One Day a Week Rule Guidance

Regular and full-time specialized members of the faculty have the primary responsibility of devoting their time, thought, and energy to the service of the university (Article III.F. of the Faculty Code). However, as permitted in Section 2.7.5 of the Faculty Handbook  and the Outside Interests, Relationships, and Professional Activities Policy (Addendum A: Faculty), a full-time faculty member may spend the equivalent of up to one working day a week on average during the academic year on outside professional activities provided such commitments do not interfere with their primary university obligations (‘one day a week rule’ or ‘rule’).

The one day a week rule ensures that faculty engagement in outside professional activities1 does not interfere with primary university obligations while supporting the external work of a faculty member in a manner that strengthens their competence, enhances their reputation and that of the university, and serves the public interest. This document provides guidance to assist faculty and administrators in operationalizing the rule.


One working day is considered eight (8) hours. It is expected that the time spent on outside professional activities be distributed to ensure that faculty members meet their primary university obligations. Any faculty member interested in engaging regularly in more concentrated outside professional activities (e.g., sixteen (16) hours on outside professional activities one week and zero (0) hours the following week) should consult with their department chair and dean’s office.

In addition to an average of one working day a week for outside activities, full-time faculty may devote personal time in the evenings or on the weekends to such activities.

Faculty engaged in research should note and adhere to any outside activity stipulations under the terms of the grant or contract.  If the terms of the grant or contract are more restrictive than the rule, the terms of the grant or contract shall apply; if the terms of the grant or contract are less restrictive than the rule, the rule shall apply.

Summer for Full-Time Faculty with a Nine Month Appointment

Generally, there is no limit on outside professional activities over the summer months for full-time faculty on nine (9) month appointments. However, those faculty members who are engaged in funded research and charging effort over the summer months must prioritize those activities. At no point should the total allotment of time spent on outside professional activities and externally funded research exceed 100% effort.

Summer for Full-Time Faculty with Administrative Appointments or on a Twelve-Month Contract

Full-time faculty members with administrative appointments or on a twelve (12) month contract have continued university responsibilities over the summer. Consistent with the rule, such faculty members may engage in outside professional activities so long as the outside activities do not interfere with fulfillment of their university responsibilities. They remain subject to the eight hours per week limit on outside professional responsibilities, on average, during the summer months. These faculty members should coordinate with their supervisor to ensure that all primary university obligations are met.

Outside Activities for Part-Time Faculty

Although the rule formally applies to full-time faculty only, it is expected that all active faculty members will manage their non-university activities so as to ensure that all university obligations are met.


Pursuant to the Faculty Handbook and Faculty COI Policy, department chairs, or where applicable, heads of academic units, and deans are responsible for ensuring compliance with the rule. Full-time faculty members who wish to engage in outside professional activities that go beyond the rule may request approval to take leave for additional time (see, e.g., Article VI.A. of the Faculty Code) or reconsider the terms of their faculty appointment in consultation with their department and school/college.


1Faculty should defer to their appointment letter in determining what constitutes an outside professional activity versus their university responsibility and consult with their department chair, or head of academic unit, and dean, as needed.