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By Jennifer Johnson, Forum News Service, Published April 11 2013

Report: UND, NDSU salaries lagging

GRAND FORKS – The salaries that the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks and North Dakota State University pay its professors are among the nation’s lowest, according to a higher education report released Monday.

The American Association of University Professors compared the average salaries paid at 215 public and private research universities, and North Dakota’s two flagship institutions ranked among the bottom 20 percent.

UND professors make an average of $99,000 per year, while NDSU professors make $103,200. The national average for professors at all universities, including nonresearch universities, was $123,393, based on numbers reported by 1,142 institutions.

However, the average salary of instructional faculty at UND is slightly better. The average is $51,800, among the 50 to 64 percentile for public universities nationwide, according to the report.

NDSU instructional faculty earn a little less at $47,700, among the 35 to 50 percentile for public universities nationwide, according to the report. The national average for instructors at all universities is $48,359.

Instructional faculty were defined in the report as those who instruct at least 50 percent of the time and have contracts for the entire academic year, regardless if they were considered permanent or not.

UND spokesman Peter Johnson said salaries there have been historically low, dipping to 42.67 percent below the national average in 2002.

“Salaries are 80-some percent of our total budget, and that’s not just faculty salaries,” he said. “It just takes some time to try to address those issues.”

A committee was formed several years ago in part to address the salary and compensation issue, which was the university’s way of stressing the importance of increasing both for all instructors, he said.

Nationwide, faculty salaries are also a problem, AAUP said in its report.

“Our analysis this year indicates that after three years of increases in average salary levels that lagged behind the rate of inflation, the overall increase this year matched the increase in consumer prices – but only just barely,” the report said.