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Policy Governance

Policy Governance Policy

Policy Code: CG1977


Federation University Australia is governed by its Council which is established by the Federation University Australia Act 2010. The Council oversees the statutes, regulations and standing resolutions which govern other aspects of the University’s operations and through its policies and procedures, provide internal explanation of the regulatory requirements.

This policy provides an operational framework for developing, approving, implementing, reviewing and maintaining Federation University Australia’s policies and procedures in a clear and consistent format. Adherence to the framework through its associated procedure, will ensure that all University policies and procedures are necessary, relevant, useful and current.


This policy applies to all Federation University Australia officers and staff, including sessional staff, researchers and Council members. It also applies to individuals who undertake work on behalf of the University, but are not employed by the University such as partner providers (on-shore and off-shore), commercial delivery, VETiS (including auspicing) and volunteers.

Legislative Context

  • Federation University Act 2010
  • University Statutes and Regulations


Term Definition
Act Federation University Australia Act 2010 provides the legislative framework within which the University is required to operate
Approval Authority Person/s or body (eg Council, Academic Board), responsible for final approval of the content of a new policy or procedure, a major or minor amendment to an existing policy or procedure or the rescission of an existing policy or procedure
Document As a generic term can mean policy, procedure, form or other associated document
Feedback Form Suggested document for capturing, collating and actioning University-wide feedback
Governance The processes by which the University is controlled and held to account. It encompasses authority, accountability, stewardship, leadership, direction and control exercised in the organisation (Standards Australia AS 8000-2003/AMDT 1-2004)
Hierarchy of precedence

Federation University Australia governs its operations through the following hierarchy of instruments:

  1. Federation University Australia Act 2010
  2. Statutes
  3. Regulations
  4. Standing Resolutions of Council 
  5. University policies, procedures
  6. Guidelines, instruction manuals and checklists
  7. Local and supporting documents eg handbooks

Where two documents in the hierarchy conflict, the higher document takes precedence

Key stakeholders Person/s whose roles or responsibilities are directly affected by a policy and includes Approval Authorities and relevant process sponsors
Major amendment Any amendment that is not a minor amendment and is before the scheduled review.
Minor amendment

A minor amendment includes:

  • Changing nomenclature to reflect changes in University terminology and/or responsibilities.
  • Correcting grammar, typos and hyperlinks.
  • Adding detail for clarification that does not change the business process and/or intent of the policy or procedure.
  • Aligning content with legislative or regulatory requirements where the business process is specified thus making stakeholder consultation unnecessary.
  • Aligning content with legislative or regulatory requirements where changes to business process are urgently required but not specified. It is expected that consultation with key stakeholders would still occur prior to processing the change as a minor amendment.
  • Reflect business process changes already approved by one of the following and thus making stakeholder consultation unnecessary: Vice Chancellor’s Senior Team (VCST), individual members of VCST, Academic Board or one of its Standing Committees or Council or one of its Committees.
Policy Administration Management System (PAMS) The University approved centrally controlled policy repository (policy library) which is the authoritative source for all University-wide policies and procedures, accessible through the FedUni website.
Policy A formal statement of principle that regulates University operations
Policy and Quality Services Facilitates the development, review, approval and endorsement processes of University policies and procedures
Policy Development and Review Form Used to initiate the process for developing, amending or rescinding a policy or procedure
Policy Library The web portal for accessing current published policies, procedures and forms
Policy Sponsor

Responsible for:

  • Providing advice on approved policies and procedures under their stewardship
  • Drafting or overseeing the drafting of policy or procedure
  • Reviewing policy or procedure
  • Consulting key stakeholders including the incorporation of  university-wide feedback  in the document as appropriate
  • Obtaining advice from relevant subject matter experts as required; and
  • Ensuring new or major amended policy and procedures are promulgated
Policy Systems Administrator Responsible for the system administration of the University’s policy administration management system (PAMS), including developing and managing systems necessary to implement the University’s policy process and associated continuous improvement projects
Procedure Describes the operational processes/steps to be adhered to in order to maintain effective adherence to the prescribed principles outlined in the associated policy

Made under a University Statute to regulate interpretation and implementation of the Statute. Matters which involve penalties should be included in a Regulation rather than a policy. Regulations are enforceable by the University and are a permanent public record

Review A formal, comprehensive analysis of a policy or procedure conducted by the Policy Sponsor for the purposes of establishing the need for amendment (major or minor) or further development
Scheduled Review A review that occurs every five years for a policy and every three years for a procedure.
Standing Resolution of Council A short statement or directive issued and approved by Council. Standing Resolutions give effect to matters considered by Council which are not detailed in other instruments.
Statute The subordinate legislation related to the governance of the internal affairs of the University under the Federation University Australia Act 2010 (as listed in Part 5 Section 29 of the Act). Statutes are enforceable by the University and are a permanent public record. Statutes can only be made, amended or revoked by Council and must be approved by the relevant State Minister with responsibility for tertiary education. A University Statute comes into operation on the day on which the Minister approves it (unless otherwise specified in the statute).
University legislation Includes the Federation University Australia Act 2010, University Statutes and Regulations

Policy Statement

Federation University Australia is governed by the Federation University Australia Act 2010 (the Act) which provides for the establishment of the University, its governing body (the Council) and its core functions. The Act stipulates that the Council is responsible for establishing policy and procedural principles for the operation of the University consistent with legal requirements and community expectations.

Federation University Australia policies and procedures will reflect and promote qualities that are consistent with the University’s core values and strategic intent.

Policy and Quality Services

Policy and Quality Services is responsible for facilitating the development, review, major amendment, approval and endorsement of Federation University Australia policies and procedures.

Policy and Quality Services, has responsibility for:

  • Facilitating  the implementation of a consistent policy process across the University;
  • Monitoring the status of University policies and procedures to ensure they are developed, implemented and reviewed in a timely manner and, in particular, that any policy gaps, overlaps and inconsistencies are identified and rectified;
  • Facilitating processes to ensure that  University policies and procedures are, current, relevant and useful;
  • Facilitating  new or amended University policies and procedures for publishing in the University’s approved Policy Library;
  • Advising Policy Sponsors if Policies and Procedures need  further amendment; and
  • Facilitating rescission of superseded or obsolete documents.


The following principles apply to all approved University policies and procedures:

  • all members of the University community must comply with University policies and procedures when carrying out their University activities
  • policies and procedures must be applied fairly, consistently and with common sense


In some broad governance circumstances, such as risk, quality and project governance, an overarching framework document may be developed to document and confirm the University’s commitment to that cause through describing the intended application of the associated policies and procedures.


Policies are formal statements of principle that regulate, direct and control University operations. They underpin decision-making and/or the way members of the University community conduct the activities of the University, with the following characteristics:

  • a policy must have long-term application to the University as a whole or a broad cross-section of the University community;
  • policy statements are consistent with and ensure that the University complies with its statutes and regulations, relevant legislation, national standards and community expectations;
  • policies assist the University to:
    • attain its strategic goals and priorities
    • promote operational efficiencies; and
    • reduce risks.

Policies will undergo a scheduled review every five (5) years, or sooner as deemed necessary.


All procedures:

  • relate to a policy and are consistent with the policy to which they refer;
  • mandate operational activities, assign responsibilities and step through the practical actions required to support the implementation of policy statements, or to assist the University’s operations and compliance with external requirements;
  • have application across the University.

Procedures will undergo a scheduled review every three (3) years, or sooner as deemed necessary.


Forms attached or referred to in the relevant procedure have their use described within the body of the procedure. PAMS is the repository for all forms which are accessible to users through the Policy Library and documented within the relevant procedure eg University endorsed tools that are restricted to staff use only.

Guidelines, Instructions, Manuals, Handbooks and Checklists

These local documents fall outside this policy and its associated procedure as they are not mandatory nor formally approved but may be utilised to provide helpful information and advice such as additional detail and context or list matters which might be taken into account in carrying out an action from a particular procedure

Policy Library

The University’s approved Policy Administration Management System (PAMS) is the official repository for Federation University Australia policies and procedures.

The Policy Systems Administrator or delegate has management and oversight of PAMS and is responsible for publishing all current policies and procedures to the FedUni website Policy Library.

Policy development, amendment, review and rescission

Development and review of all policies and procedures will be undertaken in accordance with the Policy Governance Procedure.

New policies and procedures and amendments to existing policies and procedures are initiated by Policy Sponsors through completion and submission of a Policy Development and Review Form to the  Manager, Policy and Quality Services

Following appropriate, documented consultation and feedback and approval by the relevant Approval Authority, new, amended or reviewed policies and procedures will be published in the Policy Library.

Once identified policies and procedures for rescission have approval by the relevant Approval Authority they will be removed from the Policy Library.


Approval Authorities are responsible for the oversight of compliance requirements as they relate to the University’s policies and procedures and initiating any required action to ensure that the content of policies and procedures meets all the University’s compliance obligations. (Policy Approval Authorities are responsible for approving the final draft of the policy or procedure before publication in the Policy Library).

Policy Sponsors are responsible for leadership and guidance in supporting compliance. As appropriate, compliance requirements should be integrated into everyday work practices.

Supporting Documents



  • Council is responsible for monitoring the implementation, outcomes and scheduled review of this policy and its accompanying procedure
  • The Vice-Chancellor is responsible for maintaining the content of this policy as delegated by Council


The Policy Governance Policy will be communicated throughout the University community in the form of:

  • An Announcement Notice via FedNews website and on the ‘Recently Approved Documents’ page on Policy Central to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy
  • Notification to Council
  • Notification to Academic Board


The Policy Governance Policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  • An Announcement Notice via FedNews website and on the ‘Recently Approved Documents’ page on Policy Central to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy
  • Policy training sessions
  • Staff induction program