CUPE members have a lot of different titles at AU, and for some time the union has been working to update and consolidate these so that our title is more representative of what we do.
Currently, our members fall under the titles of Tutor, Academic Expert, Marker, Clinical Instructor, and Lab Instructor. For those of you who wonder just what a “tutor” is, the term came from British universities, such as Oxford. The Oxford website defines a tutor as, "a member of academic staff who is an expert in their field". However, on this side of the Atlantic, tutor is not understood in the same way. Needless to say, "tutor" and some of our other titles do not adequately describe what our members do at AU or reflect the level of academic and professional expertise that our members bring to the AU community.
In order to clarify our role, the tutors at AU, and many Academic Experts, are considering redesignating themselves as “Academic Instructors,” to indicate that we usually have the same academic qualifications as the faculty at AU. Also, we often have, in addition, a large amount of related experience in the area of academic expertise. Some of us feel that the title of "Academic Instructor" for all of us is less confusing to our students in that it better describes our role at AU and how we interact with our students during their course.