Professional Development Fund


For further information on Professional Development, please consult Article 18 of the Collective Agreement.

As per clause 18.05 and 18.06, instructors who have been on the seniority list for at least two years are eligible to make a request for professional development funds up to a maximum of $3000 per year. In addition, as per clause 18.04, a group of instructors, the Union or the University may apply for funding for collective professional development activities once these have been endorsed by the Labor Relations Committee. The total funds available for collective applications are capped at 25% of the funds available in a given year. Applications must be submitted by June 15th and the funds are allocated by July 15th.

Members

Sherry Blok
sherryblok@videotron.ca​
Ashok Kaushal
ashok_kaushal@hotmail.com

Guidelines for Allocating Professional Development Funds

The following guidelines were established by the Professional Development Committee, as per clause 18.03 of the Collective Agreement.

I. General Information


A. The Professional Development Fund

The University and the Union recognize the benefits to be gained by professional development activities. Accordingly, on June 1 every year the University provides a professional development fund equal to 1% of total salaries spent for part-time instructors (excluding benefits) during the preceding twelve months. Added to this will be the unspent money remaining in the fund on May 31 of each year. It must be noted that the amount of unspent funds reported cannot exceed one-third of the budget allocated for the year that is ending.

All Instructors whose names have appeared on the seniority list of a Continuing Education department for at least two (2) years are eligible to request professional development funds up to a maximum of $3,000 per year. Instructors who receive money from the fund must adhere to the University Policy for Travel and Other Allowable Expenses (Policy # CFO-3) and they must submit an expense report to the Professional Development Committee, within ten days following the completion of the activity. In addition, the recipient of monies from the fund must submit a written report of his/her activities to the instructors of his/her department, with a copy to the Professional Development Committee, by the end of the session following the completion of the activity. Failure to submit a report within the prescribed deadlines, or the submission of a report deemed to be unsatisfactory by the Committee will disqualify the applicant from receiving further funding until the situation is rectified.

Collective Professional Development Activity Requests

Up to 25% of the total funds available may be allocated to collective professional development activities. Applications for collective professional development activities may come from a group of Instructors, the Union or the University, and must be endorsed by the Labour Relations Committee in order to be considered by the Professional Development Committee.

B. Administration of the Fund: The Professional Development Committee

Administration of the fund is carried out by a parity committee (the Professional Development Committee) composed of two representatives appointed by the University, and two chosen by the Union. The University representatives for the period of June 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013 are David Gobby and Brenda Grant. The Union representatives are Sherry Blok and Michael Furholter.

II. Guidelines for Allocating Professional Development Funds


A. Fundable Activities

Faculty may request money from the fund for the following individual professional development activities:

  • to pursue university studies leading to a degree or diploma (tuition fees);
  • to attend or make presentations at conventions, conferences, seminars or workshops;
  • to carry out research or produce articles or documents for publication;
  • to attend training sessions, workshops, etc., relevant to the subject they teach.

When the recipient of a grant requires a substitute to teach his/her class in order to carry out the activity, the cost of the substitution will be paid for from the Professional Development Fund and must be included in the request for funding.

Groups of instructors, the Union or the University may request money form the fund for the following collective professional development activities:

  • to organize training sessions, workshops, etc. to be offered to the instructors in one or more departments;
  • to organize targeted training sessions, workshops, etc. to be offered to subgroups of instructors from a department.

B. Activities Not Funded

Money will not be allocated from the Fund for the following:

  • Normal departmental costs and responsibilities (e.g., to pay for visiting speakers, classroom supplies, teaching materials or curriculum and program development):
  • Course development (although activities which enhance teaching and contribute to course development, such as participating in workshops, conducting research, etc., will be funded);
  • Projects whose principal purpose is the creation of a money-making property for the applicant;
  • Capital equipment (e.g., a computer, software, books);
  • Payments to a publisher to publish a book
  • Payments to the applicant for his/her time.

C. Other Fund Allocation Criteria


1. The following criteria define limits on fund allocation: Decisions regarding the disbursement of funds will depend on the availability of funds and the number and quality of applications. The goal of the Committee is to fund as many applicants as possible and no application will be rejected if it meets the criteria and funds are available. To make funds available to as many members as possible, the Committee will give lower priority to, or may even exclude, applicants who received funding in the same or preceding academic year. In the case of instructors who have received unsatisfactory evaluations in accordance with Article 15.03 and 15.04, only requests for development related to the improvement of their teaching will be considered.

2. In the case of conferences, the Committee will give priority to those presenting a paper or giving a workshop, but will also fund simple attendance. Presenters are requested to indicate their affiliation with Concordia University. Depending on funding available, presentation of a paper will receive full funding while simple attendance may be funded as a percentage of total costs.

3. If available funds are insufficient to fund all applications, partial funding may be provided to some or all of the applicants. Criteria used to allocate funding in these cases include: taking into account how much money the applicant has already received from the Fund; a consideration of how directly related the project is to teaching functions; and an evaluation of which project(s) will be of greater perceived benefit to Continuing Education.

4. The committee will take into account the extent to which departments are represented in the allocation of money, to ensure that the various departments are fairly included in fund distribution. The goal is to have an equitable balance of representation from all departments.

5. Applicants may request money for only one project in each distribution. A request for travel money to three conferences on the same theme is considered to be three different projects. The exception to this is that a member may also apply for an inexpensive ($150 or less) local workshop or conference.

6. Applicants who received money to fund one activity, but would like to request a transfer to another activity, must provide a letter to the committee explicitly stating why this transfer has been requested. In addition, they must submit a complete description of the replacement activity including a detailed description of how it will benefit their teaching at the centre, an itemized list of expenses and all the related published official documentation on the activity. . The committee will review this request and respond to the applicant within 21 (twenty-one) days of receipt of the request.

7. The Instructor who is unable to participate in a professional development activity for serious reasons which are beyond her or his control (such as illness, death of a family member, the cancellation of a conference, the need to participate in other Centre activities or any other reason deemed to be valid by the Committee) must inform the Committee and cancel all reservations as soon as possible. He or she will be reimbursed only for the part of the grant already spent.

8. Any Instructor who does not participate in an activity for which she or he has received a grant, for reasons other than those mentioned above, or who uses the funds for purposes other than those for which they have been granted shall be ineligible to receive any further professional development grants for a period of three (3) years.

9. To apply an instructor or group must complete the Professional Development Application form and attach complete documentation that includes:

  • official published information from the organization or association that is hosting the activity, including a detailed description of the activity, dates, and costs;
  • a letter of intent that demonstrates how the activity relates to your instruction at Continuing Education;
  • an explicit breakdown of all expenses with supporting documentation.

10. All documentation must be submitted in four copies to the Professional Development Committee, c/o The Receptionist, Continuing Education. The Application Deadline for the period 1 June 2012 to 31 May 2013 is 15 June 2012.

The forms and guidelines are available on-line on the Cont Ed. Instructor Site. A copy of both the Guidelines for Allocating Professional Development Funds as well as the Application Form for both Individual and Collective requests is displayed in FB-120 (photocopy room). The forms and complete guidelines are available here professional_development_application_form.pdf in pdf format.
Please note – When an instructor participated in a Professional Development activity that takes them out of the country, they are required to register their itinerary on MyConcordia so the university has the person’s co-ordinates in the event of disaster etc.

The Application Deadline is June 15.