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About sabattical leave

Started by abya121, August 10, 2023, 06:23:19 AM

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Hi There,
It is time for me to take a sabbatical leave, since this is the first time i am going to do that, i have some questions.

I heard some one take this opportunity to stay in another university (even internationally) for a few months. I plan to do that as well. But who will pay this trip? if i pay myself and stay in another place for a few months, that is not a small expense.

Any other ideas on how to utilize this period?

Also can i still perform research (meeting PHD students, writing proposal and papers)  in my lab during this period?




Every institution will have its own policies and rules, which differ vastly. Check the faculty handbook and academic affairs office on your institutions specifics.


Yes, second that you will have to read your handbook and be sure to meet every requirement for applying for sabbatical (they aren't typically "automatic," you probably have to petition a Dean or committee by some date early in the school year before the sabbatical).

I can say that at my school, a private SLAC, you can definitely work at another university and work abroad , but you can't be more than half time teaching unless its part of a prestigious fellowship (such as Fulbright).  Also, if you are offered a job there and stay, then you have to pay back the costs of your sabbatical (honestly though, no one ever sues for that money). If you are asking whether you'd be able to run or use your lab at the current place, the answer is a definitely maybe, but a probable yes. Often schools will need to use your office for your teaching replacement person, if there is one. But that person won't be able to clear out your own lab and do whatever they want, and likely neither would anybody else. So, though you can't presume you'd have full use of your lab, you'd probably at least be allowed shared use with others and maybe even full use if nobody else uses that equipment anyway.


You are certainly going to have to continue working with your PhD students and being the PI of your lab during sabbatical, even if from afar -- that's one of the challenges of being in a lab field-- you can't just up and abandon your lab, the way someone in the humanities (or I guess in the sciences at a SLAC where research is a lesser part of the job with no grad students) could just go off and have no contact during sabbatical.

As for cost, maybe some fancy places have funds for sabbatical travel, but places I'm familiar with you aren't going to get more than your regular salary, unless you have a fellowship or grant to pay for the travel. Some people rent out their local house while they are away (there's a sabbatical rentals website designed for this)
"Never get separated from your lunch. Never get separated from your friends. Never climb up anything you can't climb down."
–Best Colorado Peak Hikes


Some national and international facilities like Max Planck Inst have visitor programs. I don't know if they pay you, but they'd probably have some support money. Also, some abroad schools will have restrictions on who can teach their students (usually related to language).