Review of Established Programs

Document Currently Under Review

Current Status: For Uni-wide Comment 31 January 2023

Review of Established Sealed Award Programs (Higher Education) Procedure

Policy code: LT1281
Policy owner: Dean, Learning and Teaching
Approval authority: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)
Approval date: 30 October 2005
Next review date: 27 May 2025

Purpose

This procedure describes the process and criteria for the review of all established sealed award programs that are not programs conducted solely by research.

This review process quality assures the content, teaching, academic integrity, academic standards, student experience and outcomes of Higher Education established sealed award programs at Federation University Australia and facilitates timely and purposeful improvement in a planned and systematic manner.

Scope

This procedure applies to all established sealed award Higher Education programs that are not conducted solely by research. This procedure and related policy for reviewing the established sealed award Higher Education programs forms part of the University's quality assurance framework.

According to the TEQSA Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021 “All accredited courses of study are subject to periodic (at least every seven years) comprehensive reviews that are overseen by peak academic governance processes and include external referencing or other benchmarking activities." The aim of this procedure is to ensure the TEQSA review requirements are met at Federation University Australia.

Legislative Context

Definitions

Term Definition
EOPR Executive Officer, Program Reviews (Academic Secretariat)
GPS Global Professional School
GRS Graduate Research School
HE Higher Education
HECC Higher Education Curriculum Committee
Program Review Institute/School Contact The staff member within the Institute or School with the responsibility to liaise directly with Academic Secretariat in relation to all matters relating to the program review process.
PRP Program Review Panel
RHDC Research Higher Degrees Committee
Sealed Awards Higher Education programs listed in Schedule 5.1
APC Academic Programs Committee

Actions

Review Schedule

The University’s Review of Established Sealed Award Programs HE Schedule is maintained by the Academic Secretariat. The schedule includes:

  1. The date of future reviews;
  2. When previous reviews were held;
  3. When the Institute/School response to the program review report was approved by Academic Board.
  4. When 12 monthly progress reports are due.

The Higher Education Curriculum Committee (HECC) will notify the Executive Deans of the Institutes/Dean of GPS/Dean of Graduate Studies of program review timelines as determined in the Review of Established Sealed Award Programs HE Schedule in a timely manner.

If an external accreditation and review process exists for a program, timing of the internal program review may be negotiated with Chair of HECC to enable, where possible, the review process to be carried out simultaneously.

Programs are required to be reviewed every five years from the date of commencement (not date approved). In special circumstances, such as newly emerging or rapidly changing fields of study, Academic Board may require a program to undergo a program review more frequently.

Self-Assessment

No Activity Responsibility Steps
1.

Program Review Notification

Executive Deans/Deans will be notified of programs due for review as per the Review of Established Sealed Award HE Program Schedule.

Executive Officer, Program Reviews (Academic Secretariat) (EOPR)
2.

Self-Assessment

The Institute/School will complete a Self Assessment on the relevant program using the program review Self-Assessment Report form.

Institute/School

The Self-Assessment Report describes all evidence which must be collected and submitted.

All questions in the Self-Assessment Report must be completed.

3.

Submission

The completed Self-Assessment Report is forwarded to the Institute Board/School Board/RHDC for review and approval.

Once approved by the Institute Board/School Board/RHDC it is sent to the EOPR no later than 2 weeks prior to the program review panel.

Chair of Institute Board/School Board/RHDC Endorsement by the Institute Board/School Board/RHDC is a quality assurance process to ensure the submission is complete and accurate.

Panel Membership

No Activity Responsibility Steps
1.

Formation of Program Review Panel (PRP)

The Institute/School will nominate the Program Review Panel Membership in consultation with the Chair of HECC and the EOPR.

Once the Program Review Membership has been finalised and panel members notified of the date, the Program Review Institute/School Contact will contact the EOPR in Academic Secretariat to coordinate the PRP meeting.

Program Review Institute/School Contact / EOPR

Refer to the following section for this process:

Program Review Panel Membership List

A date will have been selected, in consultation with the EOPR, before the Institute/School contact advises panel members.

The Institute/School is to confirm availability of panel members and complete the template before sending to the EOPR in Academic Secretariat.

All places on the panel must be filled. If a place cannot be filled the Institute/School should provide a compelling reason and seek an exemption in writing from the Chair of HECC. Details of any exemptions, along with apologies from any panel members, must be recorded on the Program Review Panel Report.

2.

Arrangement for Program Review Panel Meeting

Academic Secretariat will make the arrangements for the Program Review Panel Meeting in collaboration with the Program Review Institute/School Contact.

EOPR

Program Review Institute/School Contact

EOPR will send invitations and the Self-Assessment Report with any additional documents approved by the Institute Board/School Board/RHDC, to panel members at least 10 working days prior to the panel meeting.

3.

Composition of Program Review Panel

The Chair of HECC will appoint the Chair of the Review Panel. This person must be a current or former member of the HECC and hold a position at Level C or above or be the Executive Director of FedUni TAFE or their nominee.

Where possible, the Chair of the Program Review Panel should not be a member of the Institute/School. The Chair should be independent in the review process.

Chair, HECC

Program Review Contact Person

Refer to the following section of this procedure:

Program Review Panel Membership List

Chair of HECC to notify the EOPR and Program Review Contact Person of who will be Chairing the Program Review Panel.

The Chair should be independent in the review process. The Chair must declare any conflicts of interest when the panel is convened.

Institute/School representatives on the panel will provide program-related expertise.

Panel Review Process

No Activity Responsibility Steps
1.

Meeting and Deliberations of the Program Review Panel

The panel will meet for one day and will consider the Self-Assessment Report and produce commendations, affirmations and recommendations. The panel will be given the opportunity to meet with members of the University, representatives from professional and industry bodies, employers and members of the community as it sees fit.

EOPR

Chair of Program Review

Academic Secretariat will provide administrative support during this panel meeting and assist the Chair of the program review panel in drafting the report.

The EOPR will provide a partially populated program review report for the Chair to complete during and after the day of the panel review.

2.

Program Review Panel Report

Program Review Panel Report is to be composed and sent to Program Review Panel members for review and finalisation.

Program Review Panel

EOPR

The draft PRP Report must be forwarded to the PRP members for review within ten working days of the PRP meeting.

The draft PRP Report should be sent by the Chair of the panel to the EOPR who will forward it to all panel members.

Panel members have 5 working days in which to respond. Any feedback returned will then be forwarded to the Chair of the PRP who will complete the final report.

The final report will then be sent back to the EOPR to send through to the Institute/School.

Institute/School Response and Committee Approval

No Activity Responsibility Steps
1.

The Institute/School Response

The Institute/School will review the Program Review Panel Report and add its response.

The response will then be tabled at the Institute Board/School Board/RHDC for review and approval.

Institute/School

The Institute/School must respond to the PRP report within two months of receiving it.

Refer to the:

Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report provided online and/or by the EOPR

2.

HECC Approval

HECC will receive the Self-Assessment Report, Program Review Panel Report and approve the Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report.

The Director, Learning and Teaching or Dean, GPS or Dean, Graduate Studies (or nominee) will represent the Institute/School to put the recommendation to HECC and respond to any questions the committee may have.

Institute/School

HECC

The documents are tabled at a HECC meeting for approval of the Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report.

All documentation is then forwarded to Academic Board for review and approval of the Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report.

3.

Academic Board Endorsement

Academic Board receives all documentation for review and approval of the Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report. The Review of Established Sealed Award Programs HE Schedule is then updated to note the program review process has been completed pending a follow up report in 12 months.

Academic Secretariat

Academic Board

The documents are tabled at an Academic Board meeting for approval of the Institute/School Response to the Program Review Panel Report.

Continuous Improvement

No Steps Responsibility Comments
1.

Implementation of Changes

Program modification, new or revised programs and other curriculum changes will be submitted through the usual process to Institute Board/School Board/RHDC and HECC, unless there are resourcing implications in which case APC approval will be required.

Institute/School

Refer to the:

Approval and Maintenance of Award Programs (Higher Education) Procedure

2.

12 Month Program Progress Report

A 12 month program progress report will be provided by the Institute/School against each of the recommendations/improvement opportunities identified by the PRP. The progress report will be submitted to HECC for approval and noted by Academic Board.

Where appropriate, HECC may request the Institute/School provide further annual progress reports if recommendation implementation plans exceed 12 months.

EOPR

Institute/School

The Institute Board/School Board/RHDC is to add 12 Month Program Progress Report on their Schedule of Business.

Program Review Panel Membership List

Member Description No. Members Required *
Chair A current or former member of HECC (at level C or above) or the Executive Director of FedUni TAFE or their nominee who will also chair the panel. 1
External Professional
A member external to the University, with expertise in the discipline or field.

1 (minimum)

2 (maximum)

External Academic A member external to the University who is an academic holding a position of Senior Lecturer or above. 1
a. Academic Staff A University academic staff member from another Institute/School. 1
b. Academic Staff An academic staff member who teaches in the program. 1
Academic Services A member of staff from the Academic Services department (Institute/School professional staff member) 1
Program Coordinator Program Coordinator of the program 1
Member of Accreditation Body A senior member of an accrediting body. For example - Director of Nursing at a hospital. 1 only if appropriate/required.
Employer An employer who has employed graduates from the program. 1
Graduate A graduate who has graduated from the program within the last three years. 1
Director, Learning and Teaching/Dean, GPS/Dean, Graduate Studies The Director, Learning and Teaching from the Institute that delivers the program/Dean, GPS/Dean, Graduate Studies (or nominee). 1

* All places on the panel must be filled. If a place cannot be filled, the Institute/School should provide a compelling reason and seek an exemption from the Chair of HECC. Details of any exemptions, along with apologies from any panel members, must be recorded on the Program Review Panel Report.

* * Director, Learning and Teaching/Dean, GPS/Dean, Graduate Studies nominee: an academic who currently teaches in the program cannot sit in for the Director, Learning and Teaching/Dean, GPS/Dean, Graduate Studies on a review panel.

Responsibilities

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), as the Approval Authority, is responsible for monitoring the implementation, outcomes and scheduled review of this procedure

Dean, Learning and Teaching, as Document Owner, is responsible for maintaining the content of this procedure.

Promulgation

This procedure will be communicated throughout the University through:

  1. An announcement on the FedNews website;
  2. The 'What's New' page on the Policy Central Website.

Implementation

This procedure will be implemented through:

  1. An announcement on the FedNews website;
  2. The 'What's New' page on the Policy Central Website;
  3. A memo to the Executive Deans/Dean, GPS/Dean, Graduate Studies and Institute Boards/School Boards/RHDC;
  4. An agenda item at Higher Education Curriculum Committee and Academic Board.

Records Management

Document Title Location Responsible Officer Minimum Retention Period
Program Review and Re-accreditation (HE) Document

Academic Secretariat

Institute/Schools

Executive Officer, Higher Education Curriculum Committee

Program Coordinator

7 years
Program Review Institute/School Report to CC Institute/School Executive Officer, Institute Board/School Board/RHDC or Programs Committee 7 years
Review Panel Meeting Notes Academic Secretariat Executive Officer, Review Panel 7 years