The University of Western Australia has become the first University in Australia to adopt a new structure for academic titles, aligning it with academic titles in Canada, the United States, East Asia and parts of Europe.
From January 1, 2009, the existing five academic ranks (plus a special category of Professorial Fellow) will be reduced to four and renamed.
The titles of Associate Lecturer, Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor, Professor (plus the special category of Professorial Fellow), will be replaced with Lecturer, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor (with three Professorial levels).
These titles will have a research staff equivalent.
Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Seares said the new academic titles would help retain existing staff as well as make UWA positions more visible and attractive to staff from overseas and interstate.
"Shifting to the new academic titles will make the University more competitive in the international labour market and align our titles with a significant part of the sector in the Northern hemisphere," he said.
"There is no downside to these changes for our academic staff. We believe this will help us to be more attractive as an employer of world-class academics and give our existing staff greater international standing."
Professor Seares said the design of the proposed academic career structure was developed after taking into account initial feedback from University staff and the experience of other universities.
She said the details around implementation of the new titles would be reached with the WA Branch of the National Tertiary Education Union.
Janine MacDonald (UWA Public Affairs) (+61 8) 6488 5563 / (+61 4) 32 637 716