CHAIRING VALIDATION PANELS Rhona Sharpe, Head of OCSLD Liz Turner, Head of APQO 11th April 2013
Purpose of session To reflect on the role of the validation panel chair before, during and after the approval event; To focus on the conduct of validation events to ensure they meet the University’s requirements, and enable the University to demonstrate that it meets sector expectations in respect of programme development; To provide an opportunity for colleagues to exchange good practice and resolve any challenges they may have encountered.
CONTENT Discussion – good and bad practice in panel chairing. Overview of the Chair’s role and responsibilities Promoting good programme design What are you committing to? The role of the chair: before, during and after the approval event. Questions and comments.
discussion • Take a couple of minutes to reflect individually on what characterises a really good validation panel chair; and on what you consider to be poor practice in a panel chair. • Share ideas with the colleague/s next to you, and come up with a consensus on what an ‘ideal’ panel chair does and the skills they possess; and what panel chairs should avoid doing. • Feedback/whole group discussion.
Appointing chairs • The validation panel has a general responsibility to ensure that programme approval decisions are informed by full consideration of academic – and professional - standards and of the appropriateness of the learning opportunities which will be offered to students (evidence gathering; making confidence judgement). • Criteria for panel chairs: • Seniority within University • Experience - of internal and external QA; of chairing meetings; of managing collaborative provision • Independence from proposing team
Reference points Panel chairs will need to be familiar with a variety of internal and external reference points, including: • Subject Benchmark statements (QAA) • UK Quality Code (QAA) • Quality & Standards Handbook • University Regulations • Construction of learning outcomes • Features of an aligned curriculum • The Brookes Assessment compact • The Brookes (post)graduate attributes
Examples Quotesfrom recent reports provided by experienced panel chairs: “Ensure the constructive alignment of the assessment tasks and the module learning outcomes.”(event 25 Feb 2013) “The panel noted that there were 24 programme learning outcomes in all and suggested that this was a high number of outcomes.”(6 Feb 2013) “Ensure that the learning outcomes use appropriate language for the level.”(20 Feb 2013) “Reinstate the missing Research Literacy programme learning outcome and demonstrate how it is met in the programme”(12 March 2013)
Learning outcomes Learning outcomes should be constructed so that they: • Are appropriate to the level of the module or programme • Articulate our expectations of higher order learning • Articulate the Brookes (post)graduate attributes • Contextualise the Brookes (post)graduate attributes for the discipline
graduate attributes • Explicit • Well articulated • Progressive • Contextualised
BEFORE… • Familiarising themselves with the requirements of the process, including the criteria for approval; • Scrutinising documents submitted by the proposing team, including any contextual information provided; • If possible, meeting with QAO, panel secretary and programme leader in advance of event to ensure panel is properly constituted, and agree on timescale for submission of documentation (ensure it will be ready in time) and, where necessary, any additional requirements.
DURING…. • Collecting evidence – documents and discussions; • Creating a positive and collegial atmosphere in which to consider the proposal; • Coordinating agenda setting, ensuring views of all panel members are taken into account in identifying areas for questioning, ensuring programme approval criteria and external reference points are covered; • Managing discussions (keeping notes), and affording all panel members, especially externals (where new curriculum is being considered), the opportunity to engage in discussion with the proposing team.
DRAWING CONCLUSIONS… • Approve, Refer or Reject? • Agreeing conditions and recommendations (if conditional approval given) on basis of evidence gathered from documentation and discussions; • Giving feedback to the proposing team.
AFTER… • Working with panel secretary/QAO to ensure report provides a clear and accurate account of the discussions and conclusions (ref. to own notes); provide feedback on draft report before it is circulated to panel for confirmation. • Considering revised documentation against the report to confirm that any conditions have been fulfilled, taking advice from link QAO. • Providing feedback on the experience (evaluation form).
Questions & comments • Is there any other guidance you would find useful? • Any other questions or comments? • Any examples of difficult situations you have encountered (and solved)? • Is there anything else that needs to be taken into account when collaborative arrangements are being considered?