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Academic Chemistry Workload Modelling

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Dear Durham University,

I am writing to you under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the following information from the University regarding the workload allocation models and tariffs used to model the workload of your academic Chemistry staff:

1. What activities are recognised by the workload model for Chemistry staff?
2. What tariffs are associated with each activity (i.e. how much time is allocated for each activity) for Chemistry staff?
3. How is the total workload of a member of Chemistry staff modelled (i.e. what protocol is used to combine tariffs)?
4. What formal guidance is given to managers relating to the link between contracts of employment and the calculated workloads of Chemistry staff? In particular:
(a) What are the maximum and minimum permissible tariffed workloads for a member of staff in a full-time role?
(b) What are the broad subcategories of activity (such as Teaching or Research) recognised in academic roles?
(c) What is the division of total workload between these subcategories in contracts of employment (e.g. 40% Teaching, 60% Research)? How does this division relate to modelled workload?
(d) How are part-time contracts modelled differently to full-time contracts?
(e) What is the intended relationship between modelled workload and true workload? (e.g. modelled workload is expected to be 20% less than true workload, or to match true workload, or to exceed true workload by 20%)

Please provide information in the form of a Microsoft Word document in either the .doc or .docx format.

If it is not possible to provide the information requested due to the information exceeding the cost of compliance limits identified in Section 12, please provide advice and assistance – under your Section 16 obligations – as to how I can refine my request to be included within the scope of the Act.

In any case, if you can identify ways that my request could be refined please provide further advice and assistance to indicate this.

I look forward to your response within 20 working days, as stipulated by the Act.

If you have any further queries please don’t hesitate to contact me, and I will be happy to clarify what I am asking for.

Yours faithfully,

Mr O'Neill

ACCESS I., Durham University

Dear Mr O'Neill

Freedom of Information Request

I acknowledge receipt of your email below requesting information from Durham University.

Please be advised that the University will respond as soon as possible and in any event within 20 working days.

The University, like other organisations, is facing unprecedented challenges during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Please be advised that there may be a delay in our full response to you; we will let you know if this will be the case.

Yours sincerely

Information Governance Unit
Durham University

Information Governance Unit, University Secretary’s Office
t: +44 (0) 191 334 6103/46246  e: [Durham University request email]

CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE:
This message is intended solely for the addressee(s) in the first instance and may contain confidential information. If you are not the intended recipient, please notify the sender, delete the message from your system immediately and do not disclose the contents to any other party.

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ACCESS I., Durham University

Dear Mr O’Neill

 

Further to our acknowledgement of your request for information, I am
writing to let you know that unfortunately there will be a delay in our
full response to you.

 

The University, like other organisations, is facing unprecedented
challenges during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Some resources have
been diverted away from usual compliance and information rights work and
despite best efforts it is not possible to access some University
information whilst staff work remotely.

 

We will aim to fully respond as soon as we are able to do so and in the
meantime we will aim to update you weekly, subject to demand on the
service.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Information Governance Unit

Durham University

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Information Governance Unit, University Secretary’s Office

e: [1][Durham University request email]

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Dear ACCESS I.,

Thank you for this update, and the indication of weekly updates. I fully recognise the difficult circumstances and your suggestion seems like a reasonable compromise.

Yours sincerely,

Mr O'Neill

ACCESS I., Durham University

 

 

Dear Mr O’Neill

 

Thank you for your request for information from Durham University.
Colleagues have provided the information below in response to your
questions.

 

1.          What activities are recognised by the workload model for
Chemistry staff?

The full range of teaching, research and academic administration
activities are recognised by the University workload model by which the
Department of Chemistry workload model operates. This includes lecturing,
tutoring, practical laboratory teaching, undergraduate project
supervision, postgraduate research project supervision, internally and
externally funded research activities, academic administrative roles and
citizenship.

 

2.          What tariffs are associated with each activity (i.e. how much
time is allocated for each activity) for Chemistry staff?

The modelling approach in the Department aims to ensure that the workload
across the Department is distributed as evenly as possible in accordance
with the principles of 40% teaching, 40% research and 20% administration
and in relation to staff contracts. Within this consideration is also
given to the equity of representation of subject groupings, sizes of
research groups, skills and previous responsibilities.

 

3.          How is the total workload of a member of Chemistry staff
modelled (i.e. what protocol is used to combine tariffs)?

            There is no set approach or protocol applied, only that we aim
to meet the principles of 40% teaching, 40% research and 20%
administration.

 

4.          What formal guidance is given to managers relating to the link
between contracts of employment and the calculated workloads of Chemistry
staff? In particular:

 

(a)         What are the maximum and minimum permissible tariffed
workloads for a member of staff in a full-time role?

 

There are no maximum or minimum or permissible tariffs under the model,
the approach is taken to ensure a broad and balanced distribution of
duties across the Department.

 

(b) What are the broad subcategories of activity (such as Teaching or
Research) recognised in academic roles?

 

Teaching, Research and Administration

 

(c) What is the division of total workload between these subcategories in
contracts of employment (e.g. 40% Teaching, 60% Research)? How does this
division relate to modelled workload?

 

Broadly speaking, for teaching and research contracted colleagues there is
an expectation of a division of 40% teaching, 40% research and 20%
administration.

 

(d) How are part-time contracts modelled differently to full-time
contracts?

 

Workload is modelled on a pro-rata basis dependent on the %FTE of
contract.

 

(e) What is the intended relationship between modelled workload and true
workload? (e.g. modelled workload is expected to be 20% less than true
workload, or to match true workload, or to exceed true workload by 20%)

 

The workload model is intended as an accurate reflection of the
distribution across the Department.

 

If you are dissatisfied with the University’s response to your freedom of
information request, you can ask us to internally review our handling of
your request, including the application of any exemptions applied. To do
this, please email [1][Durham University request email] or write to:

 

Information Governance Unit

University Secretary’s Office

Durham University

The Palatine Centre

Stockton Road

Durham

DL1 3LE

 

Please state the grounds on which you wish the decision to be reviewed and
enclose any other information that may be useful in considering the matter
further. We aim to inform you of our decision within 20 working days from
the date your request for internal review is received.

 

If you are not satisfied with the results of the internal review you may
apply to the Information Commissioner's Office for an independent review.

 

Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

[2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

Information Governance Unit

Durham University

 

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Information Governance Unit, University Secretary’s Office

t: +44 (0) 191 33 46103/46246 e: [3][Durham University request email]

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