Introduction

This handbook provides a short guide to the procedures which the University’s Teaching and Learning Committee, University Research Committee, Graduate Board and Senate have adopted for the validation and annual evaluation of courses, programmes of study and research awards, including those validated by external bodies, and for the review of teaching, research and academic support services. The procedures have been developed and align with the UK Quality Code for Higher Education (the Quality Code), as published by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA), to ensure that academic standards are set at a level which meets the UK threshold standard for the qualification concerned. It is aimed at academic and administrative staff and those at Collaborating Institutions. A separate document has been produced by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor covering the financial arrangement for collaborative provision, copies of which can be obtained from the Registry Officer (Quality Assurance).

 

School Reviews

The evaluation of the strategic direction and performance of Schools within the University and the audit of the operation of their quality assurance and enhancement arrangements along with an examination of its assessment, teaching and learning and research strategies is undertaken through mechanisms including Quality Appraisals, Subject Review, PSRB Reviews, OfS and UNIAC audits and most regularly through the mechanism of the Annual Planning Round. Externality to the process is provided through the periodic audits of OfS and PSRBs to which all Schools are exposed.

 

Service Reviews

The evaluation of the strategic direction and performance of the Services within the University and the audit of the operation of its quality assurance and enhancement arrangements is undertaken through mechanisms including Quality Appraisals, UNIAC audits and most regularly through the mechanism of the Annual Planning Round. 

 

Emergency Procedures

There may be times, because of exceptional circumstances beyond our reasonable control, when the University is unable to apply the approved Quality Assurance Procedures. In these circumstances, emergency procedures may be approved by the University Teaching & Learning Committee for a duration as determined by the Vice Chancellor (or nominee).

Variations to the procedures may involve alteration of processes or the use of measures designed to support virtual or on-line processes in instances where it may not be possible to hold face-to-face events. Once approved, any emergency procedures will be circulated to stakeholders as appropriate and will be made available on the Registry website.

 

Further Information

Users of the handbook who require further information on any point should consult the Assistant Registrar (Quality Assurance) or staff in the Registry in the first instance. Further information is also available from the Registry website.

Throughout this handbook the Pro Vice-Chancellor with responsibility for curriculum delivery, and quality assurance and enhancement is referred to as the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Teaching and Learning). The Pro Vice-Chancellor with responsibility for Research Awards is referred to as the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise).

The Changes included in the August 2021 edition can be found below.

 

Changes for the August 2021 edition include:

This is the list of changes made to the Quality Assurance regulations for 2020/21
This information is presented in rows section by section.
SectionChanges
Section B
  • Updates and clarification of documentation required for validation events
  • Addition of guidance on the title of a course of study ((previously contained within the “Regulations for Taught Awards”).
Section C
  • Addition of ‘Joint Honours’ within Section
  • Addition of Naming Conventions for courses with more than one subject title (previously contained within the “Regulations for Taught Awards”).
  • Renumbering of Sections
Section G
  • Inclusion of CES employability considerations as part of the subject review process
  • Additional Clarification of the focus on PGR Activities
Section H Clarification that Thematic reviews will normally take place each year.
Section I

Addition of the definition of Cotutelle (Single Award)

Section J 

Updates to include PGR provision within the processes for Joint Awards

Section M

Clarification of the requirement for taught External Examiners to have a PhD to be appointed

Section N

Clarification of the appointment criteria for examiners for research degrees

Section P ***New Section*** on the PGR Validation Processes
Section Q *** New Section*** on the PGR Distance Learning Processes
Section R *** New Section*** on PGR Partnership Activities
Appendix E
  • Inclusion of CES employability considerations as part of the Subject Review compliance exercise
  • Additional Clarification of the inclusion of PGR activity within the Subject Review Compliance Exercise
Appendix F

Addition of requirement for Deans to provide confirmation of administrative resources for Degree Apprenticeships and Taught Courses

Appendix G

PGR Distance Learning Proforma