To become an adjunct professor, you usually need a bachelor's degree and 4-6 years of experience. The most common jobs before becoming an adjunct professor are teacher, internship, and instructor. Hiring managers expect an adjunct professor to have soft skills such as interpersonal skills, speaking skills, and writing skills. Once you have all the required skills and experience, it takes an average of 1-3 months of job training to become an adjunct professor.

The national average salary for adjunct professors is $98,821, but with the right certifications and experience, they can make up to $219,000. Getting a certification as a Basic Life Support for Healthcare and Public Safety (BLS) will help you to earn more as an adjunct professor.

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 11% and produce 155,000 job opportunities across the U.S.

How to become an Adjunct Professor in 6 steps:

  • Step 1: Explore adjunct professor education
  • Step 2: Develop adjunct professor skills
  • Step 3: Complete relevent training/internship
  • Step 4: Get adjunct professor certifications
  • Step 5: Research adjunct professor duties
  • Step 6: Prepare your resume

Key Steps To Become an Adjunct Professor

  1. Explore Adjunct Professor Education

    If you're interested in becoming an adjunct professor, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 49.0% of adjunct professors have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 33.3% of adjunct professors have master's degrees. Even though most adjunct professors have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

    Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become an adjunct professor. When we researched the most common majors for an adjunct professor, we found that they most commonly have business, psychology and education.

    Adjunct Professor Degrees


    49.0 %


    33.3 %


    10.8 %

    Adjunct Professor MajorPercentages
    Other Degrees63.50%

  2. Develop Adjunct Professor Skills

    It'll be a good idea to develop adjunct professor skills before applying for a job. Here are some skills commonly requested in adjunct professor job descriptions:

    Course Curriculum11.41%
    Student Learning4.29%

  3. Complete Relevent Training/Internship

    Adjunct professors spend an average of 1-3 months on post-employment, on-the-job training. During this time, new adjunct professors learn the skills and techniques required for their specific job and employer. The chart below shows how much time it takes to gain competency as an adjunct professor based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data and data from real adjunct professor resumes.

    Average Amount Of Time At Training


    Less than 1 month

    1-3 months

    3-6 months

    6-12 months

    1-2 years

  4. Get Adjunct Professor Certifications

    Certifications can show employers you have a baseline of knowledge expected for this position. They can also make you a more competitive candidate. Even if employers don't require a certification, having one may help you stand out in an application. Plus, the process of getting a certification can teach you new skills that you can bring to your work. We determined the most common certifications for adjunct professors. The most common certification is Basic Life Support for Healthcare and Public Safety (BLS), but Certified Professional - Human Resource (IPMA-CP) is also frequently seen in adjunct professors resumes.

    1. Basic Life Support for Healthcare and Public Safety (BLS)
    2. Certified Professional - Human Resource (IPMA-CP)
    3. Certified Professional Counselor
    4. Project Management Professional (PMP)
    5. Microsoft Certified Educator (MCE)
    6. IT Information Library Foundations Certification (ITIL)
    7. Certified Management Accountant (CMA)
    8. Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP)

    More About Certifications

  5. Research Adjunct Professor Duties

    When you decide to become an adjunct professor, It's important to know what duties and responsibilities are required for this position. Some common responsibilities are a part of most adjunct professor jobs. Here is a list of the main duties that define the role:

    • Lead outreach to community and statewide stakeholders in the PPCC entrepreneurship program.
    • Develop and prepare class syllabus and teaching materials for strategic management, business and government ethics, and organizational behavior classes.
    • Provide instruction/guidance for nursing students; deliver didactic lectures on human anatomy and physiology.
    • Identify course objectives, design syllabus, develop all instructional activities and materials, including written exams.
    • Facilitate courses in communications, economics, leadership, management, corporate finances, strategic planning and organizational behavior.
    • Develop and teach course curriculum on the subject of exercise science and clinical pharmacology to athletic training students.

  6. Prepare Your Resume

    Finally, when you already have checked the skills and responsibilities for this role, you can start creating your resume. Everything that goes into creating a perfect resume can take hours, days, or even weeks. No worries, we created a resume builder to make this process as easy as possible with tips and examples of skills, responsibilities, and a summary.

    Choose From 10+ Customizable Adjunct Professor Resume templates

    Build a professional Adjunct Professor resume in minutes. Browse through our resume examples to identify the best way to word your resume. Then choose from 10+ resume templates to create your Adjunct Professor resume.

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  7. Apply For an Adjunct Professor Job

    With your ready resume, it's time to start searching for a new job. Consider the tips below for a successful job search:

    1. Browse job boards for relevant postings
    2. Consult your professional network
    3. Reach out to companies you're interested in working for directly
    4. Watch out for job scams

    Adjunct Professor Jobs

  8. How To Become an Adjunct Professor
    How To Become an Adjunct Professor Career Overview

Average Salary for an Adjunct Professor

Adjunct Professors in America make an average salary of $98,821 per year or $48 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $219,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $44,000 per year.
Average Adjunct Professor Salary
$98,821 Yearly
$47.51 hourly

What Am I Worth?