Academic workloads

Academic workloads



18.1 The following clauses apply to all fixed term and continuing Staff who have teaching and teaching-related duties, except where otherwise specified.

Development of Faculty Workload Models

Committee Composition

18.2 The Executive Dean will form a Workload Committee to develop the Workload Model for the Faculty (Faculty Workload Model). The Committee will have a representative from each Department/School in the Faculty, with no more than 50% of the Committee being Heads of Department, Deputy Heads of Department or Faculty Associate Deans.

18.3 To form the Workload Committee, the Executive Dean will seek expressions of interest from the Faculty and appoint the Committee members with an aim of ensuring diversity of representation, including by gender, level and discipline. Where there are no expressions of interest from a Department/School, or in cases of unplanned absences, the Dean may appoint an alternate representative.

Draft Model

18.4 The Workload Committee will develop a draft Faculty Workload Model consistent with the principles set out in this clause. It is the role of Committee members to seek input from their Department throughout this process, including through normal department processes (e.g. Department meetings).

18.5 The draft Faculty Workload Model developed by the Workload Committee will be provided to Academic Staff in the Faculty and ASIC for consultation and input. Staff will normally be provided with a period of two weeks to review the model and provide feedback.

Recommended Model

18.6 Feedback will be provided to the Workload Committee. Following consideration of the feedback and any amendments, the Workload Committee will provide a recommended Faculty Workload Model to the Executive Dean for consideration and approval.

Final Model

18.7 The Executive Dean is responsible for approving the Faculty Workload Model. In doing so, the Executive Dean must consider the recommendations of the Workload Committee and any feedback from Academic Staff in the Faculty and from ASIC. The Executive Dean will publish the final Faculty Workload Model on the Faculty intranet, including any Departmental variations.

18.8 Where necessary, and to accommodate disciplinary differences across departments Faculty Workload Models may include variations in the components of the model. In order to maintain parity across departments, such variations will be subject to review by the Workload Committee and approval by the Executive Dean.

Essential Components of a Faculty Workload Model

18.9 A Faculty Workload Model must:

(a) include specific time-based allocations for core teaching activities as listed below:

(i) preparation and delivery of classroom, online, laboratory, clinical and field teaching activities and resources. This includes creating or updating existing teaching activities and resources;

(ii) marking of assessment tasks and examinations and providing feedback on assessment tasks to students;

(iii) student consultation, either face-to-face or via email (or other online platform);

(iv) fulfilling requirements of the unit convenor role;

(b) include allocations or values for HDR Supervision noting that a Faculty Workload Model may count this activity towards teaching and/or research;

(c) include specific time-based allocations for key Faculty level service roles. The Workload Committee will determine what those key service roles are;

(d) include limits (not norms) for each of the following:

(i) face-to-face contact hours;

(ii) hours of lectures or online equivalent per week, where the Staff Member:

- is teaching a unit for the first time;

- has delivered equivalent lectures in a previous offering of the same unit (repeat delivery);

- has delivered the same lecture in the current offering of a unit (repeat lecture);

(iii) total number of lecture hours, in any week, averaged over the teaching weeks;

(iv) expected hours of interaction with students in online units or components of units;

(v) expected marking loads;

(vi) the number of research degree students and/or coursework research projects that a Staff Member supervises; and

(e) the number of units coordinated per session, averaged over a year (this may include specification of the level and/or size of units)

Optional Components of a Faculty Workload Model

18.10 A Faculty Workload Model may:

(a) in addition to core teaching activities, include allocations for any other applicable teaching activities in the Faculty. Examples of other teaching activities are set out at Schedule 6 – Lists of Academic Activities;

(b) include elements and expectations relating to research, service and outreach (including professional outreach) activities;

(c) in addition to the key Faculty/University level service roles, include elements and expectations relating to service;

(d) include block, offshore, vacation or evening teaching;

(e) include any other relevant activities.

Variation of Faculty Workload Models

18.11 The Faculty Workload Models will normally apply for 3 years. Where an Executive Dean wishes to make minor changes during this period, including any Departmental variations, the Executive Dean should seek input from the Workload Committee and from ASIC. If major changes are proposed by the Executive Dean, the process set out in subclauses 18.2 – 18.8 for development of the model will apply. The model to be applied each year will be published by the end of the preceding year.

Individual Workload Allocation

18.12 Workload allocation processes will be transparent, consultative, equitable and reasonable.

18.13 An annual written workload allocation will be developed for each Staff Member by their Supervisor following consultation between the Supervisor and the Staff Member. The written allocation will specify the workload that the Staff Member will be undertaking in the coming academic year, including the proportions of each workload component.

