RMIT University by gdf57j

VIEWS: 48 PAGES: 187

									                            APPENDIX A




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix   1
                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX A




     Table No.                                                                                       Table Title                           Page
1                           Mission, goals & objectives by Institution                                                                        …4
2                           List of Teaching & Learning Policies and Plans                                                                    …5
3                           Teaching and Learning Indicators in Use at the Institution                                                        …6
4                           Funding – LTPF and other                                                                                          …8
5                           Organisational Unit Reviews by Institution                                                                        …9
6                           Curriculum Review by Institution                                                                                 … 10
7                           Assessment Policy and its Applications                                                                           … 12
8                           Graduate Attribute Statement and its Applications                                                                … 13
9                           Student Experience                                                                                               … 14
10                          Professional Development by Institution                                                                          … 18
11                          Appointment Criteria by Institution                                                                              … 22
12                          Review of Staff by Institution                                                                                   … 28
13                          Awards and Grants to recognise Teaching Excellence and Innovative Programs that support Student Learning         … 29




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                              i
                                                                                                                                                                                                            APPENDIX A




Background
This audit has been prepared as part of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s (formerly the Carrick Institute) Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Project. The overall purpose of this national project is to
reward and recognise quality teaching in Higher Education through systematic implementation of indicators and metrics on teaching and teacher effectiveness.

The key goal of the TQI Project is the enhancement of the outcomes of students’ learning and experiences. Four dimensions of quality teaching have been identified by Carrick Institute as being particularly critical
for quality learning and teaching in universities. These dimensions are:
    • Institutional climate and systems – the institution’s commitment to the enhancement, transformation and innovation of learning, which involves evaluation of institution, staff and student levels of satisfaction;
        the institution should reflect support for student-centred learning approaches, value teaching and teachers, identify desirable teacher characteristics and employ and develop relevant and appropriate
        teaching experience and qualifications.
    • Engagement and learning community – engagement and participation of students and staff in collaborative, active learning and opportunities to participate in multiple learning communities; industry
        involvement in engaging with learning is also significant to the RMIT context.
    • Diversity and inclusivity – with an increasingly globalised Higher Education sector, student and staff diversity has intensified. Institutions need to embrace inclusivity of student and staff diversity and cater
        for different learning needs through aspects such as international students, increased diversity of cultures, social origins of students, social economic status of students, race and ethnicity of students/staff,
        gender of students/staff.
    • Assessment – assessment policy and practices that transform the student experience and fosters lifelong learning; assessment is based on evidence of learning, current assessment theory and practice, is
        regularly reviewed internally and externally for internal improvement, reflects commitment to formative assessment, assessment of graduate attributes, and encourage innovative assessment practices and
        sharing this knowledge and practice across the university.

These dimensions will influence the development of individualised frameworks of teaching quality indicators undertaken by the eight universities involved in the Stage 2 of the TQI Project. The universities involved
in the Stage 2 of the TQI Project are: Deakin University; Griffith University; Macquarie University; RMIT University; University of Queensland; University of South Australia; University of Tasmania; and University of
Western Australia. Each institution will develop their learning and teaching indicator framework within their institutional contexts.

RMIT currently uses a suite of indicators to set targets and measure progress against the goals outlined in its Strategic Plan, Business Plan, Research Plan and Academic Plan. Some of these indicators and
targets relate specifically to learning and teaching outcomes. The next step in developing a RMIT indicator framework for advancing learning and teaching is the compilation of an audit of strategic directions, policy
and processes. The framework of the audit was developed by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council; and RMIT data are presented in the following matrices. The data were located predominantly from
RMIT’s website and then each table was member-checked by key/relevant staff from the particular area. Comments or feedback were incorporated into the final version of the audit.

Accuracy of data collation, such as this audit, is shaped by time and this is acknowledged in the audit documentation. The data captured in tis final version of the audit (June 2008) represents the accuracy of
details at RMIT up to 31 March 2008.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                     1
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                                                           1. Mission, goals & objectives by institution

                               Title, Affiliation, Mission                                                                             Major Goals/Vision                Values                                                                           Key Priorities
                               Motto               Statement
                                                   Mission                                                                             Vision:                           Values:                                                                          To achieve our vision, we will pursue the following
                                                                                                                RMIT is a global       In 2010 RMIT will be:             Useful:                                                                          priorities:
                               Motto: Perita manus, mens exulta which is translated as “the skilled hand, the


                                                                                                                university of          -Global in outlook and action,    -Our graduates are creative, skilled and highly employable.                      Priority 1: Build a global university grounded in Melbourne and
                                                                                                                technology with its    offering our students and staff   -Knowledge and skills developed in our students are relevant and applicable      connected to communities, enterprises and industry across the
                                                                                                                heart in the city of   a global passport to learning     to the needs of communities, industry and individuals.                           world, providing our students with a global passport to learning
                                                                                                                Melbourne. We          and work                          -Our staff are outcome-oriented and agile in their approach to meeting the       and work.
                                                                                                                create and                                               needs of communities, industry and individuals.
                                                                                                                disseminate            -Urban in orientation and                                                                                          Priority 2: Position RMIT as the first choice provider of work- and
                                                                                                                knowledge to meet      creativity, reflecting and        Creative:                                                                        industry-relevant learning.
                                                                                                                the needs of           shaping the city of the 21st      -Opportunities for students and staff to fulfil their potential are created.
                                                                                                                industry and           century                           -Innovative curriculum and research solutions are sought, applied and            Priority 3: Develop focused areas of excellence in research and
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                community and                                            rewarded.                                                                        scholarship that reflect our global engagement with industries and
                               Source: RMIT2010: Designing the Future Strategic Plan




                                                                                                                foster in students     -The first choice provider of     -A creative and inventive culture is fostered.                                   communities. We will assure RMIT’s inclusion in the top 15
                                                                                                                the skills and         work-relevant learning in                                                                                          research performers among Australian universities.
                                                                                                                passion to             Australia, preparing students     Connected:
                                                                                                                contribute to and      for professions and vocations     -Students’ aspirations, experience and needs are central to evaluating our       Priority 4: Ensure flexible, useful pathways and learning
                                                                                                                engage with the        of the future                     performance and shaping improvement.                                             opportunities for students.
                                                                                                                world.                                                   -Industry and community are active partners in our teaching and research.
                                                                                                                                       -One of Australia’s top           -Global networks formed around enterprise, industry and communities              Priority 5: Create an experience for students which is stimulating
                                                                                                                                       research universities,            underpin our operations.                                                         and satisfying and which celebrates diversity.
                               Affiliation: ATN; http://www.atn.edu.au/




                                                                                                                                       internationally known for our     -Team work is supported and encouraged.
                                                                                                                                       applied focus and for                                                                                              Priority 6: Attract, develop, reward and retain staff who will
                               http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance




                                                                                                                                       excellence in research and        Fair:                                                                            embrace the future with energy and creativity and who are
                                                                                                                                       research education in our         -Learning opportunities cater for a diverse range of students, including those   focused on the needs of our students and our partners.
                                                                                                                                       chosen fields.                    who may be disadvantaged in relation to education and/or labour markets.
                                                                                                                                                                         -Respect for Indigenous cultures is reflected in our work.                       Priority 7: Develop facilities and systems to support and sustain
                                                                                                                                                                         -Intellectual freedom and tolerance is nurtured and debate encouraged.           excellence in education and research.
                                                                                                                                                                         -A physically, culturally and socially safe work and study environment is
                                                                                                                                                                         provided for all staff and students.                                             Priority 8: Develop a sustainable platform for achieving our goals.
                                                                                                                                                                         -Ethical, honest and open dealings characterise relationships with students,
                                                                                                                                                                         staff and partners.
                               civilised mind”.




                                                                                                                                                                         Passionate:
                                                                                                                                                                         -Meeting the needs and aspirations of our students and partners is a top
                                                                                                                                                                         priority.
                                                                                                                                                                         -Excellence in teaching, scholarship and research is rewarded and supported.
                                                                                                                                                                         -Cultural and social diversity is supported and celebrated.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 2
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                       2. List of Teaching & Learning Policies and Plans

                               List of Teaching & Learning Plans                                                                                           List of Teaching and Learning Policies                    Other related Policies and Plans eg ICT
                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Learning Plan
                               - Academic Plan 2006-2010: White Paper (Dec 2006)                                                                           Learning and Teaching Policies                            RMIT governance – policies see:
                               http://www.rmit.edu.au/teaching/academicplan                                                                                http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies                http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies

                               The Academic Plan describes actions to realize the values and visions provided in the RMIT Strategic Plan                   -Assessment, Progress and Appeals (some elements are
                               2006-2010.                                                                                                                  under review or being identified for review)
                               “Education at RMIT is about learning and teaching rather than teaching and learning. It is about placing
                               students in the forefront of activity; it is focused on discovery rather than instruction; it is experiential rather than   -Course approval, amendment and discontinuance
                               passive. Students enter RMIT with a diversity of experience, and teaching needs to build on this.
                                                                                                                                                           -Enrolment, Attendance and Student Records
                               RMIT’s learning and teaching strategy has at its core four defining objectives:
                                  • Work ready graduates with a hunger for lifelong learning. Graduates possessing the key capabilities                    -Graduation and Awards
                                       which will support them in employment, enterprise formation and lifelong learning.
                                  • Student satisfaction. A positive student experience engaging with staff, curriculum and learning                       -Program Approval, Administration and Quality Assurance
                                       methodologies.
Institution: RMIT University




