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Website URL : http://www.ucu.org.uk/5799
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Workload and Stress

Rising workloads - linked to job and funding cuts and the increasing intensity of work in post-16 education - are a growing problem. Following a number of key decisions hy UCU Congress, UCU is committed to campaigning to control workloads and tackle performance management strategies and occupational stress and bullying in the sector.

Visit also our dedicated workload campaign site

image depicting Workload and stress

The workload campaign will be using publication of results for individual colleges and universities from UCU's 2012 stress survey to highlight particular areas of concern related to stress and workload, and to encourage local negotiation with employers to tackle these issues.

The campaign includes:

Stress poster slideshow : Stress poster slideshowAs well as posters and stickers to help publicise 'UCU Anti-stress and Bullying Week', we also have leaflets for staff on what to do if you're experiencing problems at work with either stress or bullying - find these resources below.

Robust management or bullying?

Some employers accused of bullying often claim that it isn't bullying, it is simply a robust managerial approach; and that in an academic environment, staff should be able to deal with that by argument and debate. This simple questionnaire should help you test if your employer is a bully or merely 'robust':  (.doc) file type icon Robust management style or bullying? (.doc) [131kb]

The 2012 UCU stress survey results

Workload demands

Higher education:

Further education:

See also:

Relationships and bullying

Higher education

Further education

See also:


Higher education

See also:

Peer Support and Managerial Support

Higher education

Change and role

Higher education


Adult education

Further education

Higher education


Campaign materials

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Ban bullying in education' leaflet (.pdf) [108kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' leaflet (.pdf) [86kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' poster - pressure gauge (.pdf) [358kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' poster - head in hand (.pdf) [405kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' poster - blood pressure (.pdf) [114kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' poster - pile of papers (.pdf) [203kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Workplace stress' poster - with doctor (.pdf) [108kb]

 (.pdf) file type icon 'Stress is a workplace hazard' sticker (.pdf) [20kb]

 'Workplace violence - don't ignore it' poster - male (.pdf) [74kb]

 Bullies are a workplace hazard - poster (.pdf) [122kb]

 Cyber-bullying is a workplace hazard - poster (.pdf) [77kb]

 Staff notice: this is no place for... - poster (.pdf) [151kb]

 No entry for bullies - poster (.pdf) [65kb]

 No entry for bullies - poster 2 (.pdf) [90kb]

 'Workplace violence - don't ignore it' poster - female (.pdf) [67kb]


A copy of the England FE national agreement on workloads can be found at

 (.doc) file type icon Guidance on regulating working hours in further education colleges, Nov 09 (England) (.doc) [275kb]

For further advice on the agreement

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