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Covid-19 allowances for reporting on academic probation progress

The options available to you to help Academic Staff Committee make allowances when assessing your progress against probationary objectives.


The options available to you

The University and Academic Staff Committee (ASC) appreciate that while many staff across the organisation worked extremely hard during the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure the same quality of service and support was available to our community, many experienced and continue to experience a great impact on various areas of their work. It is also recognised that the pandemic had an adverse impact on those on academic probation in being able to meet their objectives within the original timescales.

In discussion with Academic Heads of Department/Division, ASC and Deans of Faculty/School have agreed a set of options available for you to utilise to help ASC make allowances for any impact when assessing your progress at your next review.

It's important to know that probationary lecturers can decide to take any of the following options with the support of their Head of Department/Division. As a Head of Department/Division or nominated Reviewer, you should discuss these options with all probationary lecturers in your department.

The following options are available:

Option Approach When to use Forms/Templates
One Do nothing – keep objectives and review dates as is and report on progress as normal When the probationary lecturer has experienced little to no impact on being able to achieve original objectives within the original probation timeframe None required
Two Explaining mitigating circumstances – to include in review paperwork When the probationary lecturer has been able to meet the majority of their objectives within the original timeframe but wish to provide explanation for those which cannot be met by their next review and how they have tried to innovate to overcome this, along with HoD comments of support. Mitigating circumstances cover sheet to include with their Probation Review Form for assessment at their next probation review by ASC
Three Revise objectives – review original objectives When certain objectives have become difficult or unlikely to achieve but the probationary lecturer and HoD wish to keep to the original probation timeframe Revised objectives templates (separate templates for both Lecturer roles) To also be included for those choosing option 4
Four Request deferral – for next review When original objectives and revised objectives cannot be realistically achieved in the original probation timeframe. Decision to take option by the Probationary Lecturer with the support of the HoD. Deferral request template

Any queries related to these options should be directed to the Academic Career Progression Team via


If you have any questions, please contact us.

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