UCL Human Resources


UCL Australia Conditions of Service for Academic Staff

This Guide is only applicable for those staff employed in UCL Australia

1. Application
These terms and conditions apply to Professors, Readers, Senior Lecturers, Lecturers, Research Associates, Research Fellows and Appointments are subject to the current terms and conditions set out in this document, in letters of appointment, and any amendments which are subsequently notified to staff. These conditions are compliant with the National Employment Standards (NES) and the Higher Education Awards - academic Staff - 2010.

Members of staff are expected to observe UCL policies and procedures in the course of their appointment. The main employment policies are summarised in the document Summary of HR Policies, Procedures and Services which is attached to letters of appointment. These policies are updated regularly.

Appointments to Chairs and Readerships of the University of London tenable at UCL, and conferment of the titles of Professor and Reader of the University of London on UCL staff are governed by the University of London's Regulation 3, a copy of which can be found on the University of London website. Should any variation exist between the terms and conditions set out in the letter of appointment and those set out below, those specified in the letter of appointment or notified amendments to it, will take precedence.

2. Grades
Academic staff are graded according to UCL criteria. This has been mapped across to the Higher Education Industry - Academic Staff - Minimum Standards for Academic Levels (MSAL) definitions as follows:

UCL GradeMSAL Grade

7 (Lecturer A)

A (Lecturer)

8 (Lecturer B)

B (Lecturer)

9 (Senior Lecturer/Reader)

C (Senior Lecturer)

D (Reader)

10 (Professor)

E (Professor)

3. Probation
UCL Lecturers are required to undergo a probationary period of 3 years, unless they have successfully completed a comparable support and training programme in another institution. UCL provides support, guidance and training throughout the 3 year probationary period and Heads of Department are responsible for monitoring a Probationary Lecturer's work and for conducting an annual review of progress and performance.

Research Fellows with proleptic academic appointments: 36 months

Further information can be found in the Probationary Scheme Document.

Also see the Induction and Probation Policy.

Staff with teaching or other responsibilities for students are required to give notice such that they leave at the end of a term. The notice period of three months also applies to UCL as the employer, except

  • where a contract of employment is to be terminated on grounds of ill health or redundancy, 6 months notice will be provided
  • in cases of gross misconduct where UCL Australia reserves the right to terminate an appointment without notice, in accordance with the Disciplinary Procedure.

5. Remuneration
The current salary scales can be found on the HR website.

Annual incremental progression will be effective from the anniversary date of start of employment and is subject to satisfactory performance confirmed at the annual appraisal review.

6. Promotions Procedure
Academic staff will have the opportunity to apply for promotion through the Senior Academic Promotion Procedures.

Research Staff have the opportunity to apply for promotion through the Senior Research Promotion Procedures.

7. Hours of Work
The average notional working week for academic staff is 36.5 hours excluding meal breaks. Employees must take a 30 minute meal break for every five continuous hours worked.

8. Duties
Academic staff are expected to undertake teaching, research and administrative/enabling duties as agreed with the Head of Department.

Members of staff are permitted to accept External Examinerships and may, with the Head of Department's approval, accept other professional appointments provided that they do not interfere with the duties of the appointment and do not conflict with UCL or University of London policies.

Attendance at meetings, for example Boards of Study, Faculty and Committee meetings, contribution to corporate roles and collaboration across faculties and disciplines is considered an important part of academic life.

9. Pension
Academic staff are entitled to join the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) subject to the Scheme's rules and regulations, which is a defined benefit scheme.

In addition, UCL is required to make payments to an Australian Guaranteed Pension scheme. Employees at UCL Australia should elect a compliant fund of their choice and UCL will make the compulsory employer contributions to this fund. The current employer contribution rate is 9% of salary. For UK/overseas appointees, it is a condition of your appointment that if you return to the UK/oversees and request a refund of these contributions, any such refund will be paid over by you to UCL.

For employees who do not wish to contribute to the USS scheme, you may instead elect to join Unisuper. The current employer rate is 17%.

10. Annual Leave
The leave year runs from 1 October to 30 September. Staff are entitled to 27 days annual leave per year (pro rata for part-time staff). Annual leave must be approved by the Head of Department and normally taken in university vacations. Time off in lieu of additional hours worked may be taken in addition to annual leave, as agreed with the Head of Department.

In addition, staff are entitled to 14 paid days comprising of South Austrailian public holidays, and UCL closure days. Part-time staff will be entitled to the pro-rata equivalent of these days.

Accrued leave should be taken within the respective leave year; no payment will be made in lieu of leave not taken. Annual leave not taken in a year will be carried forward to the next leave year. Where extensive annual leave has been accrued of 8 weeks or more (pro rata for part time staff), UCL can require an employee to take 2 weeks of this accrued leave.

Where a member of staff is leaving UCL's employment, outstanding leave should normally be taken before the termination date.  However, where this is not possible, payment may be made in lieu of leave accrued but not taken. 

For further information see the Annual Leave Policy

11. Leave of Absence
Requests for leave of absence should be made to the Head of Department in the first instance. The Head of Department is authorised to grant leave of absence if the arrangements involve no additional financial commitment for UCL and teaching and other commitments can be met effectively from within departmental resources.

Decisions on leave of absence from the Head of Department, for periods of one session or longer, or in the case of appeal against the Head of Department's decision will be made by the Provost.

Where a member of academic staff is granted leave of absence (with pay or a proportion of pay) to take up a post at another institution for six weeks or more in term time, the cost of replacement, if any, should be taken into account and the applicant is required to supply details of salary and commitments to the Head of Department as requested.

