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Solent UCU Branch Meeting Summary
On Friday the 29th of March 2019 UCU members at Solent University held a meeting which focused on academic workload planning, career pathways, progression of lecturers, the issue with unit surveys and the issue of annual leave and RSA.
Mark Farwell hosted the meeting laying out the agendas of the day. The first issue highlighted was about Academic Workload Planning (AWP). It was clear that UCU members were not impressed with the University’s structure of AWP. The atmosphere in the meeting was that most lecturers felt that they are doing more than the hours set up in the AWP guidelines. One of the members suggested that they are recording the amount of hours they are currently doing then will present them at the end of the academic year as concrete evidence that most lecturers are doing more than the hours set up in the Academic Workload Planning.
Another highlighted was the staff to student ratio at some of the units across courses at the university. The issue surrounding health and safety should not be overlooked by university’s and the UCU board discussed the issue summing up that it is difficult to have a seminar session with 30+ students who will probably need feedback within the provided two hours of a seminar session.
Another issue raised was the unit surveys that are carried out by the university. Based on the meeting, there was a call for withdrawal for the unit surveys mainly because the board viewed them as a strain for students and the main one which is the question whether unit surveys comply with GDPR guidelines.
To conclude the meeting a motion to withdraw the unit surveys was passed as every member who attended the meeting voted in support to withdraw the unit surveys carried out across all units at the university.