Policy University Management Human Resources Policy Glossary

Human Resources Policy Glossary

Print Friendly and PDFPrint Friendly

Terms and definitions used in policies and procedures in the Human Resources chapter of the Policy Library.

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Person means a person of Australian Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent who identifies as an Australian Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person and who is accepted as such by their Australian Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community.

Academic Staff means a Staff Member engaged to undertake paid teaching, research and related duties as envisaged in the Position Classification Standards for Academic Staff in Schedule 5 of the JCU Enterprise Agreement. Academic Staff includes Casual Academic Staff engaged to undertake duties set out in Schedule 1 of the JCU Enterprise Agreement.

Adjunct is an honorary appointment made to a suitably qualified and experienced individual who has a close association with, and makes a significant voluntary contribution to, the academic, professional and/or clinical activities of the University.

Affiliate is a person (other than a Staff member or Student, including HDR candidates) who is affiliated with JCU by letter of appointment or invitation to work, research or study at the University for a particular activity and typically for a prescribed timeframe and who is bound to comply with the University’s policies during that period (for example, honorary appointees).

Agreement means the James Cook University Enterprise Agreement 2022.

Applicable Continuous Service for Special Studies Program (SSP) accruals means the period of continuous service calculated from the end date of the Staff Members previous SSP, or in circumstances where the Staff Member has not previously participated in SSP is calculated from the date the applicant meets Eligibility.

Authorisation means a mechanism where a Delegate authorises an appropriate JCU Staff Member to carry out actions which arise from a decision made by a Delegate where:

a. such enactment of that decision requires significant administration; and

b. does not involve further decision making.

Award for the purpose of Staff Study Assistance means a degree, diploma or certificate contained in the list of approved Awards of James Cook University.

Band means a delegation band specified in the Human Resources Delegation Register.

Break in Service means any period of time where a JCU Staff Member does not hold a current employment contract (i.e. fixed term or continuing) or is not participating in a casual engagement with JCU.

Class Attendance Leave means time off with or without pay to attend classes approved under the Staff Study Assistance Scheme.

Clinical Loading is payable to Academic Staff who are required by the University to be clinically active and are qualified medical, dental and veterinary practitioners as required by the appropriate jurisdiction in Australia or Queensland.

Conjoint means a Staff Member, who may be employed with an affiliate organisation/s, who contributes significantly to JCU in the form of learning and teaching, research (including PhD supervision), leadership and service, engagement or other activity as informed by a separate formal agreement and relevant schedule.

Conjoint Title means the title bestowed on the Conjoint by JCU commensurate with their experience and qualifications in-line with the criteria outlined in Appendix One of the Conjoint Procedure.

Conjoint Appointment involves a person being appointed to a single position that is shared by two or more parties (e.g., JCU and another organisation), where the appointee undertakes work on behalf of both/all parties.  A Conjoint appointee will most often be formally employed by one party (“employer”), but undertake duties for one or more other parties (“affiliate organisation/s”) as a part of their role, with or without the affiliate organisation/s contributing to the cost of the appointee’s salary.

Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) refer to Policy Glossary

Consultation means the conferring (including the provision of relevant and appropriate information), between the University, Staff and the unions that negotiated the Agreement, in such a way that the participants would have the opportunity to contribute to and influence the decision making process. Consultation does not mean having to reach a consensus agreement.

Continuous Service – means a period during which the Staff Member is employed by the University, but does not include any period (an excluded period) that does not count as service.  Unpaid periods of absence that do count as service include a period of stand-down, and a period of absence under community service leave.  Continuous service will cease where a break in service of greater than 90 days occurs between the end of one employment period and the commencement of another.

Course refer to Policy Glossary

Delegate means an appropriately qualified officer or group of persons empowered to act through a Delegation.

Delegation – is the authority granted to a Delegate by a person or body in whom a power is vested by legislation or otherwise, to independently exercise that power.

Dependent Child means a child who is less than 16 years of age who is normally resident with the Staff Member or, if over the age of 16 years, is a full-time student at a secondary school, college or university.

Disability Support Pension - the Commonwealth pension scheme to provide income security for persons with a disability as provided under the Social Security Act 1991 (Cth), as amended from time to time, or any successor to that scheme.

