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Faculty of Divinity


Faculty of Divinity Staff Handbook

Revision 1.8.23

Health, Safety and Security


If you have an accident, please report this to the Administrative Officer by completing this form.

If the fire alarm sounds, please leave the building via the nearest exit and assemble directly opposite the main entrance outside the Faculty of English. 

The building is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm during Full Term and until 4:30 pm at other times. The Faculty is closed between Christmas and new year, over the Easter period and for the August bank holiday and following Tuesday. Staff can access the building out of hours. If you teach or organise an event when the Faculty is closed, it is your responsibility to make sure that your students/guests can and do leave the building.

The Faculty

The Faculty belongs to the School of Arts and Humanities, one of the six Schools into which the teaching parts of the University are divided. The other Faculties in the School of Arts and Humanities are Architecture & History of Art, Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, Classics, English, Medieval & Modern Languages, Music and Philosophy.

The governing body of the Faculty is the Faculty Board which has a number of sub-committees which report to it: the Undergraduate Teaching Committee, six subject committees, the Executive Committee, the Research Committee, and the Directors of Studies Meeting.

See also:

  • administrative staff (non-academic) and their responsibilities

Faculty Board Minutes (Unreserved Business) are posted on the Faculty Moodle site for UTOs only.

The Faculty Calendar gives the dates of all Committee meetings.

For information please consult the website and notice boards.

Human Resources Matters

See the Human Resources Division’s website.

Employing People

Any plan for employing a person in a new full-time role or for regrading an existing role must be discussed with the Chair of the Faculty and the Administrative Officer. If you wish to employ someone in a part-time or temporary role, for example as a research assistant or an hourly-rate teacher, please contact the Administrative Officer. No commitments may be made without formal authorisation, Persons employed at hourly rates will need to be treated as self-employed or have a worker's agreement or go via the Temporary Employment Service depending on the number of hours worked.

Leave and absence

Sickness and ill-health

See the University’s policy on absence due to sickness.

Sick leave should be reported to the Administrative Officer.

Sabbatical and research leave

Sabbatical leave is accrued at the rate of one term of leave for every six terms served, Please consult the Administrative Officer for advice on the procedure for leave.

Requests for sabbatical leave must be made by the Lent term of the academic year next but one before that in which you wish to take leave; such requests should be made on this form from the Administrative Officer. Sabbatical leave should be agreed by the relevant Subject Committee, who must confirm arrangements for covering teaching, and is subject to Faculty and General Board approval. See the Statutory provisions for sabbatical leave.

Please note that by statute (Statute D, Chapter 2, 5 (b)), leave entitlements that are more than six years old are lost.

If you wish to apply for paid academic research leave, for example through an application for research funding to an external funder, please discuss your plans with the Chair of the Faculty Board, whose task is to ensure that the teaching and administrative needs of the Faculty are met at all times.

Other types of leave

Information about other forms of leave can be found by contacting the Administrative Officer.

Probation and Promotion

University Lecturers are on an initial probation period of five years which can be waived in exceptional circumstances or reduced to three years if progress is satisfactory.

Every autumn applications are invited for the promotions. See Academic Career Pathways (Research and Teaching) | (

The Chair of the Faculty Board is always willing to discuss with University Lecturers the timing and procedures for an application for promotion. You are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunities for mentoring both in relation to career planning in general and specifically in preparation for applying for promotion.


Staff are appraised every second year after completing their probation.

Equality and diversity

The University is committed to equality of opportunity in its pursuit of academic excellence. It holds a Bronze Athena SWAN award (which covers the STEM subjects) and is extending its activities to include the Arts and Humanities. There is a number of networks and activities related to equality.

(See also below on Dignity at Work).

Research Funding Support

The Faculty has Trust Funds to which members of the Faculty may apply for support for attending Conferences and other research activity.

Trust Funds are also used to fund academic posts, studentships, conferences and other activities.

The Faculty also offers limited funds to University Lecturers who wish to employ a graduate student for a small research task, such as help with an index or bibliography. Please ask the Administrative Officer.

If you wish to make an application for a research grant funded by the University or by an external funder, please discuss this at least one month before the deadline with the Chair of the Research Committee and Administrative Officer.

Our own and our sister School host two research facilitators who can help identify potential funders and schemes for a research grant proposal. Their research web-site should be among your ‘favourites’.

For the Centre of Research in Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities which has its own programmes and resource opportunities.

Financial Procedures

If you wish to purchase any goods or services, please contact the Senior Accounts Clerk or the Administrative Officer before making any commitments or purchases. The Accounts Clerk will need to raise a purchase order. For items of expenditure over £1000, three quotations will be needed.

Forms for Seminar Organisers to provide to speakers to claim expenses are available from the Office.


If you need to cater for an event, e.g. a lunch or dinner, please contact the Administrative Officer for advice. The Faculty is only allowed to use approved suppliers so as to ensure the best practice with regard to health and safety. For lunches and receptions, food should be ordered via one of the accredited suppliers such as the University Centre (details from the Faculty Office). Drinks are ordered via the office.

Statutes and Ordinances

The ultimate University authority is called "Statutes and Ordinances". This is published every year with updates and there is a copy in the Faculty Office. It is updated with changes throughout the year and the latest version is accessible online.

For the last word on University regulations this is the place to go, and it is ESSENTIAL that what we do or put on the website does not conflict with what is laid down in Statutes and Ordinances. Any contravention causes serious problems.

Grievance and Dignity at Work

Grievance procedures exist for staff to seek redress of workplace concerns as informally, fairly, and speedily as possible. Where after investigation a grievance is found to be vexatious or malicious, and without any reasonable foundation, disciplinary action may follow. See

The University of Cambridge is committed to protecting the dignity of staff, students, visitors to the University, and all members of the University community in their work and their interactions with others. The University expects all members of the University community to treat each other with respect, courtesy and consideration at all times. All members of the University community have the right to expect professional behaviour from others, and a corresponding responsibility to behave professionally towards others.

See the University’s Dignity at Work policy statement.


The Senior Common Room or Selwyn Room is available for staff on the ground floor. Coffee is often served in the Faculty lobby at 10:50 in full term.

Contact staff in the Faculty Office for advice on postage, telephone, fax and photocopying.

The IT Team will provide appropriate computer equipment for staff.



Current students and supervisors can access the Faculty’s Moodle page by clicking on the image below.