Rhona Sharpe, Head of OCSLDLiz Turner, Head of APQO11th April 2013CHAIRING VALIDATION PANELS
Purpose of sessionTo 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 Universitys 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 Chairs role and responsibilitiesPromoting good programme designWhat are you committing to? The role of the chair: before, during and after the approval event.Questions and comments.
discussionTake 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 chairsThe 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 provisionIndependence from proposing team
Reference pointsPanel 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 HandbookUniversity RegulationsConstruction of learning outcomes Features of an aligned curriculumThe Brookes Assessment compactThe Brookes (post)graduate attributes
ExamplesQuotes from 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 outcomesLearning outcomes should be constructed so that they:Are appropriate to the level of the module or programmeArticulate our expectations of higher order learningArticulate the Brookes (post)graduate attributesContextualise the Brookes (post)graduate attributes for the discipline
graduate attributes Explicit Well articulated Progressive Contextualised
Support for PDTs
BEFOREFamiliarising 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 CONCLUSIONSApprove, 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.
AFTERWorking 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 & commentsIs 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?
****And know where to find additional guidance on these, which they might point PDTs to.*
These are the things that experienced panel chairs are looking out for
Ensure the constructive alignment of the assessment tasks and the module learning outcomes. (Business and Management, 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. (Human Resource Management, 6 Feb 2013)Ensure that the learning outcomes use appropriate language for the level. (Animal management and conservation, 20 Feb 2013)Reinstate the missing Research Literacy programme learning outcome, demonstrate how it is met in the programme (Business Administration, 12 March 20130
*Learning outcomes have been a particular problem. The current evaluation of the GAs started with reading all the programme specification documents and noted a great deal of inconsistency in the articulation of learning outcomes and this is in documentation which has already been through validation/periodic review.
What should you be looking for?What additional support materials can you refer PDTs to?*Not one hit it works step by step
Progression over time at Brookes
Address all five GAs are not discrete; can double count.
Range of experiences all shaped by the disciplinary context
*Ocsld screencasts on our youtube channel on e.g. Finding resources to help improve assessment practicesGA: examples from prog specs and case studies from BrookesTechnicalities of writing learning outcomes
*Analytical skills needed hence requirement for experience of such events and desirability of QAA experience. *People management skills hence need for experience of chairing meetings.*Report is record of the event to provide evidence that QA process has been followed (to AESC and sector), that academic standards have been set at the appropriate level, and high quality learning opportunities secured for students point of reference for panel, team, AESC/FAESC, QAA, PSRBs, etc. Report is shared responsibility of whole panel.