Outside Activities Policy


March 25, 1999

Revision Date


A 30.04

Revision No.

  1. Preamble

    A full-time academic appointment entails a year-round commitment to the various responsibilities of a faculty member. In order to protect the University as well as individual faculty members, it is important to ensure that the faculty member’s professional obligations to students, colleagues and the institution have primacy and are fully discharged, and that university resources are used appropriately.

  2. Policy

    2.1 A faculty member should not undertake activities which prevent the due discharge of any of his/her University responsibilities. If some temporary circumstance prevents such due discharge , the academic administrator to whom he/she is responsible may recommend full or partial release time without pay. If a full-time faculty member wishes to undertake any outside activity preventing due discharge of any of his/her University responsibilities beyond a single two week period in a semester, he/she will be required, if eligible, to take an unpaid leave of absence or a modified appointment.

    2.2 The paramount obligations of the faculty member notwithstanding, the University recognizes that competence and effectiveness of faculty may be enhanced by their participation in certain kinds of outside activities. Their participation may also enhance the purpose of the University in serving the needs of the larger community by fostering the transfer and application of knowledge.

    2.3 This policy requires that faculty members must notify the University of their involvement in outside activities. Certain outside activities must receive prior approval, which may include a requirement to reimburse the University for the use of any University resources. Authorization to engage in outside activities shall be withheld if they would prevent or impede the due discharge of the faculty member’s University responsibilities. Faculty members must submit a written report of outside activities annually.

    2.4 Faculty members are responsible for conforming with the requirements of this policy. Failure to do so will be grounds for discipline under the Disciplinary Measures Policy.

  1. Definitions

    3.1 Related outside activities are those which involve the same kind of specialized skills and knowledge that the faculty member uses in the employ of the University. Activities such as teaching at other post-secondary institutions, private contracts, consulting, professional practice, being an officer of a company whose business relates to the teaching/research interests of the faculty member and serving on a board of directors when not at the request of the University are examples of related outside activities.

    3.2 Unrelated outside activities are those which are distinct from the work done for the University by the faculty member, such as running an unrelated business, community work and volunteer work.

    3.3 Related outside activities which are exempt from this policy are those which constitute service to the faculty member’s discipline or to the University. These include teaching in the University’s Continuing Studies Program, being an external reviewer for a department at another university, being an external referee for a promotion or tenure case, acting as a peer reviewer for a granting agency or publisher, serving as editor of a journal in one’s area of expertise, serving as a local, regional, national or international representative on a professional organization and serving on a board of directors at the University’s request.

  1. Prior Notification and Approval

    4.1 Any outside activity which would result in the rescheduling, delegation or non-fulfillment of any regular teaching duties, office hours or departmental committee service requires the prior approval of the Chair.

    4.2 Before1 accepting a commitment in one of the following categories, the faculty member must notify the Chair and the Dean promptly, in writing, stating the nature of the outside activity, the time commitment involved, and the University resources entailed.

    1. any outside activity or activities which may impair a faculty member’s research/scholarly productivity;

    2. teaching a related course for another post-secondary institution;

    3. any related outside activity that makes more than a minor use of University resources and

    4. all unrelated outside activities that make any use of University resources.

    In recommending the approval of a request from a faculty member which involves the use of university resources, the Chair shall require appropriate reimbursement to the University.

    Where the Chair/Dean concludes that an outside activity will likely prevent the due discharge of the faculty members employment responsibilities, he/she will not authorize participation in the outside activity and will notify the faculty member promptly in writing.

  1. Annual Disclosure

    5.1 To ensure that the objectives of this policy are fulfilled, every faculty member shall submit an Annual Report of Outside Activities to his/her Chair. The Annual Report form will be circulated in January of each year.

    5.2 The nature, extent and timing of all related outside activities shall be cataloged in the Annual Report, along with the use of any University resources. Faculty members are also asked to confirm that any unrelated outside activities undertaken did not interfere with their employment obligations to the University and did not use University resources which were not reimbursed. The completed Annual Report may be considered by the chair of the departmental tenure committee during the salary review process.

    5.3 Departmental summaries shall be forwarded to the Dean and then to the Vice President Academic.

    1 Where the outside activity opportunity arises at short notice , making prior notification impractical, the faculty member must inform the Chair and the Dean of the commitment undertaken as soon as possible thereafter.

    Outside Activity Form (pdf)