There continues to be differences in the average salaries across sex at most institutions. Men continue to earn more than women at most institutions, particularly at the ranks of full and assistant professor.
Across ranks, professors in architecture, engineering and related technologies have the highest average earnings at $142,775, while professors in personal, protective and transportation services have the lowest average earnings at $108,500.
This table reports salary minima and maxima by institution and rank for full-time university teachers in Canada.
Salary stipends for per course instructors remain far below equivalent compensation for regular teaching faculty. Stipend amounts also vary significantly by institution. In 2016-2017, across 60 institutions for which data was reported, per course stipends midpoints (the average of the lowest and highest stipend amount) ranged from a low of $5,175 at Memorial University of Newfoundland to a high of $10,017 at Queen’s University at Kingston. Over 2014-2015 to 2016-2017, across 58 institutions reporting data, per course stipend amounts increased the slowest at Bishop’s University, Université Laval and OCAD University (+1.0%). The highest increase over this period was at University of Guelph (+19.2%), followed by University of Lethbridge (+16.8%) and Saint Paul University (+16.0%).
3.5 Average Salaries of University Professors, College Instructors, and All Occupations by Sex and Labour Force Activity, 2005 and 2015
Census data shows an increasing inequality in the academic labour market. Full-time and/or full-year university teachers and college instructors earned about +10% above the rate of inflation over 2005-2015 on average, with women university teachers making the largest gains as a group (+14%). The situation was not so rosy for more precariously employed academics. Annual employment earnings of part-time and/or part-year (PTPY) university teachers actually declined in real terms from $64,420 to $63,251 over this ten-year period. Further, PTPY women university teachers earned significantly less in real terms, with average incomes declining from $62,224 in 2005 to $57,353 in 2015.
3.6 Average Salaries of Full-time Permanent Women University Professors, College and Other Vocational Instructors, and All Occupations, 1998-2014
Full-time and/or full-year (FTFY) women university teachers have only marginally decreased their pay gap with FTFY men, with the percentage of men’s salary earned by women growing only slightly from 82% in 2005 to 84% in 2015. Women college instructors also made only slight progress in closing the wage gap (though they also began the period with much greater income equality), increasing from 87% to 88% over the same period.
3.7 Average Earnings of Racialized and Aboriginal University Teachers and College Instructors by Sex, 2015
Men university teachers on average earned 8.2% above the average salary while women earned 10.7% less in 2015. Almost every group of racialized and Aboriginal women and men university teachers earned less than the average for all workers of all sexes, with the exception of Southeast Asian men (+4.1%) and Chinese men (+2.0%). Otherwise, the wage gap ranged from -0.9% for South Asian men to -41.4% for Latin American women. Non-racialized university professors received 2.9% above the average for all workers, rising to +12.3% for all non-racialized men.
Among college instructors, all groups of racialized and Aboriginal women (with the exception of Inuk women), earned less than the average for all workers, typically in the double-digits. Racialized male instructors (with the exception of Japanese men) also all earn less than the average worker, also tending to the double-digits. First Nations, Métis and Inuk men all earned more than the average worker, in contrast to Aboriginal women (excepting Inuk women).
Librarianship remains a feminized profession, with the pattern persisting among younger cohorts. In 2014-2015, about three-quarters (73.2%) of librarians were women. All three under-40 librarian age groups (<30, 30-34, and 35-39) reported higher-than-average proportions of women to men. Nonetheless, for those institutions that reported age-based salary data, male academic librarians earn higher salaries than their female counterparts ($96,067 vs. $94,831 in 2014-2015), with an especially pronounced difference among men and women in the 65+ age group ($133,211 vs. $117,591).
Throughout 2014-2015 to 2016-2017, Quebec reported the lowest average salaries for librarians, followed by Atlantic region. The highest average salaries were found in Ontario, followed by the Western region. Quebec had average salaries of $84,205 in 2014-2015, increasing by almost 5% in real terms to $89,868 in 2016-2017. Atlantic Canada reported much more tepid real growth at just under 1%, from $88,141 to $90,786; while Western Canada reported a slight decline in real terms, with average salaries increasing from $93,556 only to $95.260.
