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This week we uploaded four online adjunct job opportunities from Miami Dade College. I was happy to find these four jobs as they ranged across several disciplines, meeting the needs of a larger swath of our AdjunctWorld community. But as I read the job description in preparation for writing our 500-character “Learn More” blurb, I noticed that the school was only hiring adjuncts who reside in the South Florida community, despite the classes themselves being fully online.

I decided to go ahead and post them anyway. We have over 10,000 members and I figured that a substantive proportion of you all just might live in South Florida and be interested in these positions. I made sure to put the residency requirement in the title of the job, so as not to mislead anyone.

Last week, I had uploaded a series of jobs, I believe from a Colorado school, in which Colorado residents were preferred, but in that instance residency wasn’t necessarily required. I made sure to mention that in the Learn More blurb.  In that situation, too, I figured a solid proportion of our members might live in Colorado.

I do not come across residency caveats much in my searches. It happens once in a blue moon.  The nature of online work is that you should be able to do it from virtually anywhere and most schools embrace it. Although, I suspect there are very good reasons why a select few schools have residency requirements.

We do also post some on-campus positions and make sure to label them as such. I myself do not actively seek these positions to post (there are way too many of them on the web), but we do have some school members who like uploading their own jobs to our site to tap into our eager pool of qualified adjunct instructors!  I do not consider this the same “issue” really.  I’m trying to figure out what do to about these geographically-bound online positions.

I guess, I write this to pose the question to you all. In a site where over 95% of the jobs listed are indeed online positions, do you think it’s appropriate to post geographically-bound online positions?  Help me figure this one out.  Don’t list?  List but make sure to mention it before you get much further in the application process? Would you mind getting an alert for an online job, at least once in a while, where the online job listed required you to live in a state you don’t live in?  Please, comment below with any input or suggestion!

8 Responses to “For South Florida Residents Only: Geographically-Bound Online Positions”


    I often think that the best online classes and best learning experiences occur when you have the most diverse faculty and students. By creating such restrictions based on geography, you limit diversity and learning. Hey, I teach geography classes online and I know this! My best online classes are with The University of the People because faculty and students come from all over the world, not just one small area of one state!

    • Brooke Shriner

      Thanks for writing, Brian! Yes, I agree. As we have learned from the Irish Potato Famine, diversity is the key to sustenance and life. “Planting” the same kind of instructor can limit what can grow. I don’t know if I’m doing this metaphor justice. Anyway! You teach for the University of the People – terrific! I’ve always wanted to chat with someone who teaches there as we post volunteer jobs for them all the time. Email me sometime to chat about your experience.

  2. Claude Bobin

    Dear Brooke,

    The idea of a geographically-bound online positions could be the wish of a Dean or a Dept Chair who might feel more comfortable with the opportunity to meet their on-line adjuncts face-to-face for a better communication from time to time.
    This being said, another option could be to make mandatory to spend a week at the University before teaching and coaching to learn the University culture and policy and get acquainted with faculty.
    I will argue this is not true.
    My personal experience:
    I personally taught with Norwich University on-line MBA program for seven years. Norwich is located in Vermont and at that time I was living in Los Angeles. I have never been to Vermont and I always had a wonderful communication with Norwich University faculty and administration.
    All the best,

    • Brooke Shriner

      Yes, in 2016 its strange to think that communication is the reason why colleges want their online instructors to live close. Especially in the distance learning arena where we believe internet and phone communication can yield excellent conversation when done right.

      But, I wouldn’t argue with going to visit a place – that would provide an opportunity for travel that I otherwise wouldn’t get. I went through the orientation process at a college in London once and was tickled to think I might get to visit!

  3. Austin W. Troxell, MSc.

    Last year I applied for an online “Evaluator” position listed on AdjunctWorld at Western Governor’s University. I interviewed extremely well and was at the point of being offered the position when my answer to one question on their final application form got me booted from consideration: ‘If offered this position, do you agree to not teach outside of the United States?’ I answered honestly: “No.” I was in the process of emigrating to South America and was searching for an online teaching opportunity to supplement my family’s income. Why did it matter that I would be conducting an ONLINE class from outside the USA? This should have been disclosed early in the process or even in the posting before I spent considerable time and effort applying, being interviewed, performing sample evaluations, completing numerous forms, etc. WGU never responded to my inquiry as to WHY I had to be a US resident to be one of their ‘Evaluators,’ which is a glorified paper-grader, not an actual teaching position.

    • Brooke Shriner

      I hear your frustration, Austin. If living in the US is a mandatory part of the job, that should be made clear in the job description before you even begin the application process. And, yes, the notion of having to be somewhere specific to teach online does make me scratch my head a little too. Makes me think that there is a legal, administrative, or accreditation-reason why they have this as a rule not so much an academic or job-related reason.

  4. Guy

    Brooke —

    I am grateful that you asked whether it’s appropriate to post position announcements that are limited by geography.

    My opinion is that you should post geographically-bound positions, indeed!

    It would be helpful to include the limitation in the top section of such announcements, but wise job seekers will still apply for those positions even if they don’t currently reside within those boundaries, as long as they’re interested and qualified.

    In some cases, smart hiring officials will reach out to hire excellent candidates even if they live outside the areas. In the virtual world, those boundaries are in most cases — i.e., except where local laws or regulations forbid the hiring of non-residents — arbitrary and unnecessary.

    On the other hand, if the positions are attractive enough, the interested instructors can always decide to move.


    • Brooke Shriner

      Thanks, Guy! I love your positive attitude! You made me smile from wherever it is you are writing from – which speaks to the impact of non-geographically-bound communication :) And, yes, I’ll continue to post and make sure to highlight the geography requirements early in the job description.


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