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What is Quality Assurance?

If you're confused by terminology and acronyms, and unsure how quality assurance relates to you and your course, then this is the place for you!
by

Sarah Halpin

on 29 January 2013

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Transcript of What is Quality Assurance?

How does it affect you? What is Quality Assurance? Written by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, 2012 StudentEngagement@qaa.ac.uk First things first... All universities are independent bodies, awarding their own degrees. They manage the quality and standards of these awards. Threshold academic standards are about the level of achievement that you have to meet to get your award. It's what ensures a BA English from one university meets the same standards as a BA English from another! Academic quality is about how well your university supports you in your learning through: teaching
support available
how you are assessed
resources available. Quality assurance is all about guaranteeing the standards and quality of the education you get. So why does that matter to you? Having quality and standards means you and everyone else can have confidence in your education at university and your degree. As a student there are lots of opportunities for you to get involved. We call this student engagement. filling out questionnaires about your course
speaking in focus groups or to your student rep
becoming a student/course rep All of this ultimately makes your educational experience better. Your feedback helps shape good and bad practice and improves quality at your institution and all over the UK. Universities often work in partnership with their students' union to gather and act on the feedback you give. Universities will carry out checks to make sure quality and standards on your programme are being upheld. So who checks the checking? Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education You contribute by The Quality Assurance Agency is responsible for upholding standards and quality across the UK. How do they do this? QAA produces the UK Quality Code for Higher Education.

This sets out expectations that all providers of UK higher education are required to meet. Watch this for more info... So, what if you have a problem? If you have a complaint about your university, then normally you must first complete the internal complaints or appeals procedures of the university.

QAA also investigates concerns raised about academic standards and quality, where they think these concerns indicate serious systemic or procedural problems. But what is the point of all this? Quality assurance is ultimately all about raising standards and ensuring students have the best possible experience at university. Getting involved means that your voice can be heard and the views of students are made central to the process. Simple. Contact us via

StudentEngagement@QAA.ac.uk
@QAATweets
youtube.com/QAATube Google 'QAA concerns' for more info © The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education 2012
Registered charity numbers 1062746 and SC037786
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