The Academic Quality Handbook : Enhancing Higher Education in Universities and Further Education Colleges book cover
1st Edition

The Academic Quality Handbook
Enhancing Higher Education in Universities and Further Education Colleges

ISBN 9781138179578
Published December 23, 2016 by Routledge
264 Pages

FREE Standard Shipping
SAVE $28.00
was $140.00
USD $112.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Universities and further education colleges are under increasing pressure to provide 'quality' for their students. Quality assurance and development issues affect the staff, resources, administration and culture of an academic institution, yet there is often a lack of clear guidance available to those responsible for implementing best practice.

This book provides practical guidelines for managing academic quality assurance and quality enhancement, outlining best practice from both the UK and the rest of the world. Each chapter addresses the key points, risks and good practice across a wide range of quality issues, drawing explicitly and in detail from the QAA guidance on the Code of Practice, Subject Benchmarks, Qualifications Framework and Institutional Audit.
The material is presented in an accessible and straightforward style, incorporating useful features such as development questions for individual or team review.

A maintained website accompanying this book ( contains further useful resources, with updates and supplementary material in this constantly changing area.

Table of Contents

Introduction -- Part 1: The quality -- 1 The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) -- Use of the FHEQ 12; Implementing the precepts of the FHEQ 13; QAissues with the FHEQ -- 2 Benchmarking academic standards: the subject benchmark statements (SBSs) Aims and function 19; QA issues with SBSs 21; QE issues with SBSs -- 3 Institutional audit -- Aims objectives of institutional audit 24; Meaning -- consequences of audit outcomes 25; Discipline audit trails (DATs) -- Criteria for confidence judgements -- 4 Information on quality and standards in higher education quality and standards -- Management information 37; QA issues with information on quality and standards 41; QE issues with information on -- 5 Managing quality enhancement (QE) -- What is QE? 45; Regulatory and transparency dividends of QA for enhancement 48; Managing complex enhancements to quality -- Quality at the edge of chaos -- Part 2: Managing quality in the context of the QAA Code of Practice -- 6 The Code of Practice -- Structure of the Code’s sections -- 7 Collaborative provision -- Types of collaborative provision 64; Background to collaborative -- provision 66; How and why franchises go wrong 67; Implementing the -- precepts for collaborative provision 71; QA issues with collaborative -- provision 79; QE issues with collaborative provision -- 8 Students with disabilities -- The Code and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001 -- (SENDA) 90; Comparing the Code’s precepts and the Act -- Implementing the precepts 83; QA issues with students with -- disabilities; QE issues with students with disabilities -- 9 External examining systems -- External examiners, quality and politics 106; Implementing the -- precepts 107; QA issues with external examining systems 115; QE -- issues with external examining systems -- 10 Academic appeals and student complaints -- The new culture of complaint management 119; Implementing the -- precepts 121; QA issues with student appeals and complaints -- QE issues with student appeals and complaints -- 11 The assessment of students -- The Achilles’ heel of quality 128; Implementing the precepts -- QAissues with the assessment of students 137; QE issues with the assessment of students -- 12 Programme approval, monitoring and review -- The metacode 140; Managing quality in approval, monitoring and -- review (AMR) 141; The approval process 145; Implementing the -- precepts 146; QA issues with AMR; QE issues with AMR -- 13 Career education information and guidance (CEIG) -- From guidance to employability 161; Organizational issues in -- supporting CEIG 162; Progress files 163; Scope and focus of CEIG – -- enhancement issues 163; Implementing the precepts 165; QA issues with CEIG; QE issues with CEIG -- 14 Placement learning -- From industrial sandwich to SME consultancy 171; Balancing QA and -- QE in placement management 173; Implementing the -- precepts 174; QA issues with placement learning 182; QE issues with placement learning -- 15 Recruitment and admission of students -- From elitism to diversity 185; Implementing the precepts 186; QA -- issues with recruitment and admissions 191; QE issues with recruitment and admissions -- 16 Distance learning -- Distance learning and academic standards 194; Types of distance -- learning and implications for QA and QE 195; Implementing the -- guidelines 197; QA issues with distance learning 204; QE issues with distance learning -- 17 Quality assurance and research degree programmes -- The HEFCE framework: improving standards in postgraduate research -- degree programmes 208; The QAA Code of Practice: postgraduate research programmes 213; QA issues with research degree programmes 224; QE issues in research degree programmes -- 18 Quality issues in foundation degrees -- Background 227; Foundation degrees and QA 228; QA issues foundation degrees 236; QE and foundation degrees -- Appendix 1: Useful contacts -- Appendix 2: Action planner, Log of key learning and development points -- References -- Further reading -- Index

View More



Professor Patrick McGhee is Pro Vice-Chancellor at the University of Central Lancashire and is a subject reviewer and institutional auditor for the QAA.