Average salaries for librarians vary significantly across the country. In 2014-2015, for all institutions reporting salary data by rank, average salaries ranged from a low of $60,311 at the Atlantic School of Theology to a high of $128,316 at Trent University. For universities with four-rank salary structures, average salaries for Full Librarians ranged from a low of $86,730 at the University of Northern British Columbia up to a high of $146,129 at Trent University. Average salaries for Full Librarians ranged from a low of $57,046 at the University of Winnipeg to a high of $86,467 at Queen’s University.
Salary structures of academic and professional librarians in Canada’s universities vary significantly – especially compared to regular teaching faculty. Conversely, in the college sector, librarians are typically on the same salary scale as instructors and other academic staff. As with average salaries, rank minima and maxima for librarians also vary considerably by institutions with four-rank salary structures. Among 30 such universities, the lowest rank minima for top-rank librarians ranged from a low of $77,595 for Librarian IVs at the University of Northern British Columbia to a high of $111,931 for Professional Associate IVs at Brandon University in 2014-2015.
Inflation-adjusted growth in average salaries for librarians stagnated in the 2010s, growing only slightly from $97,576 in 2010-2011 to $97,881 in 2016-2017 ($ 2016). In 2016-2017, librarian salaries as a percentage of those of full-time university teachers reached its lowest level in 20 years (74.4%).
The percentage of women in tenured positions ranges from 14.3% to 97.2%. Where reported, the percentage of women in positions leading to tenure ranges from 27.3% to 66.7%. In other types of positions, the percentage of women ranges from 28.6% to 100%.
This table shows the number of full-time university teachers by sex and subject taught for the 2016-2017 academic year.
This table shows the number of full-time university teachers by age, sex and subject taught for the 2016-2017 academic year.
From 1970 to 2017, there was a general decline in the number of new appointments at Canadian universities and colleges. In 1970, 15.8% of total appointments were new appointments made in that same year. Faculty renewal rates reached a low of 3.6% in 1996 before rising and falling again over the succeeding two decades. In 2010, the faculty renewal rate was 4.5%, rising slightly to 4.8% by 2017.
3.18 Adult Population, PhD Attainment, University Professors and College Instructors by Visible Minority, Aboriginal Identity and Sex, 2016
Data from the Census shows that representation rates of equity-seeking groups among PhD holders and professors vary significantly. Overall averages across all visible minorities can mask important differences among different groups. Visible minorities overall account for 21.2% of the adult workforce, and 21.1% of university professors, while accounting for 31.1% of PhD holders.
Some racialized groups make up a greater proportion of the professoriate than they do of the population as a whole, suggesting over-representation, but this proportion may be significantly less than the proportion of PhD holders that are members of that same racialized group. For example, Chinese Canadians and non-permanent residents account for 4.31% of the population aged 25+, 5.65% of university professors and 10% of PhD holders. By contrast, the dominant non-racialized group (non- visible minority and non-Aboriginal adults) accounts for a greater proportion of the professoriate relative to their total numbers (77.6% vs. 75.1%) while also having a lower proportion of PhD holders (68%), revealing a double inequity. Women are represented at less than their share of the adult workforce among the professoriate (43.9% vs. 48.0%), but at a higher rate than their share of the pool of PhD holders (39.1%).
Underrepresentation of visible minority groups is more generalized among college instructors, with significantly more Aboriginal representation among college instructors than among the professoriate. 14.4% of college instructors are visible minorities and 3.0% identify as Aboriginal, which are both significantly less than their share of the adult workforce (21.2% and 3.8% respectively).
Both university teachers and college instructors deviate from the modern norm of 50/50 gender representation in the labour market, but in different ways. Over 1997-2017, men made up on average about three-fifths of full-time, full-year and part-time and/or part-year university teachers combined. A growing majority of college instructors are women, 56.5% in 2017.
3.20 University Teachers, College Instructors and All Occupations by Designated Group and Work Activity, 2015 and 2016
Among the designated groups in the employed labour force for whom data is available through the Census, all had rates of part-time and/or part-year (PTPY) employment that were higher than the average for the total population aged 25+. Of all three groups (women, visible minorities and Aboriginal peoples), visible minorities had the highest PTPY employment rates for university teachers, college instructors and the employed labour force alike. PTPY employment rates of both university teachers and college instructors are significantly higher for members of these three designated groups than in the employed labour force as a whole.
