Balance work and life with a range of paid and unpaid leave arrangements.

Applying for leave

You can apply for most forms of leave via HR Online. However, for some forms of leave you will need to complete and submit an application form.

Apply online for ...

Apply via HR Online for:

  • annual leave (including taking purchase leave)
  • long service leave (full pay)
  • personal leave
  • community leave
  • leave without pay
  • education leave (exam and graduation leave).

To purchase additional annual leave, submit a request via askMQ.

View the HR Online User Guide (PDF) for step-by-step instructions on how to apply for leave, check and project leave balances, delete pending (unapproved) leave requests and reverse (cancel) an approved leave request.

Submit an application form for ...

  • Cashing out of annual leave – academic staff PDF
  • Cashing out of annual leave – professional staff PDF
  • Long service leave at half pay PDF
  • Parental and partner's leave PDF
  • Indigenous cultural leave PDF
  • Study time PDF

Leave options

Annual leave

Full-time staff members are entitled to 140 hours (four weeks) of annual leave per calendar year. Part-time staff will accrue annual leave on a proportionate basis. On termination of employment, any outstanding annual leave balance will be paid out.

Eligible staff may apply to cash out an amount of their annual leave. Refer to the Annual leave policy for further information on cashing out annual leave.

For more information:

Purchased annual leave

All academic and professional staff employed on a continuing basis or on fixed-term contracts greater than 12 months may purchase additional leave in a 12-month period, funded by a reduction in salary. 

Purchased leave must be taken within the specified 12-month period and will not attract annual leave loading. Any remaining purchased leave accrued at the end of the 12-month period will be refunded to the staff member.

To apply to purchase additional annual leave, complete the Purchased Leave Application Form.

For more information:

Long service leave

The purpose of long service leave is to recognise a staff member’s length    of continuous service at the University.

A full-time staff member will become eligible for long service leave after 10 years full-time continuous service. Part-time staff members will accrue long service leave on a proportionate basis of the full-time continuous service entitlement. Casual staff who have completed ten years’ continuous service with Macquarie University will be eligible for long service leave.

Staff who have previously worked for another Australian university may be eligible to have their prior service recognised for the purpose of determining long    service leave eligibility. To check if you are eligible contact your Payroll Advisor.

For more information:

Personal leave

All continuing and fixed-term staff are entitled to personal leave. Personal leave is separated into two categories:

  • sick leave (including illness, injury and incapacity of a staff member; and may include domestic violence situations)
  • other personal leave (including care of a family member, compassionate grounds/bereavement, or moving to a new residence).

On commencement with the University, full-time staff will be credited with ten weeks of personal leave (seven weeks of sick leave and three weeks of personal leave) and will accrue an additional three weeks of personal leave per year, up to a maximum of 52 weeks. Part-time staff will be credited with a proportionate basis of the full-time entitlement.

For more information:

Parental leave and partner’s leave

The University provides parental leave to eligible staff in respect of the birth of a child to them or their partner, or the placement of a child with a view to adoption, or foster parenting arrangements. The eligibility and entitlement to parental leave is prescribed by the relevant Enterprise Agreement.

A staff member who wishes to access parental or partner's leave is required to submit the Parental Leave form and provide written notification and supporting documentation indicating the anticipated date of birth, or evidence of the date on which a new child will be taken into care for adoption. Send the approved form to your payroll advisor.

Parental leave

On commencement with the University, full-time staff members who are the primary carer will be eligible for 14 weeks of paid parental leave. Full time staff members who have completed more than one year of continuous service will be entitled to an additional 12 weeks of paid parental leave. Part-time staff will be entitled to paid parental leave on a proportional basis of the full-time entitlement. Eligible long-term casual staff members will be entitled to paid parental leave on a proportionate basis of the full-time arrangement.

Partner’s leave

A full-time, fixed-term or continuing staff member whose partner is pregnant will be eligible for a maximum of four weeks paid partner’s leave at the time of the birth or adoption of the child. The staff member will also be eligible for an additional four weeks of unpaid partner’s leave. Part-time staff members will be entitled to paid partner’s leave on a proportional basis.

For more information

Religious, cultural and ceremonial leave

All fixed-term and continuing staff are eligible to apply for an applicable form of leave (annual leave, flexible work arrangement, leave without pay) for observance of holy days or attendance at religious, cultural or ceremonial duties associated with the staff member’s faith or culture.

Indigenous staff are entitled to up to five days' paid leave and ten days' leave without pay per year to fulfil ceremonial obligations, and one day per year to participate in National Day celebrations.

For more information:

Community service leave

All continuing and fixed-term staff may be eligible to access community leave to enable them to perform a service to the community. Community leave may be taken for living organ donation schemes, jury service, attendance as a witness, volunteer emergency services and defence force leave.

For more information:

Community volunteering leave

All continuing staff are eligible to access community volunteering leave to contribute to just, inclusive and sustainable societies through activities with local communities. Community volunteering leave allows staff to partner with authorised organisations and groups in the community including non-profit organisations and charitable groups.

Community volunteering leave can be booked in HR Online under the Personal Leave - Other menu.

For more information:

Education leave

Graduation ceremony leave

All continuing and fixed-term staff undertaking an approved course of study will be entitled to one half-day of paid leave to attend their graduation ceremony within the Sydney metropolitan area and one day of paid leave to attend their graduation ceremony outside of the Sydney metropolitan area.

Study time

Continuing and fixed-term professional staff may be eligible for study time. Eligibility will be based on the relevance of the course of study to the staff member’s current or potential employment with Macquarie University.

Examination leave

Continuing and fixed-term professional staff undertaking an approved course of study will be allowed up to ten days paid examination leave in any one academic year. Leave will be granted on the basis of two days leave for each subject in which the staff member has a formal examination.

For more information:

Deferred salary scheme

The Deferred Salary Scheme (DSS) allows staff to defer the payment of a proportion of their pre-tax salary for three years, before accessing a continuous paid absence of 24 weeks, funded by their accumulated deferred salary. Staff can use the absence for any reason, provided there is no conflict of interest with their duties and role at Macquarie University.

Applications to participate in the DSS are open from Monday 1 June to Friday 12 June 2020. Absence periods will start in July 2023. To apply, log into HR Online, select My Administration -> Forms. Click Find and select Respond for the Deferred Salary Scheme application June 2020.

How does it work?

Participants will reduce their salary by approximately 15% for a continuous period of three years before taking a single paid absence of 24 weeks, funded by their accumulated deferred salary payments. During the deduction period, participants will be able to view their accruing DSS balance on their fortnightly pay slip and in the Leave Balances section in HR Online.

During the period of absence, participants will be paid in the standard fortnightly pay cycle. However, participants can elect to have the full period of absence paid in advance by selecting the ‘Pay in advance’ option at application stage.

Eligibility and application

Applications to participate in the DSS will be accepted from continuing professional and academic staff members of the University. Part-time staff, and staff within their probation periods are also eligible to apply.

Applications to participate in the scheme will be open for a limited time twice a year, in April/May (salary deductions to commence in July) and October/November (salary deductions to commence in January). Your period of absence will commence in January or July three years after your salary deductions begin.

How to apply

Applications to participate in the DSS are open from Monday 1 June to Friday 12 June 2020. Absence periods will start in July 2023.

To apply, log into HR Online, select My Administration -> Forms. Click Find and select Respond for the Deferred Salary Scheme application June 2020.

Next steps

After the application round closes, Human Resources will collate applications and confirm approvals. If the volume of applications from a single work unit will impact on the operational needs of the work unit, consideration will be given on how to proceed. This could include discussions with applicants about the possibility of taking the absence at another time, or other ways to accommodate the absence.

Successful applicants will be issued a formal offer for their participation, outlining the terms of the scheme, the immediate impact on salary, and requiring formal acceptance, in order to commence the necessary salary adjustments.

Impact on your pay, super and leave

Your pre-tax salary will be reduced in each fortnightly pay cycle for a three-year span. When your period of absence occurs, your salary will be funded from the payments previously deferred, and will be taxed accordingly.

Salary loading or allowance payments may also be impacted, depending on the nature of the allowance. As a general rule, fixed salary, loading and allowance (e.g. HDA's, market loadings, position loadings) deductions deferred during the three-year deduction period will be paid to you during your period of absence. Variable loadings (e.g. shift penalties) will not be subject to deduction and will not be paid during absence.

The impact on your super will vary depending on your individual circumstances. As a general guide for UniSuper members, contributions will be pro-rated based on your post deduction salary and will be reflected as an adjustment to your service fraction as reported by UniSuper. Contributions to your super will continue during the absence period.

Leave accruals will be impacted differently during the different phases of the DSS. During the deduction period, leave will be accrued as normal. During the absence period, leave will not be accrued.

Before finalising your participation in the DSS, you will be provided a calculation outlining the impact of deferred payments on your income. Staff are encouraged to seek independent financial advice prior to finalising participation in the scheme.

Employment changes and withdrawals

If your employment fraction changes during the deduction period, your payment during the period of absence will be adjusted to reflect the change.

A staff member can withdraw from the DSS within 28 days of the period of absence commencing. If a staff member withdraws from the DSS or leaves the University before accessing their absence, the balance of the deferred salary amount will be reimbursed to them in the next available pay period.

During your absence

As a self-funded absence, participants will be unable to access additional existing leave entitlements during the absence period.

In order for work units to manage the arrangements for an extended absence, participating staff will be expected to utilise the entirety of the planned absence, and will not be able to return to work early.

Need more help?

For general leave enquiries contact your HR representative. Contact your payroll advisor for help with your leave balances, accruals and payments.

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