Deciding if a role is undertaking academic research
In some cases it is not immediately clear if a role is undertaking academic research and should therefore be classified as a category '2 Research only' contract or not. The following information is intended to help you decide if the role is undertaking research or not.
The primary function of the role must be to undertake academic research
Teaching makes up less than 16% of contracted hours (this equates to less than 6 hours per week for a 1 FTE role on grade 6+)
The role is grade 6+ (otherwise please contact us to discuss classifying a grade 1-5 role as research)
Roles similar to the generic research job descriptions on the Reward Team website
Contracts classified to the sub-categories 'AR Research Fellow' and 'AP Research Staff' are eligible to be considered for the Research Excellence Framework
Contracts coded to 'AS Research Support' are not eligible to be considered for the Research Excellence Framework even if they are on a category '2 Research only' code
What is academic research?
Studying a subject, field or problem to discover new knowledge, facts and principles
This study leads investigation and often writing (or a contribution to writing) for scholarly publications and books, based upon the idea under inquiry
Work that aims to generate hypotheses as well as work that aim to test them
Research can be quantitative (designed to test a hypothesis) or qualitative (identifies and explores themes following established methodology)
The employee must be doing some of the investigations, analysis and thinking that establish the new knowledge, facts and principles or test the hypotheses
What is not academic research?
Investigation, background literature reviews or collations that do not lead on to the generation of new knowledge, facts and principles; e.g. background investigation into the state of a field for knowledge exchange
Undertaking data collection or sample processing (such as clinical trails or laboratory assays) where the employee does not then analyse the data to establish new facts, principles and hypotheses; e.g. clinical trials data collection, laboratory technical assistants
Investigative work for policy or process change in non-academic departments (i.e. departments within University Administration and Services)