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'Academic Quality and Standards Committee' - Membership and Terms of Reference

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Section 1 - Establishment

Background

(1) Charles Sturt University (the University) is required to exercise academic governance oversight of its learning and teaching activities, through the Academic Senate and its sub-committees. The duties of the Academic Quality and Standards Committee shall apply to all matters associated with strategic initiatives and academic governance issues pertaining to the quality of learning and teaching.

Purpose

(2) The Academic Quality and Standards Committee shall be the peak learning and teaching body responsible for oversight of learning and teaching quality including those delivered at Educational Delivery (Award) Partners, within the University. It will provide advice to the Academic Senate on learning and teaching, policies, initiatives and innovation that promotes learning and teaching interests of the University and that fosters learning and teaching that is of the highest quality.

(3) In particular, the Academic Quality and Standards Committee shall:

  1. advise the Academic Senate on issues of policy and learning and teaching innovation, and
  2. provide strategic leadership in learning and teaching matters including scholarship and staff professional development.
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Section 2 - Glossary

(4) For the purpose of this document:

  1. Committee - means the Academic Quality and Standards Committee. 
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Section 3 - Membership

(5) The membership of the committee is set out below:

  1. Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Teaching) (chair)
  2. Dean, Learning and Teaching Innovation
  3. Pro Vice-Chancellor (First Nations Engagement) or nominee
  4. Pro Vice-Chancellor (International) or nominee
  5. Dean, Graduate Research
  6. Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Student Success or nominee
  7. University Librarian or nominee
  8. Deputy Deans
  9. Associate Deans (Academic)
  10. Director, Academic Quality and Standards
  11. One academic staff member from each faculty with expertise in learning and teaching, nominated by the relevant Executive Dean
  12. One academic staff member from each faculty with responsibility for workplace learning, nominated by the relevant Executive Dean
  13. One faculty professional/general team member with expertise in grade administration nominated by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) in consultation with the Executive Deans
  14. Two student members nominated by the Student Senate

(6) Nominated members of the committee will have terms of office of two years.

(7) Casual vacancies will be filled in the following manner:

  1. For nominated or appointed positions, the relevant position or body will nominate or appoint a replacement member.

(8) A person who fills a casual vacancy holds office as a member for the rest of the term of the person’s predecessor in office.

(9) The chair may grant to any staff member of the University, the right of audience and debate for a specified period of time.

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Section 4 - Functions and responsibilities

Committee responsibilities

(10) The Academic Quality and Standards Committee responsibilities apply across all course and subject delivery modes and locations, including Educational Delivery (Award) Partners. The committee will:

  1. oversee relevant aspects of the Academic Quality Policy and associated standards, including monitoring of staff levels of scholarly activity
  2. oversee the quality and effectiveness of educational innovations or proposals for educational innovations, and encourage improvements in learning and teaching
  3. monitor compliance with relevant standards in the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021, receive and consider reports and monitor the impact of improvement actions, including those relating to Educational Delivery (Award) Partners
  4. provide recommendations to the Academic Senate on learning and teaching standards and measures of quality, including establishment of benchmarks
  5. monitor risks associated with the quality of learning and teaching and related academic standards, including those relating to Educational Delivery (Award) Partners, receive and consider annual reports on progression, attrition and completion of courses, including external benchmarking. These will include, at minimum, performance by:
    1. cohort, including First Nations students, and
    2. location, including under Educational Delivery (Award) Partners
  6. receive and consider regular subject quality assurance reports from Faculty Assessment Committees/Faculty Boards including method of assessment and grading, grade distributions, and student feedback by cohort and location
  7. oversee relevant policies and procedures, receive and consider regular reports and make recommendations to the Academic Senate or the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), including but not limited to:
    1. the awarding of grades, assessment, benchmarking, learning resources, educational support, workplace learning, and all other aspects of learning and teaching
    2. the management processes associated with student grievances, complaints and appeals relating to learning and teaching, and
    3. academic integrity and academic misconduct including those relating to Educational Delivery (Award) Partners
  8. oversee workplace learning, placements and other community-based learning including those relating to Educational Delivery (Award) Partners
  9. receive and consider advice from Faculty Boards on learning and teaching policies and procedures, assessment practices, issues and risks
  10. receive and consider subject quality assurance reports from Faculty Assessment Committees/Faculty Boards, and
  11. oversee delegations related to assessments and grade approvals (in the Delegation Schedule E - Academic and Research).

Advisory role and referral of matters

(11) The committee will advise the Academic Senate on all matters relating to the quality of learning and teaching and academic governance of the learning and teaching activities of the University.

(12) The committee may refer any item to the University Courses Committee, University Research Committee or Faculty Boards for discussion, consideration and/or action, and may refer relevant matters for action or noting to other committees or officers as appropriate.

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Section 5 - Meetings

Quorum

(13) A quorum for a meeting of the committee shall be a majority of the membership: that is, half of the entire membership, plus one. Vacant positions are included when calculating a quorum.

Meetings

(14) Meetings will be published by the Office of Governance and Corporate Administration in an annual schedule of meetings, approved by the Academic Senate. Meetings are open to all members of the University.

Agendas and minutes

(15) Agendas and minutes for the meetings of the Academic Quality and Standards Committee will be prepared by the Office of Governance and Corporate Administration. 

Related expenses

(16) Nil.

Conflicts of interest

(17) Where a member has a perceived or material conflict of interest, they must declare this to the chair and at the committee meeting before the item of business is discussed. 

Variations

(18) Variations to the terms of reference and/or membership of the committee must be approved by the Academic Senate.