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Middlesex College at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ont.GEOFF ROBINS

A tentative agreement has been reached to avert a strike by professors at the University of Western Ontario.

The school's faculty association says a deal was struck at about 3 a.m. Wednesday after a marathon 18-hour negotiating session.

No details of the agreement were announced and the association says the date for a ratification vote has not yet been determined.

Faculty association president James Compton had said compensation and performance evaluations were key issues in the talks.

The 1,400 unionized full and part-time faculty members at Western have been without a contract since June 30 and were poised to walk out at 7 a.m.

The university had warned that a walkout would have forced the cancellation of almost all classes, labs and tutorials for its 33,000 students.

Western will also continue talks on Thursday with a conciliator and the university's staff association, which represents 1,100 administrative and technical staff.

Those workers are in a legal strike position as of 12:01 a.m. Thursday but won't walk out while bargaining continues, said association president Deb Novakowski.