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Queen's University
 

University Secretariat

Statement on Adjunct Academic Staff and Academic Assistants

Last Revised June 23, 1994
Approved October 19, 1984.
Revised January 24, 1991; December 17, 1992; and June 23, 1994.

Students registered at Queen's University are not subject to these regulations, but will be governed by the policy of the School of Graduate Studies & Research on Teaching Assistants.


Table of Contents

  1. Preamble
  1. Definitions
  2. Appointments
  3. Reappointment and Renewal
  4. Entitlements

 

Preamble

Queen's University employs many people who contribute to the academic activities of the University, but who do not hold an appointment under the Regulations Governing Appointment, Renewal of Appointment, Tenure and Termination. The background, qualifications and responsibilities of these people are exceedingly diverse, ranging from those who assist in marking assignments to those who have been responsible for teaching courses for many years. University policies divide the appointments held by these people into the following categories:

  1. adjunct academic staff, Group I,
  2. adjunct academic staff, Group II,
  3. continuing adjunct academic staff, Group III,
  4. academic assistants.

In this document, the mechanisms of appointment of adjunct academic staff members and academic assistants are set out. In addition, the rights and entitlements of members of the adjunct academic staff and academic assistants are specified.

I. Definitions

  1. A "member of the adjunct academic staff" means a person engaged to perform a prescribed and limited range of academic duties, principally teaching and principally part-time, which may include the responsibility to organize, plan and conduct courses independently or with only slight guidance from members of the regular academic staff.

    The category of adjunct academic staff is in itself diverse and includes three major groups:

    1. Group I appointees. Persons, usually members of professions, who give their services to the University for some or no return; persons who normally teach fewer than the equivalent of two full courses per year for remuneration;
    2. Group II appointees. Persons who have served fewer than five years and who normally teach the equivalent of two or more full courses per year, or whose remuneration for teaching duties and related activities is more that 50% of the floor salary for a regular assistant professor; it also includes those whose teaching and related academic activities at the University comprise an annual workload equivalent to either of the groups noted immediately above.
    3. Group III appointees. Persons who have served five years or longer as Group II appointees, excluding one or more years of approved leave. The transition from Group II to Group III is set out in Part III (B) 3. and 4., below. An appointee hired after retiring from an appointment as a member of the regular academic staff at Queen's University is not normally eligible to become a Group III appointee.
  2. An "academic assistant" means a person who acts as an assistant to a member of the regular or adjunct academic staff and who performs such duties as tutoring, grading, lab assistance, and research assistance. Academic assistants will normally work under the direct supervision of a member of the academic staff.

  3. A "member of the regular academic staff" means a person who holds an appointment under the Regulations Governing Appointment, Renewal of Appointment, Tenure and Termination for Academic Staff (October 1979: Queen's Gazette, Supplement to Volume XI, Number 46, 20 November 1979).

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II. Appointments

  1. Appointment of members of the adjunct academic staff and of academic assistants is subject to the budgetary authority of the dean of the faculty. The category is to be determined by the head, subject to review by the dean.

    Before hiring a Group II member of the adjunct academic staff, a head shall submit to the dean of the faculty for approval, a curriculum vitae and an assessment of the proposed appointee's competence, together with a description of the need for, and duties of, the proposed appointee.

    1. Members of the adjunct academic staff or academic assistants may be appointed at any time for periods of duty normally not exceeding twelve months. The head of the department shall sign letters of appointment of academic assistants. The dean of the faculty, or the Principal, according to the practice established in each faculty, shall sign letters of appointment to the adjunct academic staff. However, only the Principal has authority to make adjunct appointments at the academic rank of lecturer, assistant professor, or associate professor, and only the Board of Trustees has the authority to make adjunct appointments at the rank of professor. In all cases, letters of appointment shall specify the category (section I, 1) of the appointee. Before members of the adjunct academic staff are reappointed at a higher rank, they shall undergo the normal review process for promotion and are required to meet the criteria for promotion as set out in the Senate Statement on Promotion Policy.

    2. Department heads have authority to employ such subtitles as "instructor", "accompanist", "tutor", "demonstrator", "marker", for example, for people employed as members of the adjunct academic staff or as academic assistants.

    3. If, in the opinion of the dean of the faculty, a proposed Group II appointee's qualifications do not meet the normal standards to be expected of such appointees in the department, the dean shall not authorize the appointment unless the head of the department satisfies the dean that:

      1. the appointment is important to the teaching program of the department;

      2. the proposed appointee can perform the assigned duties; and

      3. a better qualified appointee is not available in the academic year for which the appointment is proposed.

