Staff Scholarship Scheme
The University encourages the continuous professional development of staff through the Effective Contribution Scheme and provides a number of ways in which individual and team development needs can be met. Through attendance at development events led by sector and professional associations, conferences, mentoring, and in-house events provided by University departments such as the centre for the Development of Staff and Academic Practice (CDSAP), Information Services (IS), Welsh for Adults and Human resources (HR), for example.
The University also wishes to provide opportunities for staff to study for a degree or higher degree at the University by providing funding or partial funding, subject to conditions which are designed to ensure that the University can balance the cost of funding or part-funding applications from staff with the financial sustainability of the university.
Qualifying employment period – 5 years continuous employment contract (any type of employment contract).
The employee should discuss their request at their Effective Contribution scheme meeting prior to completing an application.
The employee must complete the application form http://www.aber.ac.uk/en/postgrad/apply/ and submit to the Institute Director, Director of Professional Services of the Institute/Department in which they work. (or the relevant Pro Vice Chancellor in the case of an Institute Director or Director of Professional Service department or a member of the Vice Chancellor’s office). ‘The decision-maker’
If the application is for the next academic year, the application must be submitted prior to the 31st July preceding the start of the academic year.
The decision maker must decide if the Institute/Department can fund the total cost of the fee waiver or part-fund the cost of the fee-waiver and/or Paid time-off from employment is supported.
The decision, and the reason for the decision, will be recorded on the application form and communicated to the employee within 10 working days. Agreement for the waiving of fees and/or time off is NOT a guarantee of a place. This rests with the academic institute.
If the application is endorsed by the ID/HOPS/PVC the application and the decisions in respect of the fee waiver (full or part) and time off for study mean that the employee is in a position to apply for a place.
The application for the fee waiver and course should be sent to relevant admissions office (Undergraduate or Post-graduate) in the Admissions, Quality and Records office (AQRO) to create, record and commence the standard academic assessment/admissions process.
If the application is for the next academic year the application must be submitted by the 31 August preceding the start of the academic year.
The employee will be notified of the outcome by AQRO.
If approved the employee will be notified of the budget code they will require for the student registration process. Copes will be sent to the Director of AQRO, Director of Finance and the Employee Services team in HR for scanning in to the employee file.
Employees should note that there may be supplementary fees attached to the completion of their course, such as admissions or exam fees, or field trips, and the responsibility for the payment of these fees rests with the employee.
Employees who leave the University within 2 years of completing the degree or higher degree/Doctorate agreed under this scheme must pay back 50% of the total course fee within 6 months of leaving the employment of the University.
Work-related and in working hours
Here the course is undertaken in working hours and will support the enhancement of skills and capabilities necessary for the role and has been identified and agreed as such at the employees Effective Contribution Scheme meeting there will be no cost to the employee. However, if the employee does not complete the course the Department will be expected to pay the course fees. There is otherwise no charge to the employee or department.
Personal development (Non-Work related) outside of working hours
Employees may wish to undertake a lifelong learning course for personal development outside of working hours. To encourage staff to participate concessionary fees will be considered in line with the concessions offered to students. This would be by agreement with the Lifelong Learning department and depend on the number of full fee paying learners who have enrolled and an assessment of the financial viability of the course.
A key development in the revised Welsh Language Scheme is the importance of the Bilingual Skills Strategy as part of human resource planning. The strategy treats Welsh as a skill and provides a planned strategic approach to managing communication skills. It is essential therefore to offer, as far as is reasonably practicable, the opportunity for staff to develop their Welsh communication skills and this section provides clarity on the funding and time off work to those staff.
The university encourages all staff to learn Welsh or to improve their Welsh language skills as soon as they commence employment at the university and all staff are encouraged to undertake Welsh language courses from the commencement of their employment. This may be through advertised classes or through bespoke programmes in the workplace.
The University will allocate funds to support the cost of one hour per week of Welsh classes/tuition for employees whether the class/tuition is held during work time or out of working hours e.g. evenings. The funding will be allocated on first come first served basis and may be from departmental budgets or through a central fund managed by the Centre for Welsh Language Services. Funding of the cost of more than one hour of Welsh Language classes will be at the discretion of the employee’s Institute Director /HOPS.
Employees will be allowed, with the agreement of their line manager, up to one hour per week to study Welsh in work time. Any further time off during work’s time will be by agreement with the employee’s line manager and will include working back the additional time (over an hour) during the week.
Exam costs and other associated costs will be paid by the employee.
Agreed by Executive 14 February 2017