According to data from the most recent Census (2016), a significantly higher proportion of the professoriate (16.6%) are not Canadian citizens, compared to the labour market as a whole (7.5%) and compared to college instructors (5.5%). For men university teachers, the proportion increases to 18.2%. A slightly higher (6% vs. 5%) proportion of women college instructors are not Canadian citizens compared to their male counterparts, in contrast to both university teachers and Canadian workforce.
3.22 University Teachers, College Instructors and All Occupations by Immigrant Status, Period of Immigration and Place of Birth, 2016
The immigrant status of university teachers and of college instructors follow a pattern similar to that for citizenship (3.23). Immigrants account for 37.1% of the professoriate and post-doctoral fellows in 2016, while non-permanent residents account for 6.5%, figures significantly higher than for all employees aged 25+, at 25.6% and 1.4% respectively. On the other hand, immigrants comprise only 21.9% and non-permanent residents only 0.8% of college instructors.
In terms of period of immigration, 16.8% of immigrant university teachers being landed in 2011-2016, compared to 12.6% for college instructors and 14.4% for immigrants in all occupations. Both university teachers and college instructors had a larger proportion of immigrants from before 1981, at 22.1% and 27.5% respectively, compared to an average for immigrants in all occupations of 19.2%.
Academic employment is more precarious than typical in the Canadian labour market. The proportion of university professors reporting permanent (continuing appointments) declined from a peak of 78.5% in 1999 before dropping to a level of 65.9% in 2004 before increasing again, coming to a level of 71.0% in 2017. There was a more pronounced trend in declining permanent employment among college instructors, from a peak of 80.1% in 1998 down to 71.6% in 2017. However, permanency among the employed workforce as a whole remained both higher and relatively constant over the same period: from 88.7% in 1997 down to a low of 86.3% in 2017.
The long-term trend over the past three decades in Canada has been a decline in the overall unemployment rate among members of the experienced labour force, from a peak of 11.4% in 1993 down to a low of 6.0% in 2007, jumping up to 8.3% in 2009 before declining again to a low of 6.3% in 2017. University professors and lecturers who were employed as such within the previous year generally experienced only frictional unemployment, averaging about 3% over the 1987-2017 period. College instructors have seen a long-term decline in unemployment rates to those which are now more in line with university professors.
Not in the labour force (NILF) rates among the experienced academic labour force have remained fairly constant over the long term. Overall NILF rates for college instructors has evidenced a slight decline over time, from a level of about 8% at the outset of the period to about 6% at the end of it. NILF rates for university professors fluctuate between 6% and 10% over 1987-2017 though the trend line shows stability, averaging close to 8% at both the beginning and end of this period.
3.25 Unemployment and Not in The Labour Force Rates of University Teachers, College Instructors and All Occupations by Designated Group, 2016
Data from the most recent Census (2016) shows that unemployment rates for women (5.7%), visible minority (6.7%), and Aboriginal (6.3%) university teachers are all higher than those for university teachers as a whole (4.9%). Among college instructors, women and men reported the same unemployment rate (4.8%), while visible minorities (7.4%) and Aboriginal peoples (6.9%) had higher rates. Conversely, among the active labour force as a whole, women had a lower unemployment rate than for the total population aged 25+ (4.1% vs. 4.8%), visible minorities had about the same rate (4.9%), while Aboriginal peoples had the highest rate (9.9%).
Women university teachers had higher than average NILF rates (9.8% vs. 9.3%), as well as women workers in general (7.7% vs. 6.9%). Visible minority workers in all three occupational groups had lower than average not in the labour force (NILF) rates. Aboriginal workers who are university teachers had lower than average NILF rates (8.1% vs. 9.3%), but otherwise had higher rates.
Labour force survey data shows that over the past two decades, women have made steady gains in representation among the permanent full-time academic workforce, including in comparison to the more anemic growth in women’s share of these jobs across all occupations. In fact, women now account for 52.1% (2017) of all permanent full-time college instructors. At the same time, women have made significant progress in representation among the ranks of regular academic staff, but still remain only about 40% of permanent full-time university teachers.
3.27 Temporary Full-time and Temporary or Permanent Part-time University Teachers, College Instructors and All Occupations by Sex
Women make up the greater share of the temporary full-time and part-time employed workforce today (60% in 2017). This is also true for college and other vocational instructors (62.5%). Women account for about half of such university teachers (49.3%).