  2. Before the beginning of the academic year, a department head shall assign the responsibilities of each member of the adjunct academic staff and of each academic assistant and shall inform each of them in writing.

  3. Department heads shall make available to applicants for appointment as a member of the adjunct academic staff or as an academic assistant the criteria used in filling positions. In addition to the basic teaching needs of the department, heads shall provide information to help members of the adjunct academic staff and academic assistants to assess their situation and to estimate their future employment prospects. Such information may include the priority normally given to various types of qualifications, for example, the priority given to people with special technical expertise, emeritus members of the regular academic staff, post-doctoral fellows, visitors or graduate students.

  4. In filling identified positions on the adjunct academic staff, preference shall be given to Group III appointees (see section I,1,c) and then to the appointees who have held any adjunct Group II appointment in the department for several years in the recent past.

  5. A department head, with the approval of the dean of the faculty, may recommend that an adjunct academic appointment not be renewed, for one of the following reasons:

    1. an appointee is found not to be carrying out his or her duties satisfactorily;

    2. the normal teaching duties to which the appointee has been assigned are no longer required, for example, because the curriculum has been reorganized and the course or courses being taught by the appointee are no longer to be offered, or because a regular, full-time appointee has been assigned to teach those courses;

    3. for reasons of financial constraint, the department can no longer employ the appointee.

  6. In the period of financial constraint, the continued employment of regular academic staff shall have priority.

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III. Reappointment and Renewal

A. Group I Appointees

  1. An adjunct academic appointee (Group I) seeking reappointment for any period during the next academic year should so inform the department head in writing by March 31. The head of the department shall respond in writing as soon as possible, and in any case not later than May 1.

    1. The response shall state whether the head:
      1. will recommend reappointment;
      2. is likely but not yet certain to recommend reappointment;
      3. is not likely to recommend reappointment; or
      4. will not recommend reappointment.

      In all cases the head shall make the recommendation to the dean or Principal as set out in II,2.

    2. If a Group I appointee has requested reappointment, and is not to be reappointed, and wishes to know the reasons, the department head shall provide the reasons for that decision to the appointee at the earliest feasible date. If the Group I appointee so requests, the head shall provide the reasons in writing.

  B. Group II and Group III Appointees

  1. The department head shall conduct a performance appraisal annually of each adjunct academic appointee (Group II and III) in the department as set out in section IV,2. In the second and subsequent years the head shall take previous evaluations into consideration in the current performance appraisal.

    1. Appointees in their first four years of consecutive service who seek reappointment during the next academic year shall inform the department head in writing by March 31. The head shall respond in writing as soon as possible, and in any case not later than May 1. The response shall state whether the head:

      1. will recommend reappointment;
      2. is likely but not yet certain to recommend reappointment;
      3. is not likely to recommend reappointment; or
      4. will not recommend reappointment.

      In all cases the head shall make the recommendation to the dean or Principal as set out in Section II,2.

    2. If an appointee is not to be reappointed, he or she may request, and the head of the department shall then provide reasons in writing for the decision. The reasons set out in section II,6 above shall constitute sufficient grounds.

    1. An appointee in his or her fifth consecutive year of service, excluding one or more years of approved leave, who seeks reappointment, shall inform the department head in writing by January 15. The head shall conduct the annual performance appraisals and respond in writing by February 15. The head shall state whether the appointee is to be recommended for renewal as a Group III appointee.

    2. If the initial decision is not to make an appointment as a Group III appointee, the head shall meet with the appointee and inform him or her of the reasons. At this time the appointee may submit further information. If, after considering the additional information, the head continues to believe that the appointee should not be recommended for reappointment, the head with the approval of the dean shall so inform the appointee in writing.

    3. The appointee may request a meeting with the head and the dean of the faculty to discuss the adverse recommendation. The appointee may also name an adviser to accompany the appointee at the meeting. The dean shall inform the appointee in writing of the final decision whether or not to recommend reappointment.

    1. Group III appointees who do not wish to hold an appointment in the next academic year shall so notify the department head by March 31.

    2. If a Group III appointee is not to be renewed for the reason stated in section II 6(a), the department head shall so inform the appointee in writing by February 15, in the year of the current appointment. The appointee may request further review as set out in section III 3(b) and 3(c).

    3. If a Group III appointee is not to be renewed for the reasons stated in section II 6(b) or 6(c), the appointee shall be given one year's notice dated from the termination date of the current appointment.

  2. Transitional arrangements. Appointees with five or more years of consecutive service excluding one or more years of approved leave became Group III appointees upon Senate approval of this document on January 24, 1991.

