Our Memorandum of Agreement with the University

What is the Memorandum of Agreement?

The role of the Association in representing faculty is largely prescribed in a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA, or M of A) between FAUW and the University of Waterloo. The MoA governs the relationship between the University and faculty members, including salary structure, academic freedom, discipline, and grievances. 

The MoA is our equivalent of a collective agreement. It was created in the 1990s as an alternative to union certification, though the latter is an option that remains open to faculty should they choose to exercise it. It differs from a collective agreement mainly in its (lack of) comprehensiveness. Much of what is typically covered in a collective agreement at other universities is covered in policy at Waterloo.

The Memorandum of Agreement serves two main purposes, which are:

  1. to set out terms and conditions of employment for Members, and to describe procedures for developing and revising Policies concerning terms and conditions of employment; and
  2. to define and describe the relationship between the University and the Association, to provide for regular communication and consultation between the University and the Association, and to provide means for resolving differences which may arise between them.

What's in the Memorandum of Agreement?

Not all terms of employment are captured in the Memorandum of Agreement; some are in University policies instead. The topics covered include:

  • Academic Freedom
  • Non-discrimination
  • Discipline
  • Grievance and Arbitration
  • Compensation Negotiations (this is summarized on our bargaining page)
  • Pension and Benefits (mostly vacation and FPER - details of the pension plan and other benefits are deferred to the Pension & Benefits Committee)
  • Faculty Salaries, Annual Selective Increases and Member Evaluation Procedures (we explain how salaries and increases work in our Faculty Guide)
  • Integrity in Scholarly Research
  • Program Redundancy
  • Financial Exigency
  • Lay-Offs

What's NOT in the MoA?

Faculty appointments, tenure, promotion, intellectual property, sabbaticals, parental leave, and a number of other important topics are covered in policy, not the Memorandum of Agreement.

Who is covered by the MoA?

FAUW is the official representative of the bargaining unit that includes all “regular faculty” at the University of Waterloo as set out in Policy 76 – Faculty Appointments—that's who's covered by the Memorandum of Agreement. We currently represent approximately 1,370 members.

We represent:

  • lecturers with appointments of one year or longer
  • assistant professors
  • associate professors
  • professors
  • clinical faculty at any of those ranks
  • part-time faculty with definite term appointments of one year or longer

We do not represent:

  • faculty members with administrative positions at the level of dean or above;
  • graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research assistants, or research associates
  • research professors
  • lecturers with appointments of less than one year (colloquially referred to as "sessional" instructors)
  • other “special appointments” such as visiting professors and experts in residence
  • librarians
  • faculty at St. Jerome's, Grebel, St. Paul's, or Renison

See section 2.1 of the Memorandum of Agreement for more information.

How changes are made to the MoA

Minor changes can be worked out informally at Faculty Relations Committee.

Non-minor changes require approval from both FAUW and the UW Board of Governors. We normally seek approval from our members first.