School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering

Academic workload model

Please note

This workload model is only intended as a guide to ensure equitable distribution of work between academic staff, and special circumstances may dictate alternative work patterns.

Academics are expected to work about 38 hours a week, with four weeks annual leave taken outside of term time.

It is understood that many work longer hours than this, but that is not an expectation of the School, and is instead an individual lifestyle choice.


The hours of work are flexible, but academics teaching undergraduate students or supervising postgraduate students are usually expected to be on campus during normal business hours.

While senior academics are expected to work the same number of hours as junior academics, the hours they spend on research and service are expected to be more productive in terms of output, since they are managing research programmes through supervision of postgraduate students and research assistants. This justifies their higher level of remuneration.

In the School, undergraduate teaching is shared uniformly amongst the core Teaching and Research Staff, with the standard load being coordination and delivery of one six point unit per semester, including tutorial classes, plus approximately two points worth of additional assistance in other units throughout the year, through delivery of tutorials, guest lectures or unit coordination. A six point unit is nominally 6 hours of contact and 6 hours of preparation and marking per week, although there are variations.

Hence the standard teaching load is approximately 14 hours per week during term times, including preparation and marking. Outside of term some marking of exams and development of new teaching materials is expected. However, it is also expected that some of the teaching hours will be converted to research hours.

Teaching is allocated to academics on the basis of expertise in the subject matter concerned, recognising that work load issues may dictate that at times units may not be taught by the staff member most expert in the subject matter. However, in all cases the teaching staff member is competent and experienced in the area they are teaching. Wherever possible subject areas taught coincide with the research area of the staff member concerned.


During term 14 hours per week is expected to be devoted to research.

For senior academics this will include supervising postgraduate students and research assistants, reviewing papers and theses, managing research and writing and reviewing grant proposals. Junior academics will use this time to perform strategic research aimed at building a significant research profile. Writing of grant applications and papers is also expected.

The remaining 10 hours per week is expected to be devoted to various types of service, including serving on School working parties and Faculty and University committees, student consultations, and interaction with industry including testing and consulting.

Senior academics that have research assistants supported by research grants are encouraged to involve these research assistants in teaching. However, the senior academic retains responsibility for the quality of the unit he or she coordinates, and the training of the research assistant appropriately, and research assistants must attend the Introduction to University Teaching and Learning course before delivering lectures.

Study leave 

Academics are encouraged to forward plan to take study leave when it is due, preferably one semester after each three years.

Forward planning to take long service leave when due is also encouraged.


School of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering

This Page

Last updated:
Wednesday, 13 February, 2013 8:11 AM