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Award Courses Offered in Collaboration with a Third Party - Quality Assurance

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) Any course leading to a Charles Sturt University award may be categorised in the following ways:

  1. offered by Charles Sturt University (the University) directly or with a third party;
  2. offered onshore or offshore; and
  3. offered in the English language or in a language other than English.

(2) For the purposes of this Policy, a third party is any organisation that has an academic involvement in the offering of a Charles Sturt University award course. This term does not refer to another organisation that has an administrative role only in the delivery of a specific offering of a course leading to an award of the University.

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Section 2 - Policy

Award Courses offered directly by Charles Sturt University (the University)

(3) For courses leading to a Charles Sturt University award and offered directly by the University, with or without administrative support from other parties, all of the University's standard policies, regulations and processes apply without modification in order for the University's quality assurance requirements to be met.

Award Courses offered with a Third Party

(4) According to government guidelines, where any Charles Sturt University award course is offered with a third party, the University is the principal and the third party is the agent. The principal carries full responsibility for all aspects of delivery, including:

  1. quality and standards of course content, teaching, learning and assessment comparable to that on other campus(es) of the institution;
  2. teaching by staff qualified at a level comparable to those on other campuses of the institution;
  3. resources and facilities adequate for the delivery of the course; and
  4. adequate measures to protect the welfare of students. (From National Protocols for Higher Education Approval Processes, DEST, 2000.)

Ongoing Evaluation

(5) The Faculty has responsibility for ensuring that mechanisms are in place so that it can regularly assure itself and the University on:

  1. the ongoing suitability and currency of the teaching materials and teaching strategies for achieving the identified learning outcomes, both for individual subjects and the course as a whole for the students who undertake this particular offering;
  2. the ongoing quality of teaching;
  3. the ongoing quality of assessment, including all the processes involved in assessment;
  4. the ongoing provision of support services and availability of learning resources (library, IT resources, etc.); and
  5. ongoing adequacy and quality of physical resources;
including effective processes for feedback to be obtained, and for responsiveness to such feedback, in particular the timely addressing of problems identified with any of the above areas.

(6) Documentation held by the Faculty will include:

  1. the formal agreement between Charles Sturt University (the University) and the third party. This will reflect the expectations of all parties concerning course provision, and must detail inter alia the responsibilities of the third party, the Faculty and administrative and support areas of the University for the effective operation of the course. The agreement must also detail the minimum requirements for quality assuring the offering of the course as they apply to the third party, the Faculty's, the Academic Senate and, where appropriate, to other areas of the University;
  2. details of the quality assurance mechanisms and processes the Faculty will regularly and systematically implement to assure itself that the course agreement is being implemented and the desired outcomes of the course are being achieved. The minimum frequency of the implementation by the Faculty of these quality assurance mechanisms should also be stated; and
  3. records of all quality assurance audits and reviews the Faculty has conducted with respect to the course, including performance indicator data and other quality assurance information collected from the third party or obtained independently by the Faculty.

(7) Academic Senate will periodically audit the quality assurance processes of a Faculty as they apply to the offering of an award course in collaboration with a third party. The Senate audit will assess whether and how effectively the Faculty is implementing the quality assurance clauses of the formal agreement, and ensuring that the learning outcomes of the course are being achieved.

Annual Report

(8) For each offering of an award course with a third party (either in English or in another language), the Faculty is required to provide an annual moderation report to the Academic Senate that will enable the Senate to satisfy itself that there is comparability of graduate knowledge across offerings of the course.