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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What will happen to my feedback and will it be confidential?

The feedback from this consultation will be shared with the Review Group so that we can develop the proposals further. All feedback will be shared but on an anonymous basis. No individuals will be identified in any way.

If the review results in a change of job titles as proposed, what happens to current staff and their job titles?

All existing staff would be offered the opportunity to simply change their title from the one they currently hold to the equivalent title in the new framework.

2. Does the change of titles have any implications for REF?

No – the key issue for REF would be about the nature of the contract rather than the specific job title. There are several Russel Group Universities who have made changes similar to the one that we propose.

3. Why have we not changed job titles at Level 7?

We have not as yet applied the title of “Assistant Professor” to R roles and T roles at level 7 simply because the title of “Assistant Professor” brings with it a requirement for a 5-year probation. We cannot make this change to terms and conditions for staff on R and T contracts without further and detailed discussions. So we have taken the view that we would want to progress the promotions work now and then return to discuss the probation issue as a later stage.

4. Can we review individual CVs to advise on where you currently stand within the scoring system?

We can’t do this centrally because of the volume of work that would be required given the large number of staff, but we would encourage individuals ,and their mentor/PDR reviewer/HoD to look at this framework to assess what individuals might need to do in order to build a credible promotions case.

5. Will there be any changes to probation?

No – probation arrangements will not change as a result of this work, although this work will provide an opportunity to provide more operational detail for probationers on what is expected of them. Moreover, it is proposed that we should re-visit probation processes in a separate piece of work

6. What does the proposal for a level 6 Research & Teaching contract mean?

This is being proposed as an option that some departments might wish to use (indeed some use something similar already). There would be no requirement to use such a grade (if it were created) but it would give a potentially useful option to bridge between PhD and a tenure track assistant professor post.