Posted by & filed under Subject Matter Expert.

Ask an adjunct about the ratio of online jobs to online teachers seeking those jobs and she’ll let out a sigh of exasperation.  Ask one who teaches within a popular discipline, like psychology and business, and he’ll do the same with an added eye roll for effect.  This is the position we find ourselves in—many, many qualified, willing online instructors scouring over the same lists of online jobs available.

We at are tireless in our efforts to alert adjunct instructors to the most up-to-date listings of online teaching jobs.  This goes a long way toward making the search easier.  But we adjuncts are equally tireless in our quest for money-making opportunities that utilize our academic expertise and passion for our subject and allow us to do what we do best for students.

Subject Matter Expert (SME) jobs provide this additional opportunity.  You may have seen some of these jobs listed on  Recently, we posted several positions from, a service that takes traditional college courses and revamps them to be more engaging, interactive, and accessible to anyone.  Services such as this rely on SMEs in a wide-variety of academic areas to create their course content.  Many universities have their own content development/course design departments as well and also have a need for SMEs. These companies and departments regularly hire Master’s and Doctoral level academics to help them bring source material to life and to keep their courses current and, obviously, accurate.

When Matt and I search the web for online adjunct opportunities, we also search for SME positions.  If you see one in your discipline—click on it.  Because if you are an adjunct, you are, in fact, a subject matter expert.  Likely, a very qualified one with the energy and interest to do just what content companies and online academic programs need good people to do.

Have you ever worked as a subject matter expert?  What was the experience like for you?  Have questions or comments about SME work?  Leave a comment below!


Related posts:

What is a Subject Matter Expert (SME)?

Four Benefits of Being a Subject Matter Expert (SME)

Four (More) Benefits of Being a Subject Matter Expert (SME)

4 Responses to “Subject Matter Expert: Another Money-Making Opportunity for Adjuncts”

  1. Mel Wilson

    Brooke, is there a mentorship or training program for people like me who want to become a SME? I would like to explore the possibility some more. Sounds challenging to me. I have been teaching online for a couple of years now. I enjoy it, but I think I could do better designing some of the courses I’ve been teaching!

    • Brooke Shriner

      In my experience, Mel, they kinda train you on the way. They want people who can write and who are experts in their field. Above and beyond that, each company that wants an SME has their own system that they will train you on. You will also work closely with an instructional designer who will serve as your mentor.

  2. Christina

    This does sound interesting. Since the colleges I work for don’t offer as many classes to adjuncts in the spring, I am looking for yet another part-time job. Any idea on where to look for these positions?

    • Brooke Shriner

      They usually pop up in the same places as the teaching jobs do – so you’ll see SME jobs on Adjunctworld and other job boards :)


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