What does an Adjunct Instructor do?

Instructors provide teaching or training in a classroom setting or via a remote platform. They create and follow lesson plans, choose any necessary curriculum or resource materials, explain concepts and theories, and review assignments and examinations. They may also demonstrate techniques and assist with experiments, research, or hands-on projects. They frequently serve as mentors or advisors, offering insight on how the course or program may align with the student’s professional or educational goals.

Instructors typically have extensive professional experience in the subject area in which they are teaching. Specific requirements and credentials vary depending on the role and level, but instructors commonly would have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional experience. They must be well-organized, and have a passion for supporting students and encouraging them to succeed.

What responsibilities are common for Adjunct Instructor jobs?
  • Prepare course descriptions, outlines, and other related material.
  • Provide a safe, caring, and fun environment for participants.
  • Provide guidance and support to students in a positive manner.
  • Act as role model for students.
  • Identify and refer at-risk students to specific academic support services.
  • Work closely with program chair and/or lead faculty (as appropriate).
  • Follow and uphold all safety and security rules and procedures.
  • Provide quality service for all program participants and guests.
  • Formulate classroom objectives based on school and course objectives.
  • Assist in the planning, coordination, and execution of didactic and lab instruction.
  • Assist in inventory, organization and ordering of supplies and classroom materials.
  • Model correct drills, rules and conditioning while teaching and instructing each program.
  • Manage, rate, and provide feedback on requested weekly assessments.
What are the typical qualifications for Adjunct Instructor jobs?
  • Bachelor's or Graduate's Degree in relevant subject and/or demonstrated prior experience teaching subject.
  • Able to assist student body with exercises, drills, and tasks.
  • Provide measurable results to students with confidence and a positive attitude.
  • Utilize critical thinking and problem solving skills with students when and where appropriate.
  • Demonstrable leadership and expertise skills with the subject being taught.
  • Prior consulting experience.
  • Communicate with students using both verbal and email correspondence.
  • Sound time management, attention to detail, and work ethic.
  • Use professionalism and confidence to instruct student body.
  • Resolve conflict and issues with a positive attitude and professionalism.
EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.7 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.3 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

How much does an Adjunct Instructor make near United States?

$71,506 /yr
Total Pay

Base Pay


Additional Pay


 / yr
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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Adjunct Instructor Career Path

Learn how to become an Adjunct Instructor, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Instructor III
Adjunct Instructor
Instructor V
Adjunct Instructor

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
2 - 4
5 - 7
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Adjunct Instructor Insights

Read what Adjunct Instructor professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Second CitySecond City
Aug 18, 2021

“Everyone I've worked with has been an awesome human and fun to work with.”

BrainStorm STEM EducationBrainStorm STEM Education
Summer STEM Instructor
Aug 22, 2023

“Took me in and let me teach with little to no experience and gave great training”

Raytheon TechnologiesRaytheon Technologies
Sep 29, 2021

“NONE there is no Pro they offer good start pay and you will receive little to no raises”

Aquatics Staff
Jun 15, 2021

“This job is not anything fancy but it is a good first job with decent pay.”

Code NinjasCode Ninjas
Code Sensei
Mar 1, 2023

“Really low hours/pay Really only good as a summer job or while taking college courses.”

Life TimeLife Time
ELI Instructor
Sep 2, 2021

“I felt very comfortable there and was pushed by my supervisors in all the best ways.”

Life West Chiropractic CollegeLife West Chiropractic College
May 21, 2022

“Dysfunctional and maybe criminal activity including HR. Hiring is done on the cheap and the results the same.”

Automotive Instructor
Jul 22, 2021

“Great people to work with (local level) and I always felt a sense of team.”

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Adjunct Instructor Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of instructors

An instructor's workday involves creating a curriculum and instructing students in a classroom setting. They may meet with students outside the classroom to offer advice and counsel related to the instruction topic. They collect and grade assignments, administer tests, and sign off on students' advancements.

Yes, becoming an instructor is a great way to apply skills and education in a real-world setting. It can be rewarding to help students understand the material. Instructors may enjoy developing a curriculum and demonstrating their knowledge and passion for a topic.

Yes, on average, an instructor's salary is around $71,506 per year in the United States. Pay is based on education level, place of employment, and years of experience. Some academic institutions provide opportunities for advancement where instructors may earn up to $93,758 per year.

Challenges facing instructors include feeling uncomfortable with public speaking, interacting with a large number of students, and finding ways to clearly teach topics that can be hard to explain. It can also be difficult to deal with a constantly changing group of people.

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