                                  • The Global Passport. Belonging to a global university that promotes student mobility, ensures the                      -Student Assistance, Scholarships and Prizes
                                       portability of its awards and prepares graduates to engage in their professions globally.
                                  • A ‘dual sector advantage’. Flexible access to and options for progression within and between awards                    -Student Complaints
                                       and within and between sectors.”
                                                                                     Excerpt from Academic Plan s 3.2 Learning and Teaching.               - Student Conduct

                               - DRAFT Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010                                                                            -Student Selection and Admission
                               Companion paper to the Academic Plan 2007-2010. The action plan to pursue the objectives outlined in the
                               Academic Plan and supported in this strategy include:                                                                       -Work Integrated Learning(WIL) / Practical Placements
                                   • enhance the quality of teaching across the university as a whole
                                   • strengthen support services for learning and teaching
                                   • promote program innovation and staff development
                                   • improve e-learning
                                   • simplify program offerings and complete the process of course rationalisation
                                   • foster the internationalisation of curriculum
                                   • enhance work-integrated and work-based learning

                               Key initiatives from this draft strategy include:
                                  • establishment of the Learning and Teaching Investment Fund designed to support i) learning and
                                        teaching initiatives in Schools; ii) professional development program;
                                  • identification of targets for achievement in learning and teaching.

                               Recently the final version of the Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010 was approved by Academic Board
                               and will be published shortly.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                                   3. Teaching & Learning Indicators in Use at the Institution

                                                                                List of Teaching and Learning Indicators          Descriptors, Measurement, Guidelines                                              Reporting procedures, evaluation & Application
                                                                                2007 -2009 RMIT Key Performance Indicators        Definition:                                      Targets to 2009:
                                                                                (L & T related in HE sector & Melb onshore):
                                                                                Learning Facilities and Support (Agreement with   Percent agreement with SES Learning              60% agreement                    Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                                                                                all questions regarding Library services, IT      Facilities and Support Scale                                                      Council and relevant service groups (Information Technology Services, Library, Property Services,
                                                                                services and Learning support)                                                                                                      etc).
                                                                                Academic Administration (agreement with all       Percent agreement with all SES questions         60% agreement                    Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                               TQI dimension: Institutional & climate systems




                                                                                Administration and Access questions)              regarding administration and access items                                         Council and relevant service groups (Student Services and Academic Registrar’s Groups).
                                                                                % of HE academic staff with teaching              Percent of HE academic staff with a teaching     40%                              Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                                                                                qualifications                                    qualification (excludes research only staff)                                      Council and relevant service groups (People and Culture and Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Development).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the Portfolio and School levels and contribute to annual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                % of RMIT programs having formal credit bearing   Percent of RMIT programs having formal           Data collection method and
                                                                                exchange arrangements with other international    credit bearing exchange arrangements with        target TBD                       Data not currently collected
                                                                                institutions                                      other international institutions
                                                                                Teaching Staff to Student Ratio (onshore) – HE    Student to Teaching Staff Ratio (onshore         Less than the state average      Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                                                                                                                                  students only and exclude research only staff)                                    Council and relevant service groups (People and Culture and Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Development).
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the Portfolio and School levels and contribute to annual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                % of Academic Staff Level B and above holding     Percent of academic staff who are at Level B     65% (pending assessment of       Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                                                                                PhDs                                              and above holding a PhD                          feasibility)                     Council and relevant service groups (People and Culture and Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Development).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the Portfolio and School levels and contribute to annual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                Retention rate – HE                               The proportion of students who achieved a        Maintain or improve
                                                                                                                                  positive outcome of either completing a
                               TQI dimension: Engagement & learning community




                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Included in RMIT’s annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported annually to VCE,
                                                                                                                                  program or continuing study in the subsequent
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Council and relevant service groups (Learning and Teaching Development).
                                                                                                                                  year. Calculated as the number of students
                                                                                                                                  who re-enrol expressed as a proportion of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                  those students who were enrolled in the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                                                                  previous years less those who completed a
                                                                                                                                  program
                                                                                Graduates in full time exployment HE              Percent of domestic HE graduates in full time    3-5% above the national          Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                                                  employment (of those available for work)         average                          annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.
                                                                                                                                  surveyed four months after graduation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                Graduates in enterprise formation HE              Percent of domestic HE graduates in              Maintain above national          Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                                                  enterprise formation surveyed four months        average                          annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.
                                                                                                                                  after graduation
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                                                Graduates in further full time study HE           Percent of domestic HE graduates in further      Improve RMIT performance at a    Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                                                  full time study surveyed four months after       rate 1% greater than the         annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.
                                                                                                                                  graduation                                       change in the national average
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 4
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                        3. Teaching & Learning Indicators in Use at the Institution …cont’d.

                                                           List of Teaching and Learning Indicators         Descriptors, Measurement, Guidelines                                               Reporting procedures, evaluation & Application
                                                           2007 -2009 RMIT Key Performance Indicators       Definition:                                     Targets to 2009:
                                                           (L & T related in HE sector & Melb onshore):
                                                           Good Teaching agreement HE                       Percent agreement with Good Teaching Scale      At or above the national           Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                               TQI dimension: Engagement




                                                                                                            (domestic HE coursework graduates)              average                            annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.
                                  & learning community




                                                                                                                                                                                               Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                               to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
Institution: RMIT University




                                                           Generic Skills agreement HE                      Percent agreement with Generic Skill Scale      Improve relative to the national   Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                            (domestic HE coursework graduates)              average                            annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.

                                                                                                                                                                                               Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                               to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.
                                                           % of Staff Attrition                             Percent of staff attrition (who exit before 3   Decrease
                                                                                                                                                                                               Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                            years of service at the university)
                                                                                                                                                                                               annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups.
                                                           Expanded access and success rates in RMIT        Access and success rates for equity groups in   Meet or exceed the state
                                                           programs for equity groups in Higher Education   RMIT HE programs:                               population reference value
                                                                                                            - Non-English Speaking Background
                                                                                                                                                                                               Included in RMIT’s Strategic Plan and annual Business Plan at the institutional level and reported
                                                                                                            - Low Socio Economic Status
                               TQI dimension:




                                                                                                                                                                                               annually to VCE, Council and relevant service groups (Student services, Academic Registrars).
                                                                                                            - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders
                                                                                                            - Disability
                               Diversity &
                               Inclusivity




                                                                                                                                                                                               Values are also calculated and reported at the program, Portfolio and School levels and contribute
                                                                                                                                                                                               to annual program, School and Portfolio reviews and subsequently the annual planning effort.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            5
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                     4. Funding- LTPF and other

                               LTPF 2006    Purpose/   LTPF 2007 Allocation                              Purpose/ Used for                   LTPF 2008    Purpose/ Used for                        Other eg initiative, such as HECS Plus used
                               Allocation   Used for                                                                                         Allocation                                            solely for teaching and learning,
                                                                                                                                                                                                   performance based funding allocation for
                                                                                                                                                                                                   faculties
                               -Nil         N/A        LTPF allocation ($500 000) combined with a        Learning and Teaching               Nil          LTIF 2008 details                        TAFE sector within RMIT also receives
                                                       $2.1 m allocation from RMIT to establish a        Innovation Projects under the                    http://www.rmit.edu.au/teaching/ltif     targeted funding through the Victorian
                                                       Learning and Teaching Investment Fund             LTIF                                                                                      Government as well as other state and Federal
                                                       (LTIF).                                           Funding priority areas for the                   RMIT continues to leverage the 2007      targeted programs and competitive grant
                                                       http://www.rmit.edu.au/teaching/ltif              Learning and Teaching Innovations                LTPF allocation through its support of   schemes.
                                                                                                         Program incorporate:                             the 2008 Learning and Teaching
                                                       This Fund is one of the key initiatives of the    New ways of learning                             Investment Fund (LTIF) in 2008.          The OTTE eLearning grant is targeted at staff
                                                       RMIT Academic Plan. It supports strategic         • Global Passport                                                                         improved teaching and learning approaches to
                                                       initiatives that promote innovation in learning   • Work Integrated Learning                       RMIT’s additional funding in 2008        their use of eLearning technology. It is staff
                                                       and teaching practice and scholarship across         (WIL)                                         supports the program areas as            development focussed with performance
                                                       RMIT.                                             • e-learning                                     described for 2007, with the inclusion   measures that are directly related to improved
                                                                                                                                                          of two new priority areas: i) a focus    student outcomes.
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                         • teaching and assessment of
                                                       Two funding programs are supported:                  large classes                                 on multi-disciplinary project based
                                                       1. Learning and Teaching Innovations              • provide feedback to students                   approaches to learning, and ii) a new    The TAFE Development Centre Teaching
                                                       Program: supports initiatives in new                                                               Learning and Teaching Sabbatical         Excellence funds are targeted at improved
                                                       curriculum development and new ways of            Course and program development                   program.                                 teaching and learning practices within VET.
                                                       learning in the following areas of strategic      • dual sector qualifications                                                              They are largely staff development focussed.
                                                       importance to RMIT.                               • Indigenous programs                            Funding priority areas associated with
                                                                                                                                                          Learning and Teaching Innovations
                                                                                                         • RMIT Vietnam
                                                       2. Professional Learning and Development                                                           Program:
                                                                                                         • Industry relevance
                                                       Program: supports initiatives that promote the                                                     Course and Program Development
                                                       scholarship of learning and teaching by                                                             • Dual sector qualifications
                                                       giving staff the opportunity to participate in                                                      • Indigenous programs
                                                       the following programs:                                                                             • RMIT Vietnam
                                                            • Learning and Teaching Fellowship                                                             • Industry relevance
                                                            • Graduate Certificate in Tertiary
                                                                Teaching and Learning.                                                                    New ways of learning
                                                                                                                                                          • Global Passport
                                                                                                                                                          • Work Integrated Learning
                                                                                                                                                          • E-learning
                                                                                                                                                          • Teaching large classes
                                                                                                                                                          • Assessment and feedback on
                                                                                                                                                            student work
                                                                                                                                                          • Multidisciplinary project based
                                                                                                                                                            approaches to learning




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                   6
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                                     5. Organisational Unit Reviews by Institution

                                                                  Frequency/ When      Who and/or what          How is it assessed?              Purpose                       Who is responsible? For evaluation &/or action plans           What is publicly          Implications/ Effects
                                                                                       assesses? Eg Head of     Eg criteria standard             Eg subject review, rewrite,                                                                  available ?               eg changes recommended, new policy
                                                                                       School and Student                                        promotion opportunity                                                                        Eg processes, results,    adopted, even if its just that a report is
                                                                                       Evaluation                                                                                                                                             etc avail online          written
                                                                  A 7 yr cyclical      The review is an         The review process includes:     The Review Panel reviews      The Review Panel prepares its external assessment and          Not directly publicly     The PVC/VP Resources supports the
                                                                  review process:      external and internal    - a self assessment by the       the performance and           report by reviewing a self assessment provided by the          available external to     Exec Mgr in the review process and
                                                                  Each School and      evaluation of the        School or Service area           quality of a School or        School/Service area, together with a range of support          the RMIT environment.     development of the response to the
                                                                  Support area is to   management and           - a 2-3 day visit by the         Service area’s activities     documentation as described below, and interviews a range                                 Review Panel Report and the
                                                                  be reviewed at       operation of each        external review panel,           against its own goals and     of stakeholders.                                                                         development of the action plan.
                                                                  least once each      School/ Service area     concluding with feedback on      against those set out in                                                                     Internally, the RMIT
                                                                  seven years; more    according to an agreed   the panel’s main findings        RMIT’s strategic and          Data provided includes:                                        Planning Quality          The VCE provides support for the
                                                                  frequently at the    schedule.                - a formal written report with   business plans.               For Schools:                                                   Review website            School/Service area/ Review Panel to
                                                                  discretion of the                             commendations and                                              -Strategic Planning and Direction                              (coordinated by the       undertake the review process.
                                                                  DVC (A).             An external Review       recommendations, provided                                      -Learning and Teaching                                         Quality Consultancy
                               What is actually being reviewed?




                                                                                       Panel, chaired by a      eight weeks after the visit                                    -Research and Research Training                                Unit) has:                The DVC (A) approves the annual
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                       Council member and       - development of an action                                     -Student Experience and Outcomes                               - organisational review   schedule of organisational reviews and
                                    School or Service area




                                                                                       managed by the Policy    plan detailing strategies to                                   -Internationalisation                                          guidelines;               establishes relevant review panels. The
                                                                                       and Planning Group,      address recommendations                                        -Governance and Staffing                                       -support & resources;     DVC (A) also presents the summary of
                                                                                       conducts each review.    - regular monitoring of the                                    -Resource Management                                           -the review schedules     the final Review Panel Report and the
                                                                                                                action plan by VCE, and                                                                                                       (2007-2011);              Action Plan to the VCE & Academic
                                                                                                                annual reporting to Council.                                   For Service areas:                                             -Panel Review Reports     Board for consideration of matters
                                                                                                                                                                               -Strategic Planning and Direction                              & Action Plans (2004      identified in the review.
                                                                                                                The review report is sent to                                   -Support for Teaching and Learning, Research,                  +)
                                                                                                                the DVC (A), the relevant                                      Internationalisation, Student Experience and Outcomes                                    The Review Panel Report and Action Plan
                                                                                                                PVC and the Head of School                                     -Client/Stakeholder Feedback                                                             raises/addresses three levels of
                                                                                                                or the Service area.                                           -Governance and Staffing                                                                 recommendation: university level;
                                                                                                                                                                               -Resource Management                                                                     Portfolio level; and School/Services area
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        level.
                                                                                                                                                                               The Executive Manager (HoS or Director) coordinates and
                                                                                                                                                                               manages the overall organisational review process within                                 The Quality Consultancy Unit coordinates
                                                                                                                                                                               the School/ Service area including: coordination of the self                             the monitoring of the Action Plan process,
                                                                                                                                                                               assessment; prepares a response to the final Report by the                               which includes providing an annual report
                                                                                                                                                                               Review Panel; and coordinates the development of the                                     to Council each December that
                                                                                                                                                                               action plan and facilitates the communication of the review                              summarises progress against
                                                                                                                                                                               process and outcomes to staff.                                                           recommendations. Reporting on progress
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        continues until recommendations are met/
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        or no longer deemed relevant due to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        changed circumstances and signed off by
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        the relevant PVC/VPR




                                       RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   7
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                                                                 6. Curriculum Review by Institution

                                                                                   Frequency/ When          Who and/or what            How is it assessed?                  Purpose                             Who is responsible? For evaluation             What is publicly available?          Implications/ Effects
                                                                                                            assesses? Eg Head of       Eg criteria standard                 Eg subject review, rewrite,         &/or action plans                              Eg processes, results, etc avail     eg changes recommended, new policy
                                                                                                            School and Student                                              promotion opportunity                                                              online                               adopted, even if its just that a report is
                                                                                                            Evaluation                                                                                                                                                                              written
                                                                                   The Program Quality      The PAR is produced by     Three key areas of criteria          The objectives of the PQA           Reporting of Program Review                    Program Annual Review for TAFE       Review is a year long process, with
                                                                                   Assurance (PQA) is       the relevant Program       measures are used to evaluate        Policy are:                         Outcomes                                       and HE Coursework Programs           involvement by staff at all levels. The
                                                                                   applied over a yearly    leaders/ managers/         programs:                            1. The approach aims to:            3.1 The Head of School (HoS) meets             Policy and Procedures:               PAR is the key document that
                                                                                   cycle to all RMIT        coordinators in            • Program Quality;                       • be thoughtful and             with the DVC (A) and academic PVC,             http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=f   provides an overview of key issues,
                                                                                   TAFE & HE award          consultation with          • Program Viability;                         critical                    and Dean (Academic Development) as             vcllhr7v71i1                         trends and priorities for action.
                                                                                   coursework               Discipline Head & HoS.     • Program Relevance.                     • involve staff at all levels   appropriate, to discuss key issues,
                                                                                   programs. (PQA                                                                                   of responsibility           trends, implications for profile and any       http://mams.rmit.edu.au/hzv96sygt
                                                                                   Policy for TAFE and      The HoS reviews all        A new section will be added to           • take account of               recommendations for improvement.               h4cz.pdf                             The identification of a need to
                                                                                   HE Coursework            PARs and produces a        the PAR template for offshore                significant                                                                                                     change/amend/ major renewal a
                                                                                   programs; 2006).         summary school report      programs that will ask Program               developments which          3.2 Issues identified are referred by the                                           program or part of it, may be one
                                                                                                            for discussion with the    Coordinator to also look at                  impact on programs          DVC (A) tot the appropriate level              For Program Annual Review            example of a result of the curriculum
                               What is actually being reviewed eg unit, program,




                                                                                   The key outcome of       DVC (A) and portfolio      compliance wit the contract for          • be rigorous.                  (portfolio, central service area) for action   procedure and support (incl PAR      review process. Such a decision
                                                                                   program annual           leadership team.           that offering in addition to the                                         and noting through Policy and Programs         template) documents visit:           would lead to undertaking the
                                                                                   review is the                                       above criteria (May 2008). The       2. Ongoing responsibility for       Committee.                                     http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=f   processes under the RMIT’s program
                                                                                   development of a         Availability of relevant   intention is to also involve the     program quality is embedded in                                                     vcllhr7v71i1                         and approval process for HE
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                   university-wide          program performance        partner in the quality               management practice.                3.3 Outcomes are communicated back                                                  coursework programs. This includes
                                                                                   workplan, drawing on     data to the Program        improvement action planning.                                             to the Head of School or PVC (A)               Guidelines for Program and           new program proposals and renewal
                                                                                   individual program       Leaders/managers/coord                                          3. Systematic review and            through Policy and Programs                    Course Management in HE and          processes including minor or major
                                                                                   annual reports and       inators is the                                                  external re-accreditation (where    Committee. They are also                       TAFE                                 change/amendments to a program.
                                                   Programs




                                                                                   meetings between         responsibility of the      The PAR template:                    required) provide an opportunity    communicated back to the DAD.                  http://mams.rmit.edu.au/d6s00uqfy    See url:
                                                                                   the DVC (A), portfolio   Statistics and Reporting   http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;I      for continuous program                                                             7w.pdf                               http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=dmr
                                                                                   staff and Heads of       Unit and the School        D=fvcllhr7v71i1                      improvement that incorporates       [Excerpt taken from: Program Annual                                                 v7tywmgg6z
                                                                                   School. This             Manager.                                                        input from all major stakeholder    Review for TAFE and HE Coursework
                                                                                   workplan sets out                                                                        groups.                             Programs Procedure:                                                                 Program Advisory Committees (PACs)
                                                                                   priority actions to                                 consists of the following                                                http://mams.rmit.edu.au/hzv96sygth4cz.                                              that consist of industry/ community
                                                                                   improve program                                     sections that need to be             4. A tool that assists Schools      pdf]                                                                                members are also to play a key role in
                                                                                   quality and is                                      addressed (as i) Key Issues          and Portfolios make appropriate                                                                                         program development, review and
                                                                                   reviewed twice a                                    and ii) Trends) by the Program       adjustments to the profile: add     The DVC (A) produces an annual report                                               assessment.
                                                                                   year.                                               Lder/ Mgr/Coord:                     places to high quality; relevant    on key issues raised by the PAR
                                                                                                                                       Program Quality Issues;              and profitable programs; reduce     process for the Vice Chancellor’s
                                                                                                                                       Program Relevance; Program           or stop offering programs which     Executive and the Academic Board,
                                                                                                                                       Viability; Work Integrated           are not meeting our standards.      which is provided along with a copy of
                                                                                                                                       Learning; Online Learning; Any                                           the Workplan which consolidates all
                                                                                                                                       Other Aspects of Program                                                 agreed actions.
                                                                                                                                       Operation; and Priorities (for the
                                                                                                                                       following year).


                                                                                                                                       Key performance data used in
                                                                                                                                       the development of the PAR
                                                                                                                                       include measures such as the
                                                                                                                                       CEQ, GDS, GTS, & internal
                                                                                                                                       survey data e.g. CES, SES.




                                                                            RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                      8
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                         7. Assessment Policy and its Applications

                                 Unless otherwise stated, eg Faculty of Law, School of Engineering; the Policy is a University wide Assessment Policy

                               List of Policies                                                            Capstone courses or             Application to/embedded in            Those responsible for ensuring application,            Review/Update process
                                                                                                           similar                         courses                               review etc
                                                                                                           Eg Make own portfolio at
                                                                                                           the end of degree
                               Many of the Assessment and related policies (i.e. academic progress and     Campus LX extends               Assessment operating procedures       Implementation: Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic)      Program Advisory Committees (PACs)
                               appeals) have been recently reviewed or are anticipated to be reviewed in   Blackboard with blog, wiki      outline ways to embed recently        Compliance: PVC (Academic), Associate Deans            which are established for programs consist
                               2008.                                                                       and e-Portfolio capabilties     Academic Board approved               (Academic Development), Associate Directors            of members that draw from relevant
                                                                                                           and is currently being          assessment related policies (e.g.     (TAFE), Heads of School, Program                       industry, professional associations and
                               Academic Progress                                                           trialled (semester 2, 2007)     plagiarism; deferred assessment;      Leaders/Managers/Coordinators, Course                  community. The PACs play a critical role in
                               • Academic Progress – Statute 5.4 (amended Mar 2006)                        to explore innovative uses      supplementary assessment).            Coordinators, Academic and teaching staff.             providing guidance/ advice on program
                               • Academic Progress Policy & Procedures (Aug 2007);                         of these functionalities into                                         Monitoring and evaluation: Quality Consultancy Unit;   development, review and assessment.
                                                                                                           assessment.                     The “Overarching Assessment           Program Advisory Committees
                               Appeals                                                                                                     Principles” (Sept 2001) is a useful   Development / Review of Policy: Deputy Vice            Program Annual Reviews may provide
                               • Appeals Against Assessment Policy and Procedures (Oct 2007)                                               resource to support academic staff    Chancellor (Academic)                                  insights into review of assessment within
                               • The Portfolio Appeals Committee: Regulation 5.4.2 (amended Oct 2007)                                      and leadership to develop                                                                    the context of programs.
Institution: RMIT University




                               • The University Appeals Committee: Regulation 5.4.4 (amended Oct 2007)                                     appropriate assessment. However
                                                                                                                                           this document should be updated to    Appeals: Student Progress Committee (School level);    DVC (A), ARG and Academic Board play
                               Assessment                                                                                                  be inclusive of current strategic     Portfolio Appeals Committee; University Appeals        critical roles in reviewing and updating
                               • Assessment – Statute 5.4; Regulation 5.4.1 (amended 29/10/07)                                             priorities and practices.             Committee.                                             assessment and related policies and
                               • Assessment Operating Policies:                                                                                                                                                                         procedures.
                                    • Assessment Principles (Sept 2001)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Student Feedback Policy and Procedures
                                    • Assessment (General) Academic (1994)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        (e.g. Student Staff Consultative
                                    • Deferred Assessment Policy (Oct 2007)                                                                                                                                                             Committees) also provide insights into the
                                    • Equitable Assessment Arrangement Policy (Dec 2006)                                                                                                                                                review of assessment.
                                    • Supplementary Assessment Policy (Oct 2007)                                                                                                                                                        Visit url:
                                    • Pass by Compensation Policy (Sept 2007)                                                                                                                                                           http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=t0u0kn0
                                    • Plagiarism Policy and Procedures (Dec 2005; minor amendments Nov                                                                                                                                  hxnam;STATUS=A;PAGE_AUTHOR=Ming
                                      2006) and supporting resources (Rules and Practices – dates                                                                                                                                       %20Shu;SECTION=1;
                                      unknown)
                                    • Special Consideration in Assessment Policy (Oct 2007)
                                    • Supplementary Assessment (Oct 2007)
                                    • Student Discipline (1994)
                                    • Moderation and Validation of Assessment Policy (Aug 2005)
                                    • Grades for Awarding Student Performance in a Subject (1994)

                               Visit Assessment, Progress and Appeals webpage:
                               http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=o3xkn73dkzsi;STATUS=A;SECTION=2;PA
                               GE_AUTHOR=Ming%20Shu




                                 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                      9
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                         8. Graduate Attribute Statement and its Applications

                                  Notes: When universities specified, only the undergraduate degree attributes were used If it was not specified, it was assumed that they were attributes for all students graduating, and this would have to apply to
                                  undergraduate students.
                                  Frameworks or Systems in place to help students create their learning portfolio- How do students put their learning together for a program? How is that evidenced Is there an e-space for students to develop a CV?
                                  Similar to a capstone course? Are they moving towards a student portfolio? Eg IT Skills developed in COMP123, Teamwork evidenced by group project in STAT 170. Will it be across all courses or just certain
                                  programs? Of particular interest are broad science/arts courses where learning outcomes from the whole program may be less obvious. Most will probably be blank, (quite prospective- to assist development of the
                                  framework).

                               General Statement                                                     Application to/embedded in courses                                 Assessment in courses             Frameworks or Systems in place to help                   Review/Update
                               (such as 8 dot points and descriptions)                                                                                                                                    summarise their entire learning experience at            process including
                                                                                                                                                                                                          the conclusion of their program                          Those responsible for
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   ensuring application,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   review etc
                               Pre-2008:                                                             Within the program development process, it is required that the    Frequently capabilities are       There is a statement of capabilities within each         Capabilities are
                               RMIT has not had generic graduate attributes. Rather, each            capabilities are identified where each will be developed by the    not directly/explicitly           program which tells students what they will              revisited as each
                               program had its own set of graduate attributes linked to trade and    courses within the program (e.g. in the Program Guide, a
                                                                                                     ‘Capability Matrix’ needs to be attached as part of the program
                                                                                                                                                                        linked to assessment.             need to be able to demonstrate they can do at the        program is renewed, in
                               professional accreditation, and targeted at the needs of industry,
                                                                                                     development and approval process; see                              Assessment is often linked        conclusion of their program of study and how             consultation with
                               professions and individuals’ careers and lives.
                                                                                                     <http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=30pb7tywmgg6z>).                 to learning objectives/           industry, academic and community consultation            stakeholders and
                                                                                                                                                                        outcomes in the course            was carried out to validate that this is, in fact,       validated by employers
                                                                                                                                                                        guides.                           the appropriate capability outcome. These                and students.
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                                                                                          capabilities are program specific.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          At each step of the program development or
                                                                                                                                                                                                          renewal process, the capabilities are
                                                                                                                                                                                                          progressively defined from statement to
                                                                                                                                                                                                          identified capabilities list to where the
                                                                                                                                                                                                          capabilities are developed within the courses of
                                                                                                                                                                                                          the program.
                               2008 and beyond:
                               The recently approved RMIT Learning and Teaching Strategy                                                     Due to this recent development, processes and procedures for implementation are not yet available.
                               2007-2010 has identified the following generic graduate attributes:
                                                                                                     However, initiatives by the Career Development & Employment (CD&E) unit within the Student Services Group will support the intention of generic graduate attributes. CD&E has
                               In summary, RMIT graduates will be:
                                                                                                     designed and delivers (till end 2007) an undergraduate student elective titled Careers That Work. This course (subject) is available to all RMIT graduates and it is a specific optional
                                   •   work-ready                                                    elective for students to build capabilities and prepare for work.
                                   •   active learners
                                                                                                     In 2008, the responsibility for delivery of the Careers That Work course has been transferred to the School of Education and after a thorough review of the course.
                                   •   life-long learners
                                   •   global in outlook and competence                              In addition, CD&E had developed and promotes a number of self-access online resources for students to plug into such as Resume Express, Resume Review service and e-Jobs.
                                   •   culturally and socially aware                                 CD&E collaborated with the Learning & Teaching Development group in an Learning and Teaching Investment Fund (LTIF) project to develop an e-Portfolio which is being piloted
                                                                                                     in 2008. CD&E also collaborates with academic areas to convene and conduct a host of Preparation for Employment Panels for a host of program and discipline areas that brings
                                   •   innovative
                                                                                                     panels of employers from specific fields to talk to students about the world of work.
                                   •   environmentally aware and responsible.