The Head of Department shall report to the HR Director the names of staff to whom they grant leave and the dates of leave in each case, as well as any financial arrangements.

12. Sabbatical Leave
Academic staff should be aware of the Sabbatical Leave Policy: UCL Australia.

13. Leave for Personal and Domestic Reasons, and Family Reasons
UCL's policy on leave for personal and domestic reasons relates to medical appointments, bereavement/ compassionate leave, parental paternity and adoption leave, leave for urgent and domestic crisis, religious and cultural observations and time to visit relatives abroad. For information see the full policy

14. Personal Leave
Personal leave covers the statutory provision of sick leave and carer's leave.  10 days of personal leave will be accrued progressively through a year with a maximum of 10 days being carried forward to the following leave year or indefinitely if not taken. Personal leave carried over each year will be less any sickness or carer's leave taken in that respective leave year. 

Carer's Leave
An employee is entitled to carer's leave if a member of their immediate family or household requires care or support because of a personal illness or injury or an unexpected emergency. If the statutory entitlement has been exhausted, additional requests for paid and unpaid carer's leave will be granted in line with Leave for Domestic and Social Reasons Policy UCL Australia. Any carer's leave taken will be offset against accrued personal leave. 

Staff unable to attend work due to sickness should contact their manager as soon as reasonably practicable, ideally within 30 minutes of the time that they are expected to commence work (or as early in the day as possible if they work a flexible or irregular work pattern). Any departmental arrangements for reporting absence must be followed.

Further details of UCL's current procedures relating to sickness absence can be found in the Sickness Absence Policy.

Staff following the Sickness Absence Reporting Procedure set out in the Sickness Absence Policy, are entitled to sick leave as follows:


Full Pay

Half Pay

During first 3 months service

2 weeks

2 weeks

3 months service or more but less than 12 months service

9 weeks

9 weeks

12 months service or more but less than 3 years service

13 weeks

13 weeks

3 years service but less than 4 years service

22 weeks

22 weeks

Service of 4 years or more

26 weeks

26 weeks

Occupational sick pay takes into account the number of days of sickness absence already taken within the previous 12 month period and is determined by length of service on the first day of a period of sickness absence. Any sick leave taken will be offset against accrued personal leave.

15. Maternity
Academic staff should be aware of UCL's Maternity Policy.

16. Grievances
For more information see the UCL Australia Grievance Procedure

17. Disciplinary
For Professors, Readers and Lecturers The Procedure for Discipline, Dismissal and Removal from Office is set out in Statute 18, 3(1), of UCL's Charter and Statutes.

For Research Staff, more information can be found in the UCL Australia Disciplinary policy

18. Financial Regulations
Compliance with UCL's Financial Regulations is a requirement for all members of staff. Financial Regulations includes UCL's Gifts and Hospitality policy and UCL's Anti-corruption and Bribery policy. A copy of the Financial Regulations is also available from the Finance Division.

19. Financial Irregularity
All staff are required to comply with UCL's Policy for Investigating and Resolving Allegations of Financial Irregularity.

20. Consultancy Work
Academic staff should be aware of UCL's current guidelines relating to Consultancy Work.

21. Copyright
Academic staff should be aware of UCL's current Copyright Policy.

22. Misconduct in Academic Research
UCL is committed to maintaining the integrity and probity of academic research. To this end, UCL considers that the conduct of research and the dissemination of its results must be truthful and fair, and has adopted a procedure for the investigation and resolution of any allegations of misconduct in research.
The current procedure can be found in the Academic Manual.

23. Communication with the Media
A member of staff contacting the media on a matter concerned with UCL or departmental policy, using the address of UCL, should inform the Head of Department before despatch (or the Provost in the case of the Head of Department), and also UCL's Media Relations Office. The staff member should state that the views expressed are personal to the author. On non-academic matters, staff should write from their home address.

Academic staff contacted by the press and media to comment or advise on topics in their field should observe the following guidelines:

a) Inform the Media Relations Office that contact has been made. The media relations team can advise on handling the media, and may also be aware of the context of an enquiry that an individual academic may not;

b) Ensure that they identify themselves with UCL and their specific department, according to UCL's corporate identity guidelines, in all dealings with members of the media.

The Media Relations Office can advise on all aspects of interacting with the media.

24. Public Interest Disclosure
Staff should make themselves aware of UCL's Policy on Public Interest Disclosure with additional regard for relevant South Australian legislation; the Whistleblowers Protection Act 1993 and the Corporations Act 2001.

25. Data Protection
Whilst the Data Protection Act 1998 is not applicable in Australia, the principles of the UCL Data Protection Policy will still apply at UCL Australia. Information held in the UK relating to employees at UCL Australia will be held in accordance with UK Data Protection legislation and the UCL Data Protection Policy. 

26. Community Service Leave
Employees will be granted reasonable time off, in consultation with the Head of Department, in order to undertake certain community service duties including jury service and voluntary emergency management agreement (e.g. dealing with a natural disaster).

Members of staff will be granted paid leave of absence whilst carrying out jury service (minus any pay received from the jury service). UCL Australia may ask for evidence of the service.

27. Amendments to Terms and Conditions
UCL may vary these conditions from time to time provided that the amendments are not at variance with any statutory and legal requirements. UCL may also vary these conditions without consultation, where this is necessary to comply with legal requirements. UCL will notify staff of any amendments.

HR Policy and Planning 
Updated January 2015