New principles for working with teaching affiliates

July 4th, 2019

The University of Nottingham and the University and College Union Branch agree that those engaged to provide teaching on ‘casual worker’ arrangements make a valued and valuable contribution to the University and are committed to work collaboratively to support them.

Used appropriately, the involvement of industry experts, postgraduate students and postdoctoral staff as Teaching Affiliates can enrich our undergraduates’ learning whilst providing postgraduate students with valuable teaching experience and income to progress their academic careers as they pursue their own studies.

Following longstanding independent and collaborative exploration of the support currently offered to Teaching Affiliates, on behalf of the University, Human Resources and colleagues representing each Faculty, together with UCU Branch representatives, have agreed a shared commitment to ensure fair pay and conditions through a new set of Principles for Working with Teaching Affiliates that will apply to both current and new engagements with effect from 23 September 2019.

The Principles detail how managers should ensure that payment practice and workload time assessment is consistent with Faculty norms for staff on contracts, and ensure that those engaged on casual worker arrangements are not asked to undertake work for which they are not paid.

The Principles ensure that the scope of activity is specified in engagement letters – whether people are engaged via Human Resources or Unitemps – for example whether activity will include direct teaching, preparation, assessment, or pastoral student support. They also encourage review by Faculties to ensure the most appropriate engagement type is identified when considering a particular temporary role or assignment.

Faculties will ask managers of teaching to review individual arrangements to ensure compliance with the Principles when they come into effect on 23 September 2019.

A Task & Finish Group, led by Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jeremy Gregory, and including Faculty and UCU representatives, is being established to review the application of the Principles, building on the joint platform they have established and to consider further opportunities to improve models of engagement for hourly paid teaching.

The intention is for any revised arrangements arising from the Task & Finish Group to be implemented in time for the 2020/2021 academic year.

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One Comment

July 4th, 2019 at 1:08 pm

Daniel Edmondson

Pleased to see the University committing to these important first steps, but absolutely essential that there continues to be progress made toward outright abolishing the casualised, hourly-paid approach to the essential work that TAffs do for our departments.

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