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14 August 2013
Institutional Review will be taking place in the University next year: the first visit will be on 19/20 February 2014 and the full review visit from 31 March – 4 April 2014. Here Professor Patricia Price, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Student Experience & Academic Standards) tells us about the preparations underway and why the Vice-Chancellor has stated that Institutional Review is as important to the University as the Research Excellence Framework (REF).
As part of my role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for Student Experience & Academic Standards I am responsible for ensuring that the University is well prepared for its Institutional Review. The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) reviews all Higher Education Institutes on behalf of the Government, to ensure that the quality and standards expected of them are being met. In Wales, there is an additional emphasis in the review of recognising enhancement.
A successful outcome for Cardiff is extremely important; indeed the Vice-Chancellor has emphasised that it is as important as REF in terms of its impact on our reputation as a University. However, Institutional Review is not just about assuring the public of the quality of our provision; it also provides an opportunity to confirm the enriching experience our students receive when studying at Cardiff University.
I am fortunate to be supported by the IR Steering Group, with membership covering academic Schools and College staff, colleagues in the Professional Services and the Students’ Union. As part of the Review the University has to produce a Self Evaluation Document, which accounts for how Cardiff University meets the UK expectations for Higher Education, and to provide supporting evidence.
We have just celebrated the achievements of our latest graduates and can now enjoy a little time for rest and relaxation. However, the work for IR has already started and will continue over the summer; the outcome of Institutional Review will affect us all and there is still plenty to do! Schools are already making a valuable contribution to our evidence gathering and the IR Team are meeting with members of the Professional Services Departments for input into the Self Evaluation Document, particularly focusing on any areas of good practice we should be citing.
The Students’ Union has also been busy as it is required to submit a Student Written Submission detailing how the University has responded to student feedback and the work being undertaken in partnership to further enhance the student experience.
Over the summer, we will be contacting many individual members of staff to ask for help in reviewing and refining the contents of the Self Evaluation Document. If you are interested in taking part in this process, or any other part of the work on IR, please let us know.
The QAA Review Team will also wish to interview key staff as part of the Review; it will confirm the details during the 1.5 day First Team Visit in February 2014. In the meantime, we will be setting up a number of briefings and rehearsals to assist in preparing staff for the main visit in March.
For further information about Institutional Review, the key timescales, and members of the IR Project Team visit the website at http://learning.cf.ac.uk/ongoing-initiatives/institutional-review/ We also have a Connections community, so you can follow our updates there https://connections.cf.ac.uk/communities/community/ir
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