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ACADEMIC INFRASTRUCTURE • Framework for Higher Education Qualifications • Subject Benchmark Statements • Programme Specifications • Code of Practice (for the assurance of academic quality and standards in higher education) • Personal Development Planning
RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN COMPONENTS OF THE ACADEMIC INFRASTRUCTURE Code of Practice Setting Standards Framework for HE qualifications (national agreement) Programme Specification (institutional staff) Subject benchmark statement (subject community)
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS • http: //www. qaa. ac. uk/academicinfrastructure/FHEQ • One element of the QAA Academic Infrastructure • The framework describes outcomes of the five levels of HE qualifications: Certificate, Intermediate, Honours, Masters, Doctoral. It consists of descriptors of expected achievement, not credits accumulated.
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS FHEQ levels HE levels EWNI* levels Qualification Doctoral D 8 Doctorate Masters M 7 Masters degree, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma Honours 3 6 Bachelors degree with Honours, Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma Intermediate 2 5 Foundation degree, Ordinary Bachelors degree, Diploma of Higher Education Certificate 1 4 Certificate of Higher Education * England, Wales and Northern Ireland levels system
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS Qualification descriptors are in two parts: • a statement of generic outcomes which students who achieve the award should be able to demonstrate. • a statement of the wider abilities that the typical student could be expected to have developed.
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS For example, the Certificate level descriptor states: • Certificates of Higher Education are awarded to students who have demonstrated: • i knowledge of the underlying concepts and principles associated with their area(s) of study, and an ability to evaluate and interpret these within the context of that area of study; • ii an ability to present, evaluate, and interpret qualitative and quantitative data, to develop lines of argument and make sound judgements in accordance with basic theories and concepts of their subject(s) of study.
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS Typically, holders of the qualification will be able to: • a evaluate the appropriateness of different approaches to solving problems related to their area(s) of study and/or work; • b communicate the results of their study/work accurately and reliably, and with structured and coherent arguments; c undertake further training and develop new skills within a structured and managed environment;
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS and will have: • d qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of some personal responsibility.
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS The FHEQ at Portsmouth • Simple tool for institutional management of academic standards – it is a framework not a regulatory tool • Informs all course approvals and reviews of named awards at Portsmouth • Integral part of our QA procedures: - Programme teams and approval/review panels refer to the FHEQ so that they can be satisfied that, for any programme, the curriculum and assessments provide all students with the opportunity to achieve, and to demonstrate achievement of, the outcomes.
FRAMEWORK FOR HIGHER EDUCATION QUALIFICATIONS Future QAA plans: • Include more guidance • Be more explicit about how the FHEQ links with programme specifications and subject benchmark statements • Alignment of FHEQ qualification level descriptors with European descriptors
SUBJECT BENCHMARK STATEMENTS • are statements of what the relevant academic communities consider to be valid subject frameworks within which an honours degree in a discipline should be offered; • are not definitive regulatory criteria for individual programmes or awards; • do, however, provide authoritative reference points, which students and other interested parties will expect both to be taken into account when programmes are designed and reviewed and to be reflected, as appropriate, in programme specifications.
PROGRAMME SPECIFICATIONS • QAA: “A programme specification is a concise description of the intended outcomes of learning from a higher education programme” • University of Portsmouth: A programme specification provides essential information on the curriculum and teaching & learning strategies for a course. The use and consideration of many external reference points are also communicated through them, for example, employability strategies were recently added.
CODE OF PRACTICE • Identifies a comprehensive series of principles (precepts) covering matters related to academic quality and standards in higher education management • an authoritative reference point for institutions as they assure the quality and standards of their awards
CODE OF PRACTICE 10 Sections: • • • Postgraduate research programmes Collaborative provision and flexible and distributed learning Students with disabilities External Examining Academic appeals and student complaints Assessment of students Programme design, approval, monitoring and review Career education, information and guidance Placement learning Admissions to higher education
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING Part of the QAA requirement for a Progress File consisting of • a structured and supported process to enable students to reflect on their learning, and plan for personal, educational and career development (PDP) • a transcript, providing a record of learning and achievement • the University believes that an effective PDP process supports students from diverse backgrounds through an individual and reflective approach.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING Helps students take responsibility for their own learning by • helping them reflect on their progress, identify ways of improving their performance and plan how they can achieve their goals • through a framework of activities that will help students and tutors to work together to identify areas for development.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING At Portsmouth there are 3 main strands of PDP: • Developing skills to support learning, personal development and employability • Reflecting on current skills, areas for development, planning how to develop any necessary skills and assessing achievement • Recording mechanisms (paper-based or online) to help develop a portfolio of evidence
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING PDP activities and documents are in place for all levels, including those for postgraduate students. Level 1: Individual Learning Profile [ILP], Action Plan and Review All other levels: Action Plan and Review
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING Looking in more detail at Level 1: (handout) • Induction week: ILP questionnaire completed by students • Mid-October: In personal tutorial session ILP used to identify any actions, Action Plan completed and retained by student • Mid-February: In personal tutorial session Semester 2 Review Form completed and retained by student.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANNING The QAA minimum outcomes are that • students will have participated in PDP in a range of learning contexts at each stage or level of their programme; • demonstrated that they can access and use the aids and tools provided by the institution to help them reflect upon their own learning and achievements and to plan for their own personal, educational and career development; • with support, created their own learning records containing information on the qualities and skills they can evidence which can be drawn upon when applying for a job or further study.
ACADEMIC INFRASTRUCTURE AND ITS RELATIONSHIP TO AUDIT/REVIEW • The Academic Infrastructure is key: • In Course Approval • In External and Internal Audit and Review