FAQ - Joint statement on Policy 76/77 agreement

What are the transition arrangements for current Lecturers?

Definite-term Lecturers will generally receive new contracts with the same end date at the rank of Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream. There are the following exceptions:

  • DT Lecturers who have spent more than five years in the same DT role and who were appointed after an open search and the hiring process was reviewed by UARC, will be appointed probationary Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream.
  • DT Lecturers who have spent fewer than five years in a position they were hired into after an open search reviewed by UARC may, at the discretion of the Dean, be offered a probationary Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream appointment without the need for another search.

Continuing Lecturers will have the option of receiving an appointment as Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, with permanence, without needing to go through the promotion and permanence process. Those who opt not to can retain their Continuing Lecturer status. The terms and conditions for CLs will remain the same as they were prior to the creation of the new teaching streams, except that maximum course-assignment loads will apply to them.

Will I be expected to do Professional and Pedagogical Development that I was not expected to do before?

The PDC recognized that the term “Professional and Pedagogical Development” was the cause of considerable confusion and some misinformation. References to PPD have therefore been removed from the agreed changes to the policy. Instead, recognizing that current policy already states and that everyone agrees teaching is more than what occurs in classes, there are references to the University’s Teaching Effectiveness Framework. The sides have agreed on an addendum to the Framework to clarify its interpretation.

What is clearly “additional” is the expectation of educational leadership by those who hope to be promoted to Professor, Teaching Stream. This highest rank should designate a career of substantial accomplishment. The course reduction credit system provides additional opportunity for permanent teaching stream faculty to pursue educational leadership projects.

I am a Clinical Lecturer. Is the policy the same for me as for everyone else?

Mostly yes. For instance, Continuing Clinical Lecturers will have the option of transitioning to the rank of Clinical Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, or of remaining Clinical Lecturers. The PDC has recommended that the Faculty Relations Committee strike a short-term working group to address some particular complications. For instance, policy explicitly says that teaching in all three terms is expected for Clinical tenure track faculty, so some consideration of how the one-in-six no assigned courses term ought to work for clinical teaching stream faculty is needed.

Why was it necessary to finalize the agreement in the presence of the mediator?

The mediator will remain seized with respect to any dispute regarding the interpretation, application or implementation of the Memorandum of Settlement between FAUW and the University.

I am currently a lecturer. Does the new rank change my pay?

Salaries have not been part of these discussions. The agreed Memorandum of Agreement revisions include default salary floor and threshold values that will allow salary adjustments and completion of new contracts based on current salaries for Lecturers. The agreement is without prejudice to any position that either FAUW or the University may take with respect to salary floors and thresholds in salary negotiations.

Will the Memorandum of Agreement section on adjusting weightings change?

The MoA provisions providing for time-limited adjustments to weightings (for both teaching stream and tenure stream) faculty members remain unchanged (section 13.5.5). The MoA states that the default weightings for teaching stream faculty are 80% teaching and 20% service, and the revised Policies are clear that it is normal for teaching stream faculty to have non-zero weightings only in teaching and service.

It is important not to confuse “being a scholar” with “having a scholarship weighting,” as the teaching effectiveness framework and the new addendum make clear that for teaching stream faculty many scholarly activities (e.g., scholarship of teaching and learning) count as educational leadership and so as teaching for performance review purposes.

What is the incentive to move from Associate Professor, Teaching Stream to Professor, Teaching Stream?

This will parallel the current situation for Tenure Stream faculty. Promotion from Associate Professor to Professor rarely brings an increase in pay because of our salary structure. Faculty members opt to pursue promotion to Professor for reasons of prestige, ambition, recognition in the profession, etc. Many choose to remain Associate Professors.  The sorts of activities that enhance one’s case for promotion to Professor are highly valued in the faculty performance review process, so the incentives to do well on APR/BPR are indirect incentives for promotion to Professor.

What will the application process for promotion to Professor, Teaching Stream entail and when can the process start?

As with promotion to Professor in tenure stream, the candidate will notify the department Chair of their desire to apply for promotion, preparation of a candidate brief, and nomination of potential referees. Unlike the case of promotion to Professor in the tenure stream, some referees may be internal to the University of Waterloo. The candidate file will be reviewed and voted on by the Department Tenure, Permanence and Promotion Committee (DTPPC) and the Faculty TPPC, and reviewed by the University TPPC. The rights of appeal of decisions are also parallel to the case for promotion on the tenure stream.

The process will begin shortly after the policy changes are approved so that we can meet the target date for implementation which is September 1, 2024.

How is this going to affect sessional instructors?

Sessional instructors are not represented by FAUW, and these policy changes are not directly relevant to them.