                                  RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                               10
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                   9. Student Experience

 Notes: This table should cover both practices and plans to improve the entire student experience, including the atmosphere and environment. Student equity, engagement, diversity, internationalism may only be
 plans, and not established practices and that is okay and still important to include. Technology and the physical environment are important too, because they are often used as measures of the student satisfaction,
 ie lots of computers or grassy areas=happy students; and these areas are often well-funded and may be better established than the promotion of student diversity.

                               Key Area                          Practices, plans, services etc
                               Promotion of Student Engagement   Student Services Group: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ssg
                                                                 The central group that provides services and support to RMIT students. Key service areas include: campus nurse service; career development & employment; chaplaincy;
                                                                 childcare; counselling services; Disability Liaison Unit; emergency assistance for students; emergency student loans; equity and diversity; housing advisory service; International
                                                                 Student Information and Support; leadership and volunteering programs; legal service; Ngarara Willim Indigenous Centre; Orientation; Scholarships and Finance; Study and
                                                                 Learning Centre; The Hub. The dental service was discontinued in 2006.

                                                                 Student Essentials: http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=x4d78f3rnu3g1
                                                                 The central webpage that connects current students with the RMIT community and university life (e.g. The Fly the university’s e-bulletin for students about news, events and
                                                                 information) including the administrative (e.g. The Hub) and academic (e.g. Learning Lab) support.

                                                                 RMIT Union: http://www.launch.rmit.edu.au
                                                                 LAUNCH is the homepage for the RMIT Union. It offers a range of extracurricular activities and programs in areas of Sports and Recreation and Arts and Culture programs, based
                                                                 at the City, Brunswick and Bundoora campuses. Away from campus competitions and tours are also common activities promoted on its website. Through its activities RMIT Union
                                                                 aims to contribute positively to student experience and enhance sense of RMIT community and belonging.

                                                                 Study Resources: http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=xuhuhx9fm6plz
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                 Provides a central webpage that signals the diverse range of study resources available including Learning Hub (online resource for courses); Library; Learning Lab; RMIT policies.

                                                                 Study and Learning Centre: Learning Lab: http://www.dlsweb.rmit.edu.au/lsu/
                                                                 This Centre incorporates online interactive tutorials to improve student academic skills as well as information about campus services to support student learning and study.
                                                                 The Learning Lab offers support across six key areas: study skills; writing skills; maths essentials; assessment tasks; email service; on campus services; and hotlinks to the three
                                                                 academic portfolios. The Study and Learning Centre also actively collaborates with teachers and academics to embed and enhance approaches to build underpinning student
                                                                 academic learning skills.

                                                                 RMIT LEAD (Lead, Engage, Aspire, Develop): http://www.rmit.edu.au/lead
                                                                 The program provides students with greater opportunities to volunteer and engage with the academic related opportunities such as peer mentoring programs, contributing to the
                                                                 university’s sense of community, leading activities and representing students on formal committees.

                                                                 Student Life: http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/life
                                                                 Provides hotlinks to services for students and opportunities to engage in RMIT community and its activities.

                                                                 Student Charter http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/studentcharter
                                                                 The Student Charter recognises and reflects the diverse nature of the University and its community. It outlines the expectations that students and RMIT can reasonably hold of
                                                                 each other.

                                                                 Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Policy http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies/learningandteaching
                                                                 Policy, procedures, guidelines and practices related to newly approved WIL/Practice placements in HE and TAFE coursework programs.

                                                                 Career Development & Employment (CD &E): Student & Graduate Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/careers/students
                                                                 The unit provides innovative, proactive, responsive and flexible services that support student connections to community and industry. CD&E supports RMIT University’s diverse
                                                                 student population to:
                                                                     • maximise their career development and employability
                                                                     • become active citizens of the university and the broader global community.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                      11
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   APPENDIX A



                                                                                                  9. Student Experience …cont’d.

            Promotion of Student Diversity   Student Services Group: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ssg
            (This row may overlap with       RMIT offers a range of services designed to assist students in maximising the challenge, reward and enjoyment of university life. Through these services, we want to:
            internationalism and equity)     facilitate positive student experiences at RMIT; support the academic, personal and career development of students; assist all RMIT staff to create an atmosphere of encouragement and fairness
                                             for all students throughout the University; offer crisis management support to the University for students and situations. See above for services offered by the SSG.

                                             RMIT Student Union: http://www.su.rmit.edu.au/
                                             RMIT Student Union is responsible for students’ Clubs and Societies including national based associations which are strongly supported by International students and open to local students from
                                             specific cultural backgrounds. These groups aim to bring International students in touch with local students from similar cultural or religious backgrounds e.g. Singapore Students Association,
                                             Islamic Students Association. RMIT Union also advocates for students.

                                             Ngarara Willim Indigenous Centre: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ngarara
                                             The Centre’s staff assists with re-enrolments, enrolments, deferments, Abstudy information, scholarships, housing, tutorial assistance and pathways planning. The Centre is also a friendly
                                             environment for study and support and a gathering place for students. The staff advocate on behalf of Indigenous students on most academic and cultural matters.

                                             RMIT English Worldwide (REW): http://www.rmitenglishworldwide.com/
                                             RMIT English Worldwide is a global English language training and testing business, within RMIT University Australia. It specialises in academic, corporate, industry and government English
                                             programs.

                                             RMIT Chaplaincy: http://www.rmit.edu.au/chaplaincy
                                             Provides pastoral care and supports students’ spiritual and personal needs. Its work involves social justice activities, faith group discussions, celebration of main faith events and the engagement
                                             of a number of part-time chaplains.
            Promotion of Internationalism    RMIT vision and mission: http://www.rmit.edu.au/about/vision
                                             RMIT’s vision is to be:
                                                •    Global in outlook and action, offering our students and staff a global passport to learning and work.
                                                •    Urban in orientation and creativity, reflecting and shaping the city of the 21st century.
                                                •    The first choice provider of work-relevant learning in Australia, preparing students for professions and vocations of the future .
                                                •    One of Australia’s top research universities, internationally known for our applied focus and for excellence in research and research education in our chosen fields.
                                             Mission
                                             RMIT is a global university of technology with its heart in the city of Melbourne. We create and disseminate knowledge to meet the needs of industry and community and foster in students the skills
                                             and passion to contribute to and engage with the world.

                                             RMIT2010: Designing the Future Strategic Plan: http://mams.rmit.edu.au/wkxbw15ps86fz.pdf
                                             Concept of ‘global passport’ is established as Priority One:
                                             Build a global university grounded in Melbourne and connected to communities, enterprises and industry across the world, providing our students with a global passport to learning and work.

                                             Information & Services to support International Students: http://www.rmit.edu.au/international
                                             International Services provides information for /about: current and prospective international students; industry and community partners; international projects. The unit also arranges for education
                                             abroad experiences for local students and is responsible for the promotion of the student mobility agenda in the university.

                                             International Student Information and Support: (ISIS) http://www.rmit.edu.au/isis
                                             ISIS is a central point of contact for current international students. ISIS staff provide personalised guidance and advice on international student issues in confidential consultations. ISIS also
                                             designs and conducts a range of activities to support International students to become familiar with their new environment and culture and to meet other students, especially local students, and to
                                             get involved in University life. For example: Online mentoring program for incoming International students conducted by trained mentors who are regularly International students in Yrs 2 & 3
                                             http://www.rmit.edu.au/isis/mate/; the International Cup Soccer Tournament http://www.rmit.edu.au/isis/internationalcup; and the Survival Skills Workshops delivered in the Orientation program.
                                             http://www.rmit.edu.au/isis/news#_Survival_Skills_Workshops

                                             Overseas Study Tours and Student Exchanges
                                             A range of overseas study tours and exchanges are available to students from different areas such as the RMIT International and the academic portfolios and schools. For example:
                                             Architecture and Design: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ad/landscape-studytours
                                             Business International Study tours: http://www.rmit.edu.au/bus/studytours
                                             RMIT International Student Exchange Partners: http://www.rmit.edu.au/international/exchangepartners
                                             Education Abroad Unit, RMIT International: http://www.rmit.edu.au/international/educationabroad
                                             RMIT International Industry Experience and Research Program: http://www.rmit.edu.au/riierp
                                             Scholarship and Finance Office is also responsible for supporting students with financial arrangements in particular the allocation of government Overseas–Help Loans.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                   12
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX A



                                                                                        9. Student Experience …cont’d.

            Promotion of Equity   Student Services Group: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ssg

                                  Ngarara Willim (Student Services Group) Koori Express: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ngarara/news
                                  To assist prospective students to engage with Tertiary education provides bus transport from regional Victoria to RMIT for Open Day program. Other schemes are also provided by the Centre to
                                  promote equity opportunities for Indigenous students.

