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Your compensation is comprised of a full package of benefits which includes an honorarium (payment) for teaching, travel and lodging expenses, a bonus for high attendance, and a free conference registration that provides full access to the conferences and events at the SPIE event you instruct at.

For specific details about compensation, please contact Laura Sharik, SPIE Course Coordinator Lead. Your Short Course Instructor Agreement (contract), which lists the exact payment terms for the course, will arrive 4-6 weeks following final confirmation of your course at a SPIE event. Your payment, as designated on your contract, will be mailed from SPIE headquarters approximately 3-4 weeks following the presentation of your course.

If you are a first-time instructor for SPIE, you will also need to submit an IRS W-9 form before we can issue payment. If you are a non-U.S.-based instructor, additional forms may be necessary. More information, including PDF downloads of the necessary forms, is available at the Tax Information & Reporting Income page.

Fee Waiver

When courses are scheduled in conjunction with an SPIE symposium, a complimentary registration to all technical sessions is provided to instructors. This waiver does not include Proceedings volumes, which will need to be ordered separately if you wish to receive a copy. This fee waiver typically represents a savings to instructors of $500-$700.

Travel and Lodging

Course instructors are expected to make their own reservations for both airfare and lodging. SPIE cannot guarantee accommodations for you, but if you have difficulty, please contact us and we can often accommodate requests. For information on the official event hotel, please see the Advance program PDF or website for the event you are teaching at.You are strongly encouraged to make your reservations as early in the process as possible. In the event your course is cancelled due to insufficient advance registration, SPIE will reimburse you for nonrefundable airfare and/or hotel expenses.

Reporting Expenses

Please see the Tax Information & Reporting Income page for information about submitting expenses.

Government employees

If you are employed by a government agency that does not allow you to accept payment for your service as an instructor, please let us know so we can prepare a contract without financial terms for you. This applies to the honorarium (payment), expenses, or both.


To encourage instructors to help SPIE promote their courses, we are glad to offer a bonus to those whose courses attract a large audience. Bonuses are based on a per student rate for those courses that have more than 30 attendees.

Money Back

Continuing Education Units

IACET Authorzed Provider
SPIE is accredited by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) and is authorized to issue the IACET CEU.

2019 Salary Report