How does the result for Teaching Stream faculty compare to other institutions?

Maximum course loads will be clearly lower than any other university in Canada for definite-term faculty, and as low as any other university in Canada for permanent or probationary faculty. Many Universities do not use the term “professor” in the names of Teaching Stream ranks. The guarantee of eligibility for governance and service roles is very strong.

For the University, the way the agreement recognizes, rewards and incentivizes Teaching Stream faculty for educational leadership activity will raise the calibre of teaching and learning at Waterloo, and the agreement facilitates the hiring and retaining of excellent colleagues with a commitment to a career as university teachers.

When will we be reopening Policy 76/77 again to continue negotiations on outstanding issues?

There are no current plans to “reopen” this policy. Many aspects to P76/77 that are not specifically about Teaching Stream faculty were set aside so the current PDC could focus on Teaching Stream issues. It is possible that these will need attention at some point. It is always possible for either the University or FAUW to raise issues about any F or FS policy at Faculty Relations Committee at any time.

After the five-year limit, will Definite-Term Teaching Stream faculty automatically transition to Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream?

No. The policy is explicit in not building in any such automatic transition. Definite-term contracts have a definite end date with no additional employment guarantees.  Definite-term faculty are always eligible to apply for any advertised probationary appointment in either the Tenure or Teaching Stream. After five years in definite-term appointments in either stream, faculty members are no longer eligible for definite-term faculty appointments at Waterloo.

Why will Teaching Stream faculty be eligible for course reductions to pursue educational leadership activities, but Tenure Stream faculty will not be offered that opportunity?

Tenure Stream faculty have access to sabbatical. While such leave is most often devoted to disciplinary scholarship, the purpose of sabbatical is more general: “to contribute to professional development, enabling members to keep abreast of emerging developments in their particular fields and enhancing their effectiveness as teachers, researchers and scholars.” (Policy 3).

Why did negotiations not settle on a solution where faculty would be given more agency regarding the distribution of their teaching load (e.g., a mandatory 3-3-0 as opposed to 2-2-2 every second year)?

The policy revisions attempt to reinforce the language around the right to the “one-in-six" term without assigned courses to teach. If an instructor strongly prefers to teach 2-2-2 and 2-2-2, this is not ruled out by policy, but the unit cannot compel it and the language clarifies that pressure to give up a no-courses-assigned term is not appropriate. For both Tenure Stream and Teaching Stream faculty, assignment of duties is the responsibility of the Chair/Director (see policy 40). In some departments, it may be necessary to assign courses in a way that does not match preferences due to the needs of the programs.

Can you provide some scenarios of common teaching loads under this agreement?

There are many possible teaching loads for those teaching 12 courses over 2 years. Some will include 6 courses in each year, while others might include 7 courses one year and 5 the next or vice-versa. Within a given year, many already teach 3-3-0 (in some order), 2-2-2, or 3-2-1.  To facilitate the one-in-six term, many may teach 2-2-2, 3-3-0 or 3-2-2, 3-2-0.  Some who have been teaching 2-2-2, 2-2-2, for example, may prefer to keep their current pattern rather than take a “one-in-six” term, but assigning courses to teach in every term is only allowed if the faculty member prefers it and it is also in the interests of the department.

When can someone use their accumulated course credits for a teaching reduction? Will a teaching load of 12 over two years and 10 over two years be eligible for a teaching reduction?

The conditions for using this reduction are quite flexible. After having taught 13 courses, a faculty member is eligible for a one course reduction to pursue an Education Leadership project. They can also accumulate these credits so that after teaching 26 courses, they are eligible for a two-course reduction and can pursue a larger project, or 39 courses and have a three-course reduction. Those teaching 12 courses every two years will reach these numbers sooner than those teaching 10. If a faculty member chooses to accumulate course reduction credits without using them, in year 7 they will have accumulated enough course credits to get an additional no-courses-assigned term.

Can we take on teaching additional courses with a sessional contract?

Overload teaching is allowed, except in the “one-in-six" terms without assigned courses. If it is paid, in most parts of the University it generally does not count for performance review.

What happens if the amendments to Policy 76/77 are not accepted? Do we start over again?

If this agreement is not accepted, the University will work with the current Policies 76 and 77, and the various memoranda and other practices that were put into place.

Can we begin using new titles now or do we have to wait until September?

The new titles will take effect on the effective date of the agreement, targeted for September 1, 2024.

Will newly hired Teaching Stream faculty require a PhD or a Master’s degree?