                                  Equity and diversity for students : http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/equity/students/
                                  Includes information about: equity admissions; postgraduate commonwealth supported equity places; special entry schemes (SNAP; SEAS; Open Indigenous Access Scheme; Refugee and
                                  asylum seeker access scheme).

                                  Scholarships and Finance : http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/scholarships

                                  Disability Liaison Unit: http://www.rmit.edu.au/disability
                                  Services Available Through the DLU: Assistive Technology; Sign Interpreters; Note Takers; Communication Aide; Participation Assistant; Buddy; Information for Teaching Staff

                                  Disability Discrimination Action Plan 2005-08 : http://mams.rmit.edu.au/eph6l9l565y71.rtf
                                  Policy for students and staff with disabilities is currently being updated

                                  RMIT Student Union http://www.su.rmit.edu.au/
                                  RMIT Student Union has clubs and societies, departments and rooms for diverse/ minority student groups e.g.: women, queer, international students, postgraduate students.
            First Year Programs   Transition and Orientation: http://www.rmit.edu.au/orientation
                                  Transition and Orientation has responsibility for the design, coordination and conduct of university Orientation activities at the start of each academic semester. The program includes community
                                  activities designed to welcome and engage students as well as workshops on essential academic learning skills. The overall program is negotiated with academic Portfolios to strengthen
                                  alignment and flow with Portfolio and program induction activities.

                                  The Transition and Orientation website outlines the programs, support and festivals associated with supporting the transition into university life for first year students and new students to RMIT. In
                                  addition, First year students or new students to RMIT can also register online for the “Know your RMIT: Essential Orientation Information” program/session: http://www.rmit.edu.au/orientation

                                  A diverse range of student mentoring/peer learning activities/programs has been established; many with the support of training of student mentors via the RMIT LEAD mentoring program. For
                                  example:
                                  LEAD for Staff: http://www.rmit.edu.au/lead/staff
                                   The RMIT LEAD Tool Kit for Staff has been developed as a generic model to assist RMIT staff who wish to develop a Peer Mentoring/Peer Assisted Learning program for their students. Peer
                                   Assisted Learning deals with specific learning issues, whereas a mentoring program deals with the socio-cultural aspects of the learning environment.
                                  Student Mentoring and Peer Assisted Learning Schemes (PALS) in the Science, Engineering & Technology (SET) Portfolio: http://www.rmit.edu.au/set/ad/sled/mentoring
                                   A series of student mentoring/ peer learning programs that support students early in their programs within the SET Portfolio.
                                  Business Student Mentor Program: http://www.rmit.edu.au/bus/smp
                                   The Student Mentor Program (SMP) consists of volunteers who have successfully made the transition and are now experienced business students. They are happy to help ALL students settle in
                                   to life as a new RMIT Business student. Whether you are an international student or a local student, full time or part time undergraduate student, we welcome you! We hold events such as day
                                   trips, movie nights, games nights, ten pin bowling and a wide variety of activities throughout the semester. Many students have told us that one of the keys to success is a study/life balance, that
                                   university is not just about studying and going to classes, it should also include having fun and making friends.
                                  Business Student Learning Advisor Mentors (SLAMs): http://www.rmit.edu.au/bus/slams; As a sub unit of the Business Portfolio Student Mentor (SLAM) Program we are permanently located
                                   in 108.9.08 to help students to succeed in your academic studies. Mentors (SLAMs) are volunteer students who are willing to offer two hours per week of their time to help students with their
                                   studies – free of charge.
                                  Blazing a Trail, School of Education: http://www.dlsweb.rmit.edu.au/education/blazing/; An online guide for first year and new students to the School of Education, developed by students for
                                     students.
                                  Student Essentials: Need to know - http://www.rmit.edu.au/students; Familiarising students with services that support students and their study while at RMIT




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                          13
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                   9. Student Experience … cont’d

                               Improve Student Environment             University Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/services
                               (physical)
                               Eg Buildings & Facility Development     Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ssg


                                                                       Property Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/propertyservices


                               Improve Student Environment             University Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/services
                               (technological)
                               Eg ICT, library, wireless internet on   Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/ssg
                               campus,
                                                                       Information Technology Services (ITS) – current students: http://www.rmit.edu.au/its/student

                                                                       ICT Plan to 2010: http://www.rmit.edu.au/its/ict
                                                                       Planning and use of information and communication technology (ICT) is fundamental to quality learning, teaching, research and administrative activities at RMIT. The development
                                                                       of this next RMIT Information and Communications Technology Plan (ICT Plan) to 2010 represents a milestone for RMIT University and its Information Technology Services
                                                                       division.
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                       ICT Plan to 2010 Green Paper: http://mams.rmit.edu.au/jjk0vuf6i57w1.pdf
                                                                       The RMIT University ICT Plan to 2010 is designed to encourage the ongoing improvement of information and communications technology (ICT) in underpinning the activities and
                                                                       supporting the mission, vision and values identified in the University’s Strategic Plan, RMIT 2010: Designing the Future. In particular this plan has been developed to facilitate the
                                                                       provision of quality education and research that meets the demands of both students and staff working in a global environment.
                                                                       The ICT Plan was also developed in support of the University Academic, Research, and Industry plans and identifies the information technology goals, strategies and actions
                                                                       necessary to enable those plans to be implemented. The ICT Plan to 2010 is divided into six goal areas:
                                                                           • Research
                                                                           • Learning and teaching
                                                                           • Global university
                                                                           • Student experience
                                                                           • Staff experience
                                                                           • Sustainability and support

                                                                       This plan recognises the challenge of maintaining a stable ICT environment within Australia’s largest university of technology whilst at the same time encouraging innovation and
                                                                       increasing our ability to respond to changing research, learning and teaching, and administrative requirements. It also acknowledges the need for staff to experiment with ICT
                                                                       versus the students’ requirement for a consistent, informative and easy to use computing environment. The prioritisation of new and emerging ICT requirements through academic,
                                                                       research and administrative groups will be fundamental to the success of this plan, as is supporting fiscally responsible initiatives that will improve RMIT as a whole.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Excerpt from the Green Paper (Dec 2007), page 2
                               Other…?                                 Scholarships & Financial advice, Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/scholarships

                                                                       Legal Advice, Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/legal

                                                                       Emergency assistance for students, Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/students/aboutthehub/emergency

                                                                       Housing Advisory service, Student Services: http://www.rmit.edu.au/housing

                                                                       A Statement on the RMIT Student Experience is under development with an intention that it will be completed by end 2008 (PVC Students)




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                            14
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                    10. Professional Development by Institution

                          This table includes what the institutions are doing to support teaching and learning. This includes teaching and learning centres (at institution, and faculty level where appropriate), Professional Development
                          Centres, Any formal university teaching qualifications offered, such as a graduate certificate in higher education, any requirements or expectations of staff in regards to training and development, and any other
                          support offered, such as seminars, workshops, forums, online resources, class observations and reviews.

                          Overview of expectations of academic and teaching staff at RMIT

                          RMIT expects teaching staff at all levels to:
                          • have a commitment to share their field of expertise and its relevance to professional practice or industry roles

                          • improve practice as a teacher through continuing professional development

                          • use a variety of teaching strategies, carefully chosen to facilitate intended learning outcomes including appropriate educational technologies

                          • actively involve students in learning through methods such as problem- or project-based learning, case studies, role play, discussion and debate

                          • provide formative feedback to students on their learning during each course

                          • listen to students and learn from them, and use their feedback to make learning more effective

                          • engage in the scholarship of learning and teaching.

