart. In this topic, we are discussing “how to become a community college professor?”.

Community college professors are of two different types. One group of teachers focuses on the teaching aspects and another group of teachers focuses on the research aspect. As the mission of the community colleges is different, they generally don’t provide wider research scope to the community college professor.

Differences between Community college vs traditional college

These can’t be considered as research hubs like traditional universities. Theses colleges provide education to the students for getting gainful employment. In contrast, the general colleges provide research opportunities and education to the students for gaining both knowledge and employments.

There lays a significant difference between the professors of community colleges and other colleges. The professors of the community college teach the primary and important lessons to get gainful employment. The normal college professors teach the students in elaborated ways with the support of practical sessions and research work. The college professors support the student to publish their research works.

Small size classes are a vital aspect of the community college experience in the city.  You do not see a lot of massive, noisy lectures like traditional college classes. In most community college classes there are 20 or fewer students.

Now, the thing is ‘how to become a community college professor?

Qualification

There is a popular belief that the professors of community colleges are not up to the mark or capable like the college professors. But this is the time to break this stigma. The community colleges are recruiting highly qualified faculties to maintain their stands in the educational segment. The employment competition is tight, that is why the efficient professors of the community colleges can train the students to crack the competitive examinations for jobs.

Recently, the community colleges are only recruiting the faculties having a minimum master’s degree. The community colleges are preferably hiring the PhD scholars as faculty. The faculty might not be a full-timer and he/she can be involved in different educational institutions at a time.

If you want the position of full-time faculty in the community colleges, you need to earn a PhD in your field of study. Becoming a full-time professor in the community colleges is tough as the competition is rising with time. But you are eligible and efficient, then you can apply for the post of a full-time professor of community college.

Job description

  • Preparing the study material during the teaching sessions (1 to 3 hours)
  • Structuring the class syllabus and manage them by maintaining community college standard
  • Crafting the lectures, assignment, and in-class discussion sessions
  • Grading the exams, assigned papers and quizzes
  • Grade assessment of the students based on in-class assignments, participation, examinations, and assignments
  • Reporting the class reviews, assessing the student data and learning outcomes of the students
  • Discussing the class curriculum with other colleagues
  • Arrange the session to discuss the key criteria of achieving their goals and success
  • Remain updated with the current affairs and developments related to the teaching-subject

Skills

A professor of the community college needs to have the following skills,

  • Approachable and social
  • Curious, inquisitive and creative
  • Resourceful and patient
  • Good bonding with students
  • A good reader
  • Strictly follow the time management
  • A good learner and listener
  • Service-focused
  • Having a good humour sense
  • Should have excellent written and verbal communicating skills
  • Having depth in the subject
  • Having at least a Master degree on the subject that the professor is teaching

How to become a community college professor?

The students often ask that way to become the professors of junior colleges or community colleges. The requirements of different institutions might vary while recruiting professors. The institutions specify recruitment criteria such as experience, certifications, and formal education. By qualifying these criteria, one becomes eligible for the post of professors.

The steps are elaborated below,

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1.Having a bachelor degree

The part-time professors can be eligible by acquiring a bachelor’s degree. This degree can be of any subject. This will make the candidate specialised in teaching that subject. Both the on-campus and online bachelor degree holders can appear for this job role. If a student wants to teach biology, he/she should have a bachelor’s degree in biology or life science.

2. Having a master degree

A standard community college recruits the faculty with a minimum qualification of a master’s degree. The master degree holders are sometimes eligible for teaching jobs of 4-years community colleges, based on their subjects of master’s degrees. They can be recruited for part-time positions or even full-time.

The faculty needs to have a master’s degree in the subject which he/she will teach in the community colleges. The master’s degree takes generally two consecutive years to complete. Along with the degree, the thesis is also an important eligibility criterion. Online master degree holders are also eligible for this post along with the on-campus master degree holders.

As the competition is too tight in this job field, the eligibility criteria become higher in a few of the community colleges. They only recruit PhD scholars as their faculty. This criterion helps to keep the standard of the community colleges and provides a unique position among other community colleges.

3. Obtain certification/ working experience

Few community colleges require professional certification or earlier work experience. For example, if a person is in the health-care sectors, needs to have teaching experience in the related field. On the other hand, while the school is appointing an accountancy teacher, that candidate needs to have a CPA (Certified Public Accountant).

4. Professor in the community college

After selecting as a professor of the community college, the individual needs to gather continuous experiences for self-development, especially the area of her/his expertise. The major responsibilities of the professors are to structure the assignments and lesson plans.

Based on that structure they deliver the lectures or go through different exercises to complete the course curriculum. The professors need to be available for assisting the students. They need to make themselves updated with the current affairs and developments related to the subjects they are teaching.

They also make the students aware of the current developments and encourage them to know about the current affairs. Being updated is always preferable while you are getting ready or training someone for any competitive exam.

The bachelor degree holders can start their career as a part-time professor in the community colleges. Along with time and gathered experiences, that person becomes eligible for the full-time professor of community college. They generally serve the positions of assistant and associate professors of community college.

Payment scale

The salary of the professors of community colleges is thirty-three per cent lower than the normal professors. The salary of college professors was increased in the middle of the 1990s and the salary of the professors of community colleges was decreased simultaneously.

This payment discrimination somehow makes this job less lucrative. The professors of the community colleges are 7.42 per cent of the total employment of this industry, this fact is stated by the BLS (US Bureau of Labour Statistics).

Challenges

  • Less institutional support to research and publish
  • No extra time for the weak students
  • Most of the community colleges do not offer tenure
  • Salary is lesser than the college professors

Opportunities

  • Better flexibility in teaching location
  • This is a student-focused teaching and learning institutions
  • Can meet students with diverse backgrounds
  • Smaller community as the numbers of enrolment are lower

Conclusion

Though there are certain challenges associated with this job role, still it is gaining popularity along with time. The professors can sharpen the skillsets and gather experiences for future betterment. As the faculties need to be updated with current developments and affairs, they can develop a vast knowledge and depth in the subject.

As the community colleges are present in almost every location, the professor can have a convenient teacher location. They can also gain experiences as the students join the community college from different backgrounds. This is a booming sector in the educational industry. From this article, you can get detailed information on ‘How to become a community college professor’.

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