The language around qualifications roughly parallels the current language for Tenure Stream, with explicit recognition that in some cases industrial or professional experience is relevant for the selection of a teaching stream faculty member: “An Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream often has a doctorate, a terminal professional degree or credential, or special industrial, professional or other experience that is highly valuable for teaching in their discipline, as well as strong potential or experience in teaching.”

Will Teaching Stream faculty be required to take a no-courses-assigned term (and as a result, possibly modify their teaching pattern) once in six terms, or will it be optional?

In the revised policy, taking a “one-in-six" term is not required. The policy revisions strengthen the language ensuring that Teaching Stream faculty have the right to a one-in-six no-assigned-courses term, so that only those who prefer to teach every term will do so.

Can an Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream progress to Associate Professor, Teaching Stream in a time shorter time than five years (e.g., three years as was available under the old Definite-Term Lecturer to Continuing Lecturer process)?

The policy parallels the timelines for the Tenure Stream. It is possible to ask for early consideration for permanence, with the approval of the DTPPC, in exceptional circumstances. But in general, the timelines are an initial three-year probationary appointment, followed by consideration for reappointment; a second probationary appointment, with a guarantee of consideration for permanence, normally in year 5. Current Continuing Lecturers can opt for an automatic appointment as Associate Professors, Teaching Stream with permanence. For those who have been teaching at Waterloo for some years already as definite-term Lecturers and who are appointed as probationary Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream, this experience can be considered as an exceptional circumstance towards early consideration.

Why should Teaching Stream faculty with permanence, but not tenure, have the same academic freedom as Tenure Stream faculty?

The agreement guarantees the same protections for permanence as for tenure in the policy.

Can you provide more details for people with UARCed Definite-Term Lecturer contracts who could have anticipated consideration for Continuing Lecturer soon?

This is not part of the agreement, but the PDC sent the following request to the President of FAUW and the Provost: “The PDC members jointly recommend to FRC that consideration be given to one-time arrangements to allow appropriate DTLs with sufficient experience to receive approval from the Dean and DTP(P)C (likely before the implementation date of Policy 76 and Policy 77) for early consideration for Associate Professor, Teaching Stream as part of 2024/2025 Tenure, Permanence and Promotion processes. Such consideration would need to include timelines, possibly adjusted from standard practice, to balance the needs of candidates and committees to prepare and review applications.”

How do the policy changes balance the teaching load of Tenure Stream faculty, usually expected to teach four courses per year for 40% of their total workload, compared to the six per year of Teaching Stream faculty for 80% of their total workload?

Course assignment loads vary for both Teaching Stream and Tenure Stream faculty between programs and faculties, as do other teaching expectations (e.g., amount of graduate supervision). As a result, the changes to the Policies will affect these comparisons differently across campus. Reasons for the apparent difference in ratio include the additional value that Teaching Stream faculty provide to the University in achieving its teaching mission, including Education Leadership contributions that will improve the quality of teaching and learning at the institution, and the different kinds of teaching assignments (e.g., larger sections involving more coordination of TAs).

What will the requirements and process be for Teaching-Stream faculty to be promoted to Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, and under what circumstances might permanence not be granted?

After three years in an initial probationary appointment, a faculty member is considered for a second probationary appointment. If reappointed, they normally apply for permanence in year 5, though they can delay consideration until year 6. Steps include notifying the Chair of one’s intentions by the deadline, preparing a “candidate’s brief” with relevant evidence, and nominating referees. The full package is assessed and voted on by the Department, Faculty, and University Tenure, Permanence, and Promotion committees.

The standards for promotion to Associate Professor, Teaching Stream as indicated in the draft policy include: “a record as a strong teacher committed to academic and pedagogical excellence; and a record of satisfactory professional, university or community service”, with higher standards for service for Teaching Stream faculty with at least 40% as their service weighting.

As on the Tenure Stream, applications for promotion to Associate Professor, Teaching Stream might be turned down. It is hard to say anything general about why this might happen beyond it being the result of a failure to meet the standards listed in Policy.

What is the immediate impact to academic units and when will changes to Policy 76/77 be implemented?

The target date for implementation is September 1, 2024. Chairs should expect to hear from their Deans about the work for units that have current Teaching Stream faculty, as they will need new employment contracts. Since most units where assigned course loads have historically been higher than 12 reduced them in anticipation of this agreement, the effect on teaching assignments should be minimal. Units will generally need to keep track of one-in-six terms and accumulated course reduction credits for Teaching Stream faculty and should begin carefully doing so as of September.

There will be further implications for units over time (e.g., there will be a need to ensure that departmental and faculty performance review guidelines are consistent with the revised policy). The University and the Faculty Relations Committee will strive to communicate these needed changes with plenty of time to allow their implementation.