Conferral of Academic Titles

Conferral of Academic Titles

In 2004 the University limited the use of honorary academic titles to either "Conjoint" or "Visitor". Following a review, the University has now revised its policy and procedure for the conferral of academic titles at UNSW effective from 2 November 2010.

A revised Policy on Conferring Academic Titles and Procedure for Conferring Academic Titles are available on the Governance Support Unit website:

Conferring Academic Titles Policy


Conferring Academic Titles Procedure

Specific points to note include:

  • The re-introduction of the title "adjunct" and the introduction of a separate "Honorary academic" title for retired academic staff from UNSW (or another university)
  • A table that sets out the background of the recipient of each of the conferred titles and the delegated authority for approval of each title

Applications to confer a title on existing Visiting or Conjoint appointment holders will normally be restricted to the end of the current appointment.

For further information, please contact your Human Resources Consultant.

Related Documents:
HR20 - Request to Confer an Academic Title Form - (RTF) interactive or (PDF) - interactive

Payment of travel and living expenses for visiting academics

Domestic and international visitors who are invited to observe and participate in research at UNSW, may have a financial contribution made towards the travel and living expenses associated with their visit to UNSW. This website provides information about the options for making contributions towards these expenses, and the relevant rules and regulations that need to be adhered to in doing so.

General conditions
  • There is no entitlement to a contribution towards travel and living expenses.
  • Any and all contributions made towards travel and living expenses must be tax compliant and if a living allowance is paid it must be paid in accordance with the limits set out by the Australian Tax Office (ATO).
  • Contributions will only be paid if approved by the Head of School/Centre Director (or other authorised delegate).
  • If an international visitor they must be a non-resident of Australia and hold an appropriate visa.
  • If an Australian resident, they must be visiting from another location within Australia, and not already living at the host location.

What are the options for making a contribution towards travel and living expenses?
From 1 January 2015, there are no facilities to make cash or cheque payments to visiting academics. All contributions to travel and living expenses must be made via the following methods:
  • Payment directly to suppliers on behalf of the visiting academic via tax invoice, credit card, the UNSW Travel Portal or other approved payment method.
  • Reimbursement to the visiting academic of actual costs incurred via the PR1 Form, with tax invoices and receipts to substantiate the expenses.
  • A per diem/travel allowance can be paid to the visiting academic as a contribution to cover their living expenses via the PR1 Form.
  • A combination of the above, as long as the allowance does not cover costs paid directly or reimbursed (e.g. if accommodation is booked and paid for directly, an allowance could be paid for meals and incidentals, but not for accommodation).
For information about the account codes which should be used, please visit the Finance Website.
What are the per diem/travel allowance limits?

The ATO daily rates, for the 2015 / 2016 (01/07/2015 – 30/06/2016) taxation year are shown in the table below.
Visits of up to 90 days:

These visitors are treated as travellers and thus are able to receive a living allowance/per diem rate up to the ATO reasonable travel allowance rate as shown in the table below.
For visits longer than 90 days:

Payments made to visitors whose visit to Australia is longer than 90 days will be subject to FBT unless they are eligible for an exemption. Exemptions are dependent on the visiting academic’s home country of residence, the duration of the visit and whether Australia has a Double Tax Agreements (DTA) with their home country that allows an exemption to be made subject to time or monetary limits that may be imposed. Provided the visit is within any time and/or monetary limits imposed, an allowance based on the rates as shown in the table below can be made, or actual expenses paid or reimbursed. For more information about the time and monetary limits relating to specific countries, and the exemptions, please visit the Finance Website.
Food and drink
B'fast 25.90/ 23.20
Lunch 29.15/ 26.50
Dinner 49.65/ 45.70

Total 104.70/ 95.40
Other locations (for Faculty of Medicine RCS)
Coffs Harbour
Port Macquarie
Wagga Wagga
Can I pay more than the ATO travel allowance rates?

Yes, it is possible, however when an amount is paid to visiting academics which exceeds the maximum reasonable allowance amounts set out by the ATO, then the entire payment will be subject to FBT (not just the excess).

If the amount is paid as an actual expense and not an allowance (i.e. the amount is either paid directly to a supplier, or reimbursed on receipt), then it is not limited to the daily per diem/travel allowance rates as shown in the table above. A higher amount can be paid provided it can be substantiated with receipts, tax invoices or similar evidence of the expense incurred.
Can I pay less than the ATO travel allowance rates?

Yes, as long as the amount paid is still reasonable.

If paying at a lower rate it should be structured accordingly. Some available options are:
  • pay an allowance for only the accommodation, meals, or incidentals instead of all three.
  • pay an allowance for accommodation at a lower rate that can be supported, e.g. advertised rate for hotel
  • pay only for the first set number of days of the visit, and not the full duration of the visit
Can I pay the visiting academic for a guest lecture or other work?

Commonly known as an ‘honorarium’ or ‘fee for service’, paying a visiting academic to undertake work is only possible if the conditions of the visa held by the person allow it. Please contact your HR Team for advice (

Even if the visa conditions of the visitor allow such a payment to be made, then the University may be required to withhold PAYG tax from the payment, and therefore it would need to be paid through the payroll system into an Australian bank account. The ability of the visitor to avoid taxation in Australia would require an assessment of whether an exemption can be applied. Please contact the UNSW Tax Advisory and Compliance Team ( for more information or advice.
How can I determine if there are any tax implications for a Visiting Academic payment?

The Finance website has a Tax Tool to assist with assessing the tax implications for Visiting Academic payments. The tool can be used to assist in planning payments to Visiting Academics to ensure they are tax compliant for the University.
The tool does not provide personal tax advice to the visitor on their tax obligations as a result of the payment.
To access the tool, click on the link to ‘Tax Tools’ on the Finance website:
Who can I contact for more information about paying living expenses for visiting academics?

Please contact the UNSW Tax Advisory & Compliance Team: