Quality Policy

Document Currently Under Review

Current Status: Under Review /With Editor 30 July 2015

Quality Policy

Policy Code: CG1664

Purpose

The Quality Policy confirms the University’s commitment to quality and describes the University's approach to quality assurance and continuous improvement.

The Quality Policy:

  • Describes the Quality Framework in place at the University;
  • Identifies the desired outcomes of the Quality Framework;
  • Identifies and describes each person’s responsibility for ensuring Quality;
  • Supports the University’s Strategic Plans and Objectives;
  • Ensures the University achieves and maintains a low risk status from the perspective of regulatory bodies due to planned monitoring, maintenance and improvement of the University’s Quality Framework; and
  • Promotes the application of the Universities Policies, Procedures, Guidelines, Manuals and Forms.

Scope

The Quality Policy applies to and is inclusive of the entire University community. The University Community includes students, staff, partners or agents of the University located locally, interstate and overseas. The Quality Policy applies to all the University activities which directly or indirectly support or impact on it's tertiary education services.

Legislative Context

  • Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
  • Educational Services for Overseas Students (ESOS)
  • Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)
  • Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA)
  • Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) Requirements

Definitions

Benchmarking The process of measuring and monitoring outcomes against predetermined (usually best practice) standards.
Continuous Improvement The ongoing process of change for the purpose of improvement to practices and processes.
Continuous Improvement Cycle The cyclic process of Plan, Do, Review and Improve.
Internal Quality Audit The systematic, independent and documented process for obtaining audit evidence and evaluating it objectively to determine the extent to which the audit criterion is fulfilled.
Quality The totality of features and characteristics of a product or service that demonstrates its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs.
Quality Assurance The program of activities to ensure products and services are of the desired quality.
Quality Control The program of inspection activities to ensure products and services are of the desired quality prior to delivery or release.
Quality Objectives Desired outcomes of the implementation and application of the University's Quality Framework.
Quality Reviews Quality Reviews are activities undertaken to measure the quality of products or services that have already been made or delivered. Also known as Quality Audits.
Quality Framework The system in which activities used to carry out Quality Control, Quality Assurance and Continuous Improvement are completed at the University.
Quality Key Performance Indicators Set targets of the Quality Objectives which are measured, monitored, reported, analysed and actioned via the University Governance and Management Committees.
Self Review and/Evaluation Internally based process to facilitate the evaluation, reflection and review of process and practices. This includes but is not limited to benchmarking, audits and program or course review.
University Governance and Management Committees

Relevant committees that support the academic, operational and quality governance of the University's Vocational Education and Training and Higher Education programs.

These include, but not limited to, the following committees or their replacements: Academic Board, Curriculum Committee, Learning and Teaching Committee and VET Compliance Management Group.

Policy Statement

Quality Statement

Federation University Australia will provide a quality tertiary education experience that inspires it's students to succeed, serves it's regions and communities and is international in its outlook and impact.

The University's commitment to the delivery of this quality tertiary education experience is demonstrated through the use of an organisational Quality Framework. Performance of the Quality Framework is measured and monitored through the Quality Objectives.

At the University, Quality is achieved when:

  • The Quality Objectives are met;
  • Process and practices are consistent in their delivery and are subject to continuous improvement practices;
  • Feedback from students, staff and stakeholders tells the University what it is doing well in addition to advising the University where it can improve.

Quality Principles

The Quality Framework at the University is based upon the following principles:

  • Quality Commitment
  • Quality Responsibility
  • Quality Staff and Resources
  • Quality Data and Information
  • Quality Practices
  • Quality Improvement

These principles are described as follows:

1. Quality Commitment - The University actively endorses and demonstrates support for the Quality Policy.

2. Quality Responsibility - Quality is accepted as the responsibility of all staff.

3. Quality Staff and Resources - Staff are trained, supported and resourced appropriately in order to deliver services and products consistent with University requirements.

4. Quality Data and Information - Processes are in place to ensure the consistent collection and analysis of data and information.

5. Quality Practices - Consistent and effective practices will be identified and communicated to the University Community through Policy, Procedures, Guidelines and Forms.

6. Quality Improvement - Critical, honest and timely self review and evaluation linked with reflection. Planned internal and external review promotes the constant evolution of practices and processes to ensure their ongoing suitability and adequacy.

Quality Framework

The Quality Framework at the University has two objectives:

  1. Ensuring the University achieves the desired level of quality in its activities as determined by its own standards and criteria across its operations; and
  2. Ensuring the University maintains compliance with regulatory requirements to ensure continuing certification as a Self Accrediting Institution and as a Registered Training Organisation.

The Quality Framework at the University consists of the following elements :

  1. Quality Control Processes which ensure products and/or services are of suitable standard prior to use;
  2. Quality Assurance Processes which ensure University activities are being completed or delivered in a consistent and correct manner;
  3. Continuous Improvement Processes to ensure University activities are constantly being checked to ensure the ongoing suitable and effectiveness and to identify areas of improvement;
  4. University Policies, Procedures, Guidelines, Manuals and Forms which both govern and guide the activities of staff;
  5. The Quality Objectives.

Federation University Australia has adopted the Continuous Improvement Cycle of Plan, Do, Review and Improve to drive the process for self review, reflection and improvement.

Quality Objectives

Quality and the performance of the Quality Framework at the University is measured, monitored and reported through the reporting and analysis of the Quality Objectives.

The Quality Objectives are desired outcomes which have been identified as important to the University in the context of delivering a quality tertiary education experience. Each Quality Objective has a Key Performance Indicator/s which the University has defined as a minimum acceptable standard of achievement.

The Quality Objectives and their corresponding Key Performance Indicators are identified and described in the Quality Framework. The Quality Objectives are established and monitored by the University Governance and Management Committees.

Supporting Documents

Responsibility

The University’s commitment to Quality is demonstrated and affirmed through the use of University Policies and Procedures and the activities of staff. Quality is everyone's responsibility. The intent and application of the Quality Policy is embedded in the work of all staff of the University.

All managers have the responsibility to check and ensure the requirements of the Quality Framework are being met within their area of responsibility. All staff members have the responsibility to ensure the principles on the Quality Policy are applied in their daily tasks.  

Students and other stakeholders have the responsibility to ensure they provide useful and timely feedback to the University regarding its processes and practices.

At an organisational level, responsibility for Quality is described as follows:

  • University Governance and Management Committees - Relevant committees that support the academic, operatrional and quality governance of the University's Vocational Education and Training and Higher Education programs. These include, but are not limited to, the following committees or their replacements: Academic Board, Curriculum Committee, Learning and Teaching Committee and VET Compliance Management Group.
  • Senior Management/Executive/Council - Review, support, endorse and ensure accountability within the Quality Framework.
  • Quality Services - Manage and Administer the Quality Framework.
  • All Staff - Use and apply University Policies and Procedures , act with the purpose of continuous improvement.

Promulgation

The Quality Policy will be communicated throughout the University via:

  1. An Announcement through FedNews on the University website;
  2. Inclusion on the University's online Policy Library;
  3. Inclusion on the Agenda of School Boards, meetings of Deans and other appropriate forums as required;
  4. Inclusion in the University Induction process; and
  5. Inclusion on the Quality Services Website.

Implementation

The Quality Policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  1. Monitoring and Review by the University Governance and Management Committees;
  2. Application of the Quality Framework through School Boards, Administrative Portfolios and Planning processes; and
  3. Specific Communication and Training Programs.