  3. Any reduction in remuneration for Group III appointees will require one year's notice dated from the termination date of the current appointment. This requirement does not apply to reductions in remuneration associated with a return to normal duties following a temporary (i.e. not more than two years) increase in workload. An increased workload assigned for more than two consecutive years shall be considered as part of the normal duties of an appointee. Subsequently, any reduction in those duties with concomitant reduction in remuneration shall require one year's notice dated from the termination date of the current appointment.

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IV. Entitlements

  1. Compensation

    Compensation for members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) shall be based upon guidelines established annually by the dean of the faculty and made available to those affected. On the basis of an evaluation carried out annually by the department head, the dean will review individually the compensation of these persons.

  2. Performance Appraisal

    The department head shall evaluate members of the adjunct academic staff annually; the supervisors of academic assistants shall evaluate academic assistants annually. The head shall conduct a formal evaluation of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III). By January 31 of each year, the department head shall inform these members of the adjunct academic staff about the forthcoming performance evaluation and shall invite them to provide a report on their teaching and related academic activities. After completing the evaluation, the head of the department shall make the results available upon request to the appointee.

  3. Staff Benefits

    Certain staff benefit plans are available for members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) appointed for periods of one year or less. These include supplementary medical and hospital benefits, life insurance, and Workers' Compensation. After a period of employment with the University which is normally of five years or more, persons will be eligible for six months of paid sick leave. After one year of employment with the University, Groups II and III appointees may enrol in the pension plan. Group III appointees may also be eligible for additional staff benefits and should consult with Pension and Benefits. All members of the adjunct academic staff may be eligible for professional expense allowance on the basis of teaching load.

  4. Vacation

    Vacation entitlement applies to members of the adjunct academic staff and academic assistants. All vacations with pay are taken during the term of appointment at a time mutually convenient to the staff members and the department head or a deputy. Normally the vacation period is expected to be taken:

    1. between the last day of classes in the fall and the first day of classes in the winter term; or

    2. during the mid term reading week; or

    3. during the period between the last day of spring term and the first day of summer term; or

    4. between the last day of summer term and the first day of fall term.

    Vacation entitlement is at the rate of one day and a quarter for each full month of the contract and in no case less than the Employment Standards Act. The vacation entitlement shall be prorated for the period worked. For persons paid by the hour from casual payroll, an additional four percent should be added for vacation.

  5. Identification

    Persons who are employed as academic assistants or as members of the adjunct academic staff shall be issued with staff identity cards: academic assistants and members of the adjunct academic staff (Group I) upon request; members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) as a matter of course.

  6. Library Privileges

    Staff identity cards serve as library cards. Persons who are employed as academic assistants or as members of the adjunct academic staff shall have the same library privileges as the regular academic staff. In the case of appointees whose contracts are for less than one year, library privileges may be granted for a full twelve months to include a period for preparation.

  7. Calendar Entry

    When timing of the publication of the faculty calendar permits, the names of the members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) will be included.

  8. Telephone Listing

    When timing of the publication of the telephone directory permits, the names of the members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) will be included in the departmental listing.

  9. Physical Education and Other Facilities

    Persons who are employed as academic assistants or as members of the adjunct academic staff have the same rights in these facilities as other staff members.

  10. Departmental Participation

    Individual departments have the responsibility for determining whether members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) will be eligible to serve on departmental committees as full members and to attend departmental meetings. The department head shall explain the policy to those members of the adjunct academic staff at the time they are first appointed. Adjunct academic staff will be provided with departmental services as available and as related to their prescribed duties.

  11. Assistance for Scholarly Work

    Members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) who are engaged in scholarly work which is not directly related to the requirements of their appointments are eligible to apply for such assistance as may be available. Travel support for conferences and research funds, as related to the prescribed duties of the adjunct academic staff, shall be at the discretion of the dean of the faculty.

  12. Leave

    Members of the adjunct academic staff (Groups II and III) are not eligible for sabbatical leave but are eligible for other forms of leave as defined by university policy.

  13. Grievance Procedure

    Alleged breaches of these policies and procedures may be grieved under the rules established in the Senate Document on Grievance, Discipline and Related Matters, 26 February 1976 (and subsequently amended). For the purposes of other grievances, that Senate Document applies to all persons holding appointments under these rules.

    Faculties may develop their own procedures on matters set out in this document for members of the adjunct academic staff (Group I). The dean of the faculty shall report any such procedures to the Senate Committee on Appointment, Promotion, Tenure and Leave.

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