                                                                                                                                            Excerpt from Draft Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010, pp.3-4 (vers to Academic Board Oct 2007)


                                T & L Centre & Faculty Centres (where              Formal Professional Development / Support offered                                           Expectations/ Requirements of Staff
                                applicable) & Prof Dev Centres                     eg Graduate Certificate in Higher Education                                                 eg all new staff to attend 2 day workshop, or all academic staff in teaching positions to
                                                                                                                                                                               attend at least one forum, or complete an online course each semester
                                Learning and Teaching Development Group            Key areas of activity:
                                RMIT’s central learning and teaching support          • Strategic Projects supporting the Academic Plan/L&T Strategic Plan e.g. Learning and   In 2007, RMIT undertook to
                                function. Currently undergoing re-structure that          Teaching Investment Fund                                                                 • develop a mandatory teaching qualification for all new Level A and B academic
Institution: RMIT University




                                will refine its focus.                                • Professional development:                                                                      staff who do not have an equivalent teaching qualification. New staff at Level C
                                                                                              o Learning & Teaching Fellowships                                                        and above, and existing staff, will be encouraged to participate in the current
                                http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=py9k6txqtdh2                 o Grad Cert in Tertiary Teaching and Learning (co-hosted with School of                  qualification offered;
                                                                                          Education)                                                                               • develop an induction and professional learning and development program for
                                                                                              o Open Program professional development series                                           all sessional staff;”
                                                                                      • Learning and Teaching Scholarship
                                                                                              o Learning & Teaching Scholarship Seminar Series                                 Excerpt from Draft Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010, pp. 5 (final draft vers to
                                                                                              o Community of Scholars                                                                                                                   Academic Board Oct 2007)
                                                                                      • Rewards and Recognition
                                                                                              o Teaching awards
                                                                                              o Learning & Teaching grants and projects
                                                                                      • Communication & Dissemination of knowledge & practice e.g. Ed Magazine
                                                                                          http://www.rmit.edu.au/teaching/ed
                                                                                      • Indigenous Education




                          RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                     15
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX A



                                                                                                  10. Professional Development by Institution …cont’d.

                                T & L Centre & Faculty Centres (where                                                             Formal Professional Development / Support offered
                                applicable) & Prof Dev Centres                                                                        eg Graduate Certificate in Higher Education
                                People and Culture                                                                                                                                      Open Program
                                (RMIT’s Human Resources function)       Supporting Professional Development Policy and      PD Network                                                  http://www.rmit.edu.au/pc/openprogram
                                                                        Guidelines                                          http://www.rmit.edu.au/professionaldevelopment
                                                                        http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=ppmh4nhry68y                                                                   Coordinates professional development programs for staff across
                                                                                                                            - an online RMIT professional development portal            the university functions of research, learning and teaching,
                                                                        - support for diverse leave:                                                                                    occupational health and safety as well as customised
                                                                            • Study leave                                   The site is under construction but the proposed framework   professional development via consultancy (Open Program in the
                                                                            • Assessment leave                              of the site includes:                                       Workplace). Sessional staff are able to access Open Program
                                                                            • Professional Experience Program (PEP) leave        • About                                                offerings at the request of their supervisor. The areas include:
                                                                            • Sabbatical leave for TAFE teachers                 • Professional development search                          • RMIT Know How
                                                                            • Research Leave                                     • Resources                                                • Research and innovation
                                                                            • PhD Completion Leave                               • Feedback                                                 • Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                 • Career development.                                      • Leading and Managing
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Safe at RMIT
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Managing in our environment
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Working in our environment
                                                                                                                                                                                            • TAFE
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                                                                        The Open Program identifies a Calendar of Events for
                                                                                                                                                                                        professional development/learning opportunities across the year
                                                                                                                                                                                        and includes a program for staff induction and leadership and
                                                                                                                                                                                        management within RMIT.

                                                                                                                                                                                        The Induction –Discover RMIT for New Staff program
                                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.rmit.edu.au/stafinduction
                                                                                                                                                                                        This is an online resource and incorporates:
                                                                                                                                                                                             • New Starters Kit
                                                                                                                                                                                             • Local induction with supervisor
                                                                                                                                                                                             • Online orientation
                                                                                                                                                                                             • Welcome event
                                                                                                                                                                                             • Campus tour.
                                                                                                                                                                                        People and Culture is currently focussing on enhancing on-line
                                                                                                                                                                                        induction for all RMIT staff (May 2008).

                                                                                                                                                                                        Leadership and management at RMIT incorporates programs in
                                                                                                                                                                                        diverse areas:
                                                                                                                                                                                            • RMIT Management Program
                                                                                                                                                                                            • RMIT Leadership Program
                                                                                                                                                                                            • New Supervisors
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Academic Discipline Managers/Leaders
                                                                                                                                                                                            • TAFE Program Coordinators and Managers
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Diploma of Business (Frontline Management)
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Women and Executive Development
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Association for Tertiary Education Management (ATEM)
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Business Builders.




                          RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                      16
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                  10. Professional Development by Institution …cont’d.

                                T & L Centre & Faculty Centres (where                                                                                   Formal Professional Development / Support offered
                                applicable) & Prof Dev Centres                                                                                               eg Graduate Certificate in Higher Education
                                Portfolio Academic Development units                  Business Academic Development Group                          Design & Social Context (DSC) Learning and Teaching              Science, Engineering & Technology (SET) Academic
                                Each of the three academic portfolios (Business;      http://www.rmit.edu.au/bus/staff                             Academic Services                                                Development Services
                                Design & Social Context; Science, Engineering &       Since the restructuring of the Learning and Teaching         http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=gu5utjm7dvo31                   http://www.rmit.edu.au/set/ad
                                Technology) has a Dean of Academic                    function (2007), the responsibility for Professional         Information and services include:                                Diverse array of professional development resources and
                                Development supported with academic                   Development for academic staff resides predominately              • About portfolio academic development                      support offered to SET academic staff for their learning and
                                development practitioners to support the learning     with the Business Academic Development Group.                     • Academic administration and services                      teaching practice, for example, programs and courses
                                and teaching function within the disciplines of the                                                                     • Admission and selection                                   include:
                                portfolio.                                            Services provided include:                                        • Articulation and pathways                                      • SET Sessional Teaching Staff Catalogue
                                                                                          • Educational design                                                                                                           • Targeted funding schemes (e.g. Action Research in
                                These units complement the work undertaken by             • Professional development                               Further learning and teaching resources/support include:                  Teaching and Learning)
                                the Learning and Teaching Development Group               • Media production                                           • Online learning and teaching and educational                    • Academic Progress Policies and Procedures
                                to advance learning and teaching at RMIT and              • Work Integrated Learning (WIL)                                 technologies                                                      Workshop
                                implement organisational strategic directions             • Web publishing                                             • Development and maintenance of Course Guides                    • Program Leader/ Coordinator workshops
                                embedded in the Academic Plan (2006) and the          Resources include:                                               • Program development and approval
                                Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010.                • ‘Quick References’ on topics eg copyright; course                                                                        Further support services and resources include:
                                                                                                                                                       • Quality assurance
                                                                                              guide writing; interpreting the CES data.                • Improving student experience                                   Key functions:
                                                                                         • News and events.                                            • Professional development and scholarship of                    • Program and course quality assurance
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Program and courseware development
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                                           teaching
                                                                                                                                                       • Resources for learning and teaching                            • Scholarship of teaching e.g. Learning & Teaching
                                                                                                                                                       • Student awards and prizes                                          seminars, Learning & Teaching forums
                                                                                                                                                       • Teaching awards                                                Further support:
                                                                                                                                                       • Sessional teaching support                                     • Students assessment resources
                                                                                                                                                       • Learning and Teaching at RMIT (i.e. link to the LTD            • Student leadership, equity and diversity
                                                                                                                                                           Group).                                                      • Student transition
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Course Guide Writing – examples of good practice
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Exam processes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Program Annual Report Support

                                Information Technology Services (ITS)                 Examples of types of training relevant to academic staff include:
                                Training: http://www.rmit.edu.au/its                  Facilitator-led software training in areas such as: Blackboard training; Course guide outlines; Enrolment Online (EOL); Results Processing Online (RPO); Videoconferencing; Groupwise;
                                                                                      Blackboard Campus LX suite; Blackboard Blog & Wiki; Skillport Training (self paced online training for a number of office software programs).
                                The mission of the ITS Training team is to
                                improve the effectiveness of all RMIT staff
                                through software training.
                                Library
                                The library offers diverse support services for staff and students to integrate student centred learning within RMIT. These incorporate:
                                    • Provision of the majority of resources required for student centred learning, with 700 000 books, and databases holding about 30 million articles
                                    • Management of these resources in ways that appropriately meet the needs of staff for their teaching
                                    • Provision of support for teachers: e.g. directly using a team teaching approach; indirectly, by making resources available when teachers are preparing for their work. A number of Librarians have completed the Grad Cert in Tertiary
                                         Teaching and Learning in order to improve their support skills
                                    • Provision of about 18 000 student contact hours of direct teaching per year
                                    • Provision of study space: enhancing student learning opportunities and enriching the student experience. There are some 10 000 students working daily in RMIT libraries. Over the course of the year, student make about 2 100 000
                                         physical visits and about 5.2 million virtual visits across the RMIT libraries.

                                Furthermore, RMIT University Library provides a number of services and facilities to assist staff in their teaching and research, as well as discipline-based Liaison Librarians for ongoing support.
                                Library services for staff: http://www.rmit.edu.au/library/staff
                                This includes, for example: Learning and teaching support; Online course support; Research support; Trials and pilots; Keep in touch (library liaison and feedback to library).




                          RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                               17
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX A



                                                                                     10. Professional Development by Institution …cont’d.


      Educational Media Group: http://www.rmit.edu.au/emg
      The Educational Media Group (EMG) is part of the Teaching and Learning Portfolio and is committed to supporting and enhancing teaching and learning within the university. EMG assists and advises schools and educators across the
      university in the production of innovative and high quality teaching and learning materials. The EMG provides expertise in multimedia production, graphic design, web development, video production, photography, research and innovation.
      The Copyright Management Service provides practical support and authoritative advice through its copyright permission seeking service and University wide professional development activities.