18.14 In setting the workload, the Supervisor will seek to balance the interests of the Staff Member and the University, having regard to the following considerations:

(a) the Staff Member’s job family, including the default allocations and permitted variations set out below;

(b) the Staff Member’s preferences, abilities, stage of career/academic level and career plans;

(c) the Staff Member’s research plans and level of research activity;

(d) the needs of the Department and Faculty relating to teaching, research and service commitments;

(e) any special appointments – e.g. appointment to a research only position or leadership appointments such as teaching leadership, research leadership or administrative leadership;

(f) the Staff Member’s personal circumstances, including equity considerations, leave plans (including the impact of extended leave such as parental leave), return to work plans and reasonable accommodations for disability or carer’ responsibilities.

18.15 Each Staff Member will be given a schedule showing their workload allocation and that of all Staff Members in the Department for the academic year (or session). The full schedule of workload allocations for each Department is to be published within the Department.

Review of Individual Workload Allocation

18.16 If an individual is not satisfied with their workload, in the first instance they should discuss the matter with their Head of Department. If any issues are unresolved after such discussions, the Staff Member may seek a review of their workload allocation with the Executive Dean or relevant PVC. Should the matter remain unresolved, a staff member may request the Director, Human Resources to have their work allocation reviewed by an independent reviewer.

18.17 When a request for a review arises, the independent reviewer will be:

(a) an academic with some experience allocating workloads;

(b) outside the Staff Member’s faculty;

(c) appointed by the Director, Human Resources, following consultation with the NTEU Branch President.

18.18 The independent reviewer will:

(a) consider the Staff Member’s workload allocation having regard to the Faculty Workload Model and any relevant departmental variations;

(b) make an assessment as to the reasonableness of the workload allocation; and

(c) make recommendations as to a suggested resolution, if any.

18.19 At any stage during this process, the Staff Member may involve a Representative in any discussions.

18.20 If the Staff Member is not satisfied, they may invoke clause 50, Dispute Settling Procedures.

Default Arrangements and Permitted Variations

18.21 The default arrangements and permitted variations for each job family are set out in the table below:

Job Family

Default Workload Allocation

Permitted Variations

Teaching and Research Academic

40% Teaching

40% Research

20% Service

Teaching: The normal pattern is 40% teaching. A Staff Member may be allocated up to 50% teaching by the Supervisor following consultation and consideration of the factors listed in sub clause 18.14.

A Staff Member may also agree to a teaching allocation of more than 50%, provided that it is for a fixed period and there is genuine agreement.

Service: Service allocation may be increased above 20% for staff with significant service or administrative roles.

Teaching and Leadership Academic

70% Teaching

30% Leadership

Teaching allocation may be increased up to 80% or reduced below 70% by agreement.

There is no requirement to undertake research for staff employed in this category and no research expectations.

Technical/Industry/Commercial Academic

No default allocation

At least 40% in either teaching or research.

Non-traditional academic activity.

All job families

Staff Members with academic administration appointments may be allocated more than 20% service duties.

Level D and E Academic Staff must be available for University administrative work outside of their Department and Faculty.

If circumstances change during the year, the workload allocation may be varied after consultation between the Head of Department and Staff Member. Any changes will be recorded and published and must be consistent with the Faculty Workload Model and any teaching allocation above the agreed load will be offset in the workload of the subsequent session in which the Staff Member is scheduled to teach; alternatively, the Staff Member may agree to additional remuneration for the above-load teaching. By agreement between the Executive Dean and the Staff Member, the offset may be applied in up to three subsequent sessions in which the Staff Member is scheduled to teach.

18.22 Notwithstanding any other provision of this Agreement, the University will be permitted to continue to allocate up to 80% of total workload as teaching and related duties to Scholarly Teaching Fellows.

Limits and Constraints

18.23     Maximum workloads allocations are to be set within the nominal limit of 1575 working hours per year (45 weeks at nominal 35 hours per week for full time staff based on a full time staff member accessing 4 weeks of annual leave per year). Accordingly, a full-time Staff Member’s allocated workload must be able to be completed within a 35-hour week, averaged over a year. By mutual agreement, a Staff Member’s workload allocation may be averaged over a two-year period. Workload allocations, including research expectations, for part-time staff should reflect the appropriate employment fraction. A Staff Member will not be required to:

(a) teach in more than two sessions in a three-session system, or more than three sessions in a four-session system;

(b) teach across a span of more than 9 hours on any day;

(c) teach morning classes within 12 hours of the conclusion of their previous day's teaching.

18.24 Staff may be asked but will not be required to contribute to Session 3 teaching in accordance with normal workload arrangements. Staff who are otherwise fully committed may agree to undertake teaching for additional remuneration.

18.25 A Staff Member will not be required to perform off-shore teaching unless the Staff Member was specifically recruited for this purpose.

18.26 No Staff Member will be required to make up time or take on additional duties but may alter the duties that would normally be undertaken as a result of taking leave of any kind.

18.27 Outside work is not part of the workload and is subject to approval under clause 20, Outside Work.


18.27 Faculties will create a Faculty Workload Model in accordance with this new process before the end of 2019, for use in 2020. If faculties have undertaken the Faculty Workload Model development process within 6-12 months of the commencement of this Agreement, and the process complies with the steps above, the faculty will be taken to have complied with this clause.

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