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Part-time and hourly-paid staff

23 October 2006

There are two types of part-time staff employed in the higher education system:

  • Fractional part-time staff who are employed on a fraction of the full-time post and therefore should be entitled to pro-rata pay and terms and conditions of service. If you are employed on a fractional contract but not being employed on pro-rata pay and terms and conditions of service then you should contact your UCU branch officer for advice and support.

  • Hourly paid part-time staff who are the most casual group of staff in the sector - they are employed and paid by the hour, usually on termly or annual (nine month) contracts. They suffer double casualisation by being both part-time and fixed-term.

In 2004 the union agreed new guidance on calculating an hourly rate of pay for staff in post-92 institutions which for the first time linked the pay of an hourly paid lecturer to that of a full time lecturer using the new Framework Agreement pay scale. This agreement provides incremental progression and the prospect of progression between grades for hourly paid lecturers who in future should be graded as lecturers in exactly the same manner as their full time colleagues. Visit our framework agreement section for more details.

There is no equivalent national agreement in the pre-92 sector; however UCU does require all hourly-paid staff to be included in Framework Agreement implementation and for rates of pay to relate to the new pay and grading structures.

UCU's aim is reduce the use of part-time hourly paid contracts in higher education institutions and for all regular part-time staff to be employed on permanent fractional contracts on pro-rata pay and terms and conditions. In furtherance of this aim UCU has negotiated conversion agreements in the number of institutions to enable the transfer of part-time staff onto pro-rata contracts.

Further information:

Last updated: 11 October 2019