REF year saw more on teaching-only contracts

More academics were employed on teaching-only contracts around the time of the research excellence framework deadline, new figures show

December 18, 2014

Some .1 per cent of academic staff employed at UK universities on 1 December 2013 were on a teaching-only contract, compared with 25.2 per cent at the same point a year earlier, according to data published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency on 18 November.

Overall, some 52,575 staff were on teaching-only contracts, up by nearly 5,780 on 2012-13.

Conversely, the proportion of staff on teaching and research contracts fell from 51 per cent in 2012-13 to 48.6 per cent in 2013-14, the Hesa data show. Overall, the number of teaching and research staff remained roughly the same, falling by just 120 staff from 2012-13.

In total, 8,500 extra academics were employed at UK universities in 2013-14, up to 194,245 people in total, which represents a 4.7 per cent rise.

Nearly 2,000 more people were employed as a professor in 2013-14 compared with 2012-13, the figures also show. The number of professorial staff rose from 17,880 in 2012-13 to 19,745 in 2013-14, a 10.4 per cent rise.

About a quarter of professors (4,415 or 22.4 per cent) were women, slightly higher than the 21.7 per cent reported in 2012-13, Hesa says.

Overall, the number of staff employed in the higher education sector rose by 3.5 per cent in 2013-14, up to 395,780.

A total of 75,040 academic staff were employed on atypical contracts in 2013-14 – up by about 1,000 on 2012-13. A further 31,840 non-academic staff were also employed on atypical contracts.

The latest Hesa figures were published alongside contextual data for the REF, whose deadline for submission was 29 November 2013.

jack.grove@tesglobal.com

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Reader's comments (1)

Essential Reading on this serious issue (Open Letter signed by 40 academics on 25 April 2012) http://www.unions.qmul.ac.uk/ucu/docs/sbcs_open_letter.pdf For the record, no reply was ever received. Two further thoughts on the Times Higher Education reporting of the REF: There remains a difficulty with the improved tables produced where the university 'game playing' becomes obvious: some managers may have played even "harder ball" serving with full dismissals those academics not fitting their box-ticking for inclusion in the REF. I ask how such degradation of academic standing could be factored in. I also ask whether we can ask the Times Higher Education to rank the Universities on spinning of the outcome! My favourite so far: Last week our University was named in the top 10 multi-faculty universities for research in the UK! - this proposition linked to the University's own announcement as no independent observer has made any similar pronouncement so far… As I said - when academics don't tick the box they see the sack, when managers don't tick the box, they tick it. https://fanismissirlis.wordpress.com/2014/12/19/qmulref2014/

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