Quality

The supervision, maintenance and development of all quality assurance procedures within the University are within the remit of the Academic Board on whose authority regulations and procedures are issued.  The Academic Board delegates the operational implementation of these processes to one of its standing committees, the Academic, Quality and Standards Committee (AQSC). 

All University staff should be familiar with these regulations and procedures because they are the primary means whereby the University ensures the maintenance of quality in its academic provision and appropriate standards of its academic awards.  The systems are based on quality control through internal and external peer review, continuous monitoring and student feedback.  

Although the overall accountability for setting appropriate standards and maintaining academic quality rests with Academic Board, the day-to-day responsibility for standards and quality lies with all staff, particularly those who develop and teach the programmes. Staff development activities that promote quality teaching and learning are also the responsibility of the AQSC.

Peer review operates in:

  • internal and external scrutiny of new provision as part of the validation process;
  • periodic review and revalidation panels;
  • internal audits commissioned by AQSC;
  • the external examiner system;
  • external review audit and inspection, eg by the QAA and Ofsted
  • external academic, professional and vocational assessment and accreditation.

Academic Board monitors the effectiveness of programmes through:

  • external examiners’ reports and the responses to them;
  • student feedback;
  • subject, programme and school meetings;
  • annual subject and programme reports, leading to Faculty summative reports to AQSC;
  • Annual Programmes reports;
  • the Annual University Report.

Student feedback includes:

  • The National Student Survey
  • The University Student Experience Questionnaire
  • The University First Impressions Survey
  • Module evaluations
  • Student membership of committees and panels

The roles of the University academic committees and management groups in relation to quality assurance (and other matters) can be found in the Committee Handbook.

From time to time the AQSC commissions internal audits of specific aspects of academic provision or of administrative or regulatory procedures, normally of relevance across the institution.  The audit is ‘in-depth’ insofar as documentary and other evidence is gathered and evaluated against an agreed framework such as the QAA's Quality Code, but ‘light-touch’ insofar as the process does not normally require those selected for audit to produce documentation other than that which should exist anyway.

AQSC produces an Audit Specification to underpin the audit activity, but inevitably the auditors will stray from that brief somewhat as they find and consider evidence in the course of the audit.

From time to time AQSC will select elements of the University provision to audit trail the annual monitoring and reporting processes to ensure that the reports considered by the University Committees represent the actuality of the student experience.

Quality Assurance Documentation

Documentation relating to Quality Assurance, formerly included in the Quality Assurance Handbook, is now presented as a series of separate documents under the direction of the Academic, Quality and Standards Committee. These Quality Assurance documents include:

  • Collaborative Provision Regulations and Procedures
  • Short Course Regulations
  • Programme Approval Regulations and Procedures
  • Programme Monitoring and Review (including Periodic Review and Annual Monitoring)
  • Guidance on Programme Handbooks
  • Student Feedback and Representation

Any queries with regard to Quality Assurance documentation should be addressed to the Quality Assurance Officer, Niki Cartwright, at ncartwright@marjon.ac.uk

Share