      Through a working party of the Educational Technology Advisory Group (eTAG), the EMG Manager is currently scoping the possibility for consolidating the communication/promotion of ICT related professional development opportunities
      for RMIT staff.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                        18
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                                          11. Appointment Criteria by Institution

                                              List of criteria needed at each level eg Associate Lecturer (A) to Professor (E), Head of Department.
                                Position                               Education/ Qualifications            Criteria                                                                                                                                                                        Source

                                Level A                                A Level A academic will normally     Teaching and research academic staff (Minimum Standards for Academic Levels: MSAL)                                                                                              RMIT People &
Institution: RMIT




                                                                       have completed four years of         Level A                                                                                                                                                                         Culture’s Classification
   University




                                                                       tertiary study or equivalent         A Level A academic will work with the support and guidance from more senior academic staff and is expected to develop her or his expertise in teaching and research             Standards for Academic
                                                                       qualifications and experience        with an increasing degree of autonomy. A Level A academic will normally have completed four years of tertiary study or equivalent qualifications and experience and             and General Staff
                                                                       and may be required to hold a        may be required to hold a relevant higher degree.                                                                                                                               Positions (updated
                                                                       relevant higher degree.                                                                                                                                                                                              15/01/07)
                                                                                                            A Level A academic will normally contribute to teaching at the institution, at a level appropriate to the skills and experience of the employee, engage in scholarly,           http://mams.rmit.edu.au/
                                                                                                            research and/or professional activities appropriate to her or his profession or discipline, and undertake administration primarily relating to her or his activities at the     nagot0es09e61.doc
                                                                                                            institution. The contribution to teaching of Level A academics will be primarily at undergraduate and graduate diploma level.

                                Position                           Education/ Qualifications          Eligibility for promotion from Level      Promotion Process                    Criteria
                                                                                                      A to Level B
                                                                   Applicants will normally have                                                                                     No specific criteria outlined in the Guidelines for applicants from Level A to Level B (2007).
                                                                   qualifications and/or              Applicant has:                            Academic staff at Level A
                                                                   experience recognised by the          12 months continuous service at       eligible for promotion can apply     Applicants will normally have qualifications and/or experience recognised by the University as appropriate for the relevant
                                                                   University as appropriate for           RMIT (from 31 January 2006 for       to their Head of School (HOS)        discipline area. A position at this level will require a doctoral qualification or equivalent accreditation and standing. In
                                                                   the relevant discipline area. A         2007 applicants only)                upon completion of a doctoral        determining equivalent accreditation and standing, regard is had to teaching experience, experience in research, experience
                                                                   position at this level will           Completed probation at RMIT           qualification, or equivalent         outside tertiary education, creative achievement, professional contributions and / or technical achievement.
                                                                   require a doctoral qualification      A completed doctoral                  qualification and/or experience.
                                                                   or equivalent accreditation             qualification or has equivalent      The simplified promotion             Or if applicant is intending to establish Level B equivalency, then:
                                                                   and standing. In determining            accreditation and standing           process for this level means that    Equivalent Accreditation
                               Promotion from Level A to Level B
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                   equivalent accreditation and            (thereby meeting University skill    applicants no longer submit a full   Applicants seeking to establish equivalency need to submit an application to their HOS and a case (not exceeding two pages
                                                                   standing, regard is had to              base and formal qualification        application for promotion via the    – 11 point type) which substantiates equivalence.
                                                                   teaching experience,                    requirements)                        annual Academic Staff
                                                                   experience in research,                                                      Promotion round.                     Applicants should be able to demonstrate:
                                                                   experience outside tertiary        Reapplication for promotion in the                                                a. contributions which enhance their standing in their respective field
                                                                   education, creative                year immediately following an                                                     b. a substantial track record in research and/or creative activity at an advanced level
                                                                   achievement, professional          unsuccessful application requires         Source: Guidelines for
                                                                   contributions and / or             approval of the relevant Academic         applicants from Level A to Level     Examples of evidence may include (but are not limited to) the following:
                                                                   technical achievement.             PVC. It is important to consider this     B (2007 promotions scheme)                  Professional qualifications and contribution to profession
                                                                                                      when assessing your case for              http://mams.rmit.edu.au/gg6mu8              Teaching experience, including implementation of the Learning and Teaching Strategy
                                                                   Source: Guidelines for             promotion.                                1wrdpq.doc                                  Experience in research, including collaborative work with other RMIT staff in research programs
                                                                   applicants from Level A to                                                                                               Experience outside tertiary education in industry, business or government employment
                                                                   Level B (2007 promotions           Source: Guidelines for applicants                                                     Creative achievement
                                                                   scheme)                            from Level A to Level B (2007                                                         Professional contributions
                                                                   http://mams.rmit.edu.au/gg6m       promotions scheme)                                                                    Leadership in local, state or national advisory bodies or community organisations
                                                                   u81wrdpq.doc                       http://mams.rit.edu.au/gg6mu81wrdp                                                    Technical achievement
                                                                                                      q.doc                                                                                 Publications, presentations or work in progress that indicate a contribution to the area of expertise
                                                                                                                                                                                     Source: Guidelines for applicants from Level A to Level B (2007 promotions scheme)
                                                                                                                                                                                     http://mams.rmit.edu.au/gg6mu81wrdpq.doc

                                                                                                                                                                                     RMIT Academic Promotions website 2007: http://www.rmit.edu.au/pc/academicpromotion




                                              RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                              19
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                                     11. Appointment Criteria by Institution …cont’d.

                                Academic                Education/ Qualifications              University Teaching and Learning criteria          University Research and Scholarship                  University Leadership criteria                                                        Source
                                Level                                                                                                             critieria
                                                        Applicants will normally have          To qualify in this category, a successful          To qualify in this category, a successful            To qualify in this category, a successful applicant must be able to demonstrate
                                                        advanced qualifications (in which      applicant must be able to demonstrate              applicant is expected to demonstrate a high          a high level of leadership competence through:
                                                        case a doctoral qualification or       alignment of teaching practices with RMIT’s        level competence in scholarship and /or                  • evidence of leadership in professional or community organisations
                                                        equivalent accreditation               Learning and Teaching Strategy. Among the          research, including for example:                         • evidence of effective leadership within the University
                                                        appropriate to the field is normally   strategic priorities expressed in the 2006-2010         • research in or related to the discipline
                                                        required) and/ or recognised           strategy are:                                               area(s) of the applicant, multi-            The following are examples, none of which is mandatory, relevant to this level:
                                                        significant experience in the              • Contribution to the student experience                discipline or interdisciplinary research       • activities that have led to an increase in public or professional standing
                                                        relevant discipline area. In                    as expressed, for example, in student          • collaborative research with other                      or recognition
                                                        determining experience relative to              feedback                                           organisations/ educational institutions        • effective involvement in consulting work with the community, industry
                                                        qualifications, regard shall be had        • Provision of online learning materials            • the practice and critique of art and                   and government




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           RMIT Academic Staff Promotion Scheme: Guidelines for applicants
                                                        to teaching experience – in                     and e-learning experiences                         design, including its public exhibition        • the development and maintenance of links with the community, industry
                                                        particular to RMIT or it                   • Dual sector initiatives and/or                    • publications, presentations or work in                 and government that support and contribute to the University’s strategic
                                                        predecessors, experience in                     involvement                                        progress that indicate a contribution to             direction
                                                        research, experience outside               • Accessibility to students                             the area of expertise                          • generation of external resources, including research funds
                                                        tertiary education, creative               • Provision of timely formative feedback            • research grants received                         • active and effective membership and participation in professional




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             http://mams.rmit.edu.au/ij5nwpjt6fwc1.doc
                                                        achievement, professional                       to students                                    • contribution to School and University                  bodies and learned societies
                                                        contributions and /or to technical
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                   • Student-centred assessment practices                  team research                                  • active and effective involvement in the wider community and
                                                        achievement. In addition a position        • Work-integrated learning                          • contributions to the furtherance of                    contribution to external boards, committees, commissions or similar
                               Appointment to Level C




                                                        at this level will normally have a




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Level B and above (2007)
                                                                                                   • Indigenous education                                  RMIT’s uniqueness by work which                      bodies
                                                        record of demonstrable scholarly                                                                   distinguishes the University from the
                                                                                                   • Internationalisation of the curriculum.                                                              • effective administration of a range of functions connected with
                                                        and professional achievement in                                                                    traditional model                                    programs and/ or courses taught in the School
                                                        the relevant discipline area.
                                                                                               In addition, applicants must be able to                 • research into tertiary education from            • effective participation in School, Portfolio or University meetings or
                                                                                               demonstrate a high level of competence in                   the perspective of the applicant’s                   committees
                                                                                               teaching, through, for example:                             discipline                                     • contributions that have provided valuable input to the development of
                                                                                                   • teaching which can be regarded as                 • recruitment of other RMIT staff to                     the University’s strategic plan and to Portfolio implementation plans
                                                                                                        genuinