Joint statement J4CS and the Colleges, University and Office for Intercollegiate Services 25/1

On Thursday 25th January representatives of the Cambridge UCU Justice 4 College Supervisors (J4CS) campaign met with representatives of the Colleges, University, and the Office of Intercollegiate Services (OIS).


Present at that meeting:

Cambridge UCU: Lydia Richards (UCU regional official), Matthew Lloyd Roberts (UCU Postgraduate Rep), Emily Sandford (UCU Casualisation Rep), Ali Suriel (PhD student).


Colleges, University and OIS:
Richard Anthony (Chair, Bursars’ Committee), Judith Bunbury (Associate Secretary, Senior Tutors’ Committee), Malcolm Millbrook (Deputy Head of OIS), Bhaskar Vira (Pro-VC for Education).


We discussed the Undergraduate Supervisor Workload Survey, which was sent to supervisors on 15th January 2024. We are very pleased with the response rate to the survey so far and encourage supervisors to continue to respond and fill in the survey up to the deadline Friday 9th February.


At this meeting we further agreed on how the data from the survey will be presented. There will be an initial report of the Survey’s findings following feedback from both sides, which will present the quantitative data. This will be followed by a second report which will present further findings and qualitative data. These reports, which will be published in due course, will inform ongoing discussions about the supervision system.


During this meeting we also discussed the schedule for meetings in Lent Term and their relationship to the timeline of forthcoming meetings across the governance structures of the Colleges and University, in line with the decision-making process outlined in the Programme of Work.


On Friday 26th January there will be an Extraordinary Joint Meeting of the Bursars’ Business Committee and the Senior Tutors’ Business Committee, to discuss the supervision system. In today’s meeting, UCU representatives clarified feedback collated from campaign members on the draft Supervision Guidance document produced by OIS.


Lastly, we discussed the payment for compulsory training for new supervisors, which was established by the Colleges in 2023 in line with a key J4CS demand. This payment has been slightly delayed by the introduction of the CamCORS 7 update but should be underway shortly. We agreed that in the future Departments and the Cambridge Centre for Teaching and Learning should make the timeline for these payments clear to new supervisors.