Provost investigates NIU faculty salaries

By Dina Paluzzi

NIU Provost Kendall Baker and his staff are conducting an extensive study of faculty salaries at NIU and comparable universities hoping this analysis will help improve the issue of NIU faculty salaries.

Baker said the study will delve into the extent of the gap in faculty salary levels between NIU and other universities. “The overall concern is equity,” he said.

After information is collected comparing NIU faculty salaries to other universities’ salary levels, Baker then will formulate a program based on this information.

A tentative target date for a completed proposal is the fall of 1989, he said.

Information in the study also will address promotional salary increments for faculty. “Now the kinds of increments to faculty are not substantial,” he said, adding that promotional increments need to be improved.

Once the issue of promotional increments is addressed, however, a decision will have to be made concerning how to compensate faculty promoted earlier who did not receive any possible increment, he said.

While conducting the study, Baker will review national studies compiling salary levels at universities of NIU’s size. He also will review studies containing information on salaries in various universities departments.

Baker said, “The proposal will affect the entire university.” It will not be limited to specific departments. The results of the study will determine how the proposal will be presented, he said.

University Council Executive Secretary Judy Bischoff said Baker outlined some of his research when he spoke to the NIU Faculty Assembly on Oct. 5.

“It’s always good to have comparative data. Any information we have can’t hurt us,” she said.

At a Sept. 28 faculty assembly meeting, Board of Regents Chancellor Roderick Groves said the employees in the Regency system received the highest salary increases in Illinois this year.

NIU faculty received an 8.5 percent salary increase. Faculty at Illinois State University—another school in the Regency system—received pay increases between 6 and 7 percent. Faculty at the University of Illinois and Southern Illinois University, schools not in the Regency system, received salary increases between 6 and 7 percent.

NIU’s faculty salaries are still below the salaries of faculty at comparable universities, Baker said. For example, the difference between salaries of NIU accountancy faculty and the national average salary is about $20,000.