Disciplinary Action means action by the University to discipline a Staff Member in matters of Misconduct or Serious Misconduct and may include:

  • formal censure;
  • demotion by one or more classification levels or increments;
  • withholding of an increment increase;
  • suspension with or without pay;
  • termination of employment.

Emeritus Professor is a prestigious title which may be accorded to Professors who on retirement or resignation meet the criteria for the granting of the title.

Examination Leave means time off with or without pay to attend examinations through an approved Staff Study Assistance Program.

External activities: refers to activities of Academic Staff Members that are outside their terms of employment (as stated in their conditions of appointment) and that do not involve them acting as an agent for, or on behalf of, the University.

Fair Work Act means the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) as amended from time to time.

Fair Work Regulations means the Fair Work Regulations 2009 (Cth), as amended from time to time.

Family includes: a partner (including a former partner, a de facto partner, a former defacto partner of same or opposite sex) of the Staff Member; and a child (including an adult child, an adopted child, a foster child and a step child), a parent, grandparent, grandchild or sibling of the Staff Member or spouse of the Staff Member, and any other person or relationship agreed by the University as being a family member.

Financial Assistance for Staff Study Assistance includes payment of some or all of the tuition fees in respect of an approved course of study at JCU, which is reimbursed on achievement of a minimum pass grade. Financial assistance does not include amenities and services fees.

Formal Agreement means the agreement made by JCU and the affiliate organisation/s that underwrites the arrangements between the parties regarding the conjoint arrangements including any arrangement around reimbursement of a portion of the Conjoint’s salary or costs.

Full Academic Title means a person who currently work with the Queensland Hospital and Health Services Department and undertakes honorary activities for JCU.

Grievance is a real or perceived problem or concern raised by a Staff Member against a process, action, omission or decision, within the responsibility and control of JCU, which relates to employment or internal HR or related matters.

Head of Work Unit means the manager of a Division, College, Institute, Centre, Directorate or any successor structure. A Head of Work Unit would be a Staff Member in one of the following roles: Dean, Director, DVC, or Vice Chancellor. May also be referred to as an Organisational Group Head.

Honorary Appointments provide a mechanism for formally recognising suitably qualified and experienced individuals who have a close association with, and make a significant contribution to, the academic activities of JCU in a largely volunteer capacity on an ongoing basis without receiving payment for such services.  Honorary appointments apply to  Adjuncts, Full Academic Title Honorary Appointees, Conjoints, Vice Chancellor’s Fellow Appointees, and Visiting Scholar Appointees.

JCU means James Cook University.

Joint Consultative Committee is comprised of:

  • 4 Staff Members of the University elected by and from all Staff of the University covered by this Agreement;
  • 6 nominees of the unions who negotiated the Agreement and
  • management representatives as nominated by the University.

Locality Allowance means an allowance which is payable for the increased cost of living, climatic conditions and isolation in respect of specified locations in North Queensland.

Mandatory Training means training that is mandated (1) by the University Executive, (2) by a federal, state or local statute, regulation, policy, by an authorised agency, regulatory or accrediting body, or (3) to address any legal, financial, physical or other risk that could significantly impact the University.

Misconduct is conduct which is not Serious Misconduct but is nonetheless conduct which is improper or inconsistent with the Staff Member's duties or responsibilities. Misconduct may give rise to Disciplinary Action, but will not result in the termination of the employment of the Staff Member.

NES means the National Employment Standards located in Chapter 2 of the Fair Work Act.

Non-Award Subjects means subjects that do not lead to a formal award.

Ordinary Rate of Pay means the rate payable to the Staff Member for their ordinary hours of work, but does not include incentive-based payments and bonuses, loadings, monetary allowances, overtime and penalty rates, or any other separately identifiable amounts.

Professional and Technical Staff means a Staff Member engaged to undertake paid administrative, professional, technical or service activities as envisaged in the Position Classification Descriptors.

Relevant Minimum Wage means the minimum wage prescribed in the Supported Wages System award for the class of work for which an employee is engaged.

Research Support Staff means a Staff Member engaged to undertake professional or technical activities that support the dedicated research activities of the University and are envisaged in the Research Staff Classification Descriptors in Schedule 4.

Senior Staff means an Academic Staff Member employed as a head of a Work Unit or a more senior position, or a Professional and Technical Staff Member employed at HEW level 10C or above.

Serious Misconduct means

  • Serious misconduct as defined by the Fair Work Regulations 2009 (Cth) as amended from time to time; or
  • Any serious breach of the James Cook University Code of Conduct; or
  • Any serious breach of the James Cook University Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research; or
  • Corrupt Conduct as defined by the Crime and Corruption Act 2001 (Qld), as amended from time to time.

Seven-Day Shift Worker means, for the purpose of the additional week of leave provided by the NES, a 7-day shift worker who is regularly rostered to work on Sundays and public holidays in an institution in which shifts are continuously rostered 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

Special Studies Program (SSP) means an approved program of study or research that an Academic Staff Member may undertake, normally outside of the University.

Special Studies Program (SSP) Travel Costs – the cost of passports*, visas, tickets, travel insurance, airport taxes, airport transfers (including meals and overnight accommodation where necessary). Travel costs do not include excess baggage, vehicle hire (except in special circumstances where air, rail or bus transportation is not available), commuting costs (taxi fares, train fares, etc.), conference fees, freight, photocopying, hire or purchase of equipment, stationary, subsistence rates, accommodation costs other than in transit, and any other items not deemed to be official travel.

*Passports will only be reimbursed where the individual requires one specifically for the needs of the SSP.

Spouse means another person who, although may not be legally married to the person, lives with the Staff Member on a bona fide domestic basis.

Staff or Staff Member/s means the employees covered by the James Cook University Enterprise Agreement.

Staff Study Assistance Program (SSA) provides assistance to Staff Members to undertake an approved program of study to complete a formal undergraduate qualification at JCU.

Standard Hours means the span of hours in the Enterprise Agreement.

Student Contribution Amount means a payment that a Commonwealth supported student pays towards their education. This payment can be paid upfront or deferred through the HELP (previously HECS) scheme. The Student Contribution amount is a contribution to the total cost of tuition, with the balance paid by the Australia Government through the Commonwealth Grant Scheme.

Study Leave means time off with or without pay for the purpose of studying through an approved Staff Study Assistance Program.

Study Period refer to Policy Glossary

Supervisor means the person who immediately directs and oversees the work of a Staff Member or their work.

Supported Wage System (SWS) means the Commonwealth Government system to promote employment for people who cannot work at full award wages because of a disability.

Supported Wages System Approved Assessor means a person selected by the Supported Wages Management Unit (SWMU) established by the Commonwealth Government to perform assessments of an individual’s productive capacity within the SWS.

Supported Wage System Wage Assessment Agreement means the document that records the employee’s productive capacity and agreed wage rate.

Supported Wages System Assessment Instrument means the tool provided for under the Supported Wage System that records the assessment of the productive capacity of the person to be employed under the supported wage system.

Support Person and/or Representative means:

  • A Staff Member, or
  • A delegate or Staff Member of a union that negotiated this Agreement; and
  • Not a practising solicitor or barrister.

Tradesperson means a person who holds a recognised trade based qualification and uses that trade qualification in their position.

Tuition Fee means the fees payable to a University to undertake a course of study. For Commonwealth supported students this is equivalent to the Student Contribution amount, for fee paying students, this is equivalent to the full tuition fee amount. Tuition fees exclude the cost of field trips, workshops, equipment, books, placements and other education expenses).

Unit means a unit of study entered in the Unit Register of the James Cook University.

University means James Cook University.

Vice Chancellor’s Fellow is an Honorary appointee (e.g. an Adjunct; Appointee; Full Academic Title Honorary Appointee; Conjoint; and/or Visiting Scholar Appointee), who is additionally appointed by the Vice Chancellor to play a particular thought leadership role in an area of strategic importance for the University.

Visiting Scholar is an honorary appointment made to an Academic Staff Member and/or PhD student outside of Australia who undertakes an intensive period of Learning and Teaching or Research on behalf of and/or in collaboration with JCU, while in Australia.

Work Unit means Division, College, Institute, Centre, Directorate or any successor structure as determined by the University

Revision History


Implementation date



23-105/10/2023Glossary updated to align with JCU Enterprise Agreement 2022. Leadership definition relocated to Students and Teaching Policy Glossary as is associated with Academic Promotions which is no longer located within the HR policy domain.Manager, Industrial Relations and Policy



Glossary established to define terms commonly used in Human Resource policies and procedures.

Manager Industrial Relations and Policy


HR Glossary, HR definitions

Contact person

Manager, Industrial Relations and Policy