Teaching and admin policy and work allocation model

The policy and model relative to the allocation of admin and teaching duties

Part A: Definitions

The following definitions are used throughout:

  • Course sizes: very small (fewer than ~15 students), small (~15-25 students), moderate (~25-80 students), large (~80-150 students), very large (> ~150 students).
  • “By agreement”: unless otherwise specified, agreement must be in writing from the Director of Institute or Deputy Head of School, and is subject to the needs of the School in any given year.
  • Academic staff: refers to staff who have research and teaching contracts, as well as those with teaching only contracts (ie. University Teachers).

Part B: Principles

  1. It is the collective responsibility of the body of academic staff to carry the teaching and admin load of the School, in any year.
  2. By default, all academic staff contribute to both teaching and admin.
  3. Duty allocation will be undertaken in a fair and transparent manner, and reasons for any variance to the standard work allocation for any individual will be documented and visible (respecting confidentiality, where necessary).
  4. Staff on part-time contracts will undertake duties proportionate to their fractional contract.
  5. Staff with exceptionally heavy or light research loads may have their duty allocation adjusted to compensate accordingly. As a guideline, staff at grade UE08 and UE09 with more than 50% salary recovery from grants paying standard overhead rates (averaged over the academic year) may be considered for a reduction in teaching and/or admin load. For staff at grade UE10, the guideline figure is 60% salary recovery.
  6. Where approved by the Head of School, consultancy commitments above the usual maximum of 60 days per year (or the maximum period outlined in University Policy), or where consultancy income is used to offset the member of staff’s salary, may result in a reduction in teaching and admin work allocation.
  7. New staff will normally have a reduced teaching allocation in their first year and will not normally be allocated to a large or very large course in that first year, unless co-teaching with a more experienced member of staff.
  8. Staff who are returning from family-related leave may be entitled to a reduced teaching allocation for a period of time, as outlined in the School’s Family Support Policy.
  9. Responsibility for specific teaching and admin duties will normally be allocated on the basis that the member of staff will retain that responsibility for a period of between three and five years, with the responsibility rotating after that time.
  10. Whilst individual preferences will be taken into account in the allocation of duties, a member of staff who is not fully allocated will be expected to undertake relevant duties that they could be reasonably expected to fulfil.
  11. Doctoral research student supervision is a standard expectation of academic staff and therefore does not receive any specific recognition within the teaching and admin work allocation model.
  12. The default date for the handover of duties is 1 August in each year. However, this date will not be appropriate in all circumstances so the incumbent and their successor should agree on the handover process, particularly for MSc-related activities. For instance, the incumbent may retain responsibility for the business of the outgoing academic year with their successor taking responsibility for the business of the incoming academic year. Non-standard agreements should be reported to the Director of Institute, Director of Teaching or Deputy Head of School.
  13. Staff who are awarded fellowships or entitled to buyouts will normally be expected to complete any duties already assigned to them for the current academic year. In an effort to avoid cancelling courses, and where possible within funder rules, staff should attempt to delay their fellowship to the academic year following or negotiate with the School to retain their duties and be provided with a relief from teaching and admin at the end of their fellowship or buy-out period.
  14. Where agreement cannot be reached with a staff member regarding their work allocation, the staff member may request a meeting with the Director of Institute or Deputy Head of School, to discuss the matter.

Part C: Standard teaching and admin work allocation

   1. The standard teaching work allocation for a full-time member of academic staff is: 

a) Teaching

Academic Staff  (excluding University Teachers): 20 credit points on moderately sized course; 15 credit points for staff who make a significant contribution to a large course; and 10 credits of very large courses.

University Teachers: Double that of academic staff.

The load may be varied depending on factors such as complexity and maturity of the course.

b) Tutorials

Academic Staff (excluding University Teachers): A standard tutorial allocation of two groups (typically 7-10 contact hours with no associated marking), or one group as specified annually for specific courses (e.g., IRR and IPP) where significant written feedback or marking is required.

University Teachers: Double that of academic staff.

For courses where a single group is fewer than 7 contact hours, the number of groups is increased accordingly.

Where a student facing duty (refer below) is not allocated, at least one tutorial group will be within IRR, IPP or a first or second year course.

c) Project Supervision

An equitable share of Honours and Masters project supervision.

This total includes Honours, MInf, and MSc projects, and projects undertaken by MSc(R) students who are members of CDT cohorts (but not projects undertaken by non-CDT MSc(R) students).

By default, supervision load will include both Honours and Masters projects. By agreement, staff may focus on just one type of project however an overall balance needs to be maintained across the School.  Staff wishing to focus on just one type of project can agree with another staff member to undertake the other type and present their request to the DoI/DHoS.

Project supervision by Research Assistants is additional to, not a substitute for, project supervision by their PI.

Project proposals must include projects that any reasonable Masters or Honours student, as applicable, can undertake.

d) Student facing duties

A student facing role which supports student community building such as Cohort Lead or Co-ordinator of a Student Society/Group (eg. Formula One, Hyped, Hoppers).

For AY 2023-24 while implementation of Cohort Lead responsibilities will occur -assuming a ratio of 80 students to a Cohort Lead - those who undertake a Cohort Lead role will be relieved of one tutorial group.  Other student facing roles will generally have a standard tutorial load.   This will be reviewed in December 2023 prior to AY 2024-25 duty allocation.Those who do not undertake one of these student facing duties will be allocated at least one tutorial group within IRR, IPP or a first or second year course.
e) Admin

University Teachers and Lecturers: A small admin duty.

Senior Lecturers/Readers: A medium sized admin duty.

Professors:  A leadership role.

f) Recruitment or Outreach activity At least four hours per year of recruitment or outreach activity, as directed by the School.

   2. Actual numbers (credits, groups, projects, tutees) may vary, depending on the student cohort in any year, however, the principle of fair and transparent allocation will prevail.

   3. By agreement, staff may adjust the balance between responsibility for classroom teaching, tutorial groups, student facing duties and project supervision, providing that an equivalent overall load is maintained.

   4. If through the normal allocation process, a staff member ends up with significantly fewer than the expected number of project students or teaching credit points, they will be expected to take on some alternative teaching or admin duties to maintain an equivalent overall load. These may include additional tutorial groups, marking, supervision, student facing duties or admin.

   5. Non-essential courses that are consistently very small will not be counted towards a staff member's work contribution to the School but (by agreement) may be taught on a voluntary basis. Staff members teaching very small but essential courses, or non-essential small courses may be asked to take on additional admin or other teaching duties to maintain a full work contribution to the School. Staff at risk of low enrolment are encouraged to consider ways to increase it (e.g., marketing; changes to material, timetabling, or prerequisites), ideally in consultation with the head of curriculum and/or DoLT.

   6. Staff undertaking heavy admin roles may be granted relief from some other duties by the Head of School. Conversely, staff who demonstrate excellence in teaching may be granted relief from some admin duties by the Head of School if they wish to take on a heavier teaching load.

Part D: Support for Course Organisers

To help support course organisers, the school will provide funding to cover teaching support, which may include tutors and demonstrators; marking for exams and/or coursework; and teaching assistant support for course management and development.

Further details regarding the funding allocation procedures and types of roles that can be employed can be found in the Teaching Support Policy.

Teaching Support policy

Policy Approved by: Strategy Committee March 2021



It is assumed that offers are made/accepted in spring and the staff member’s start date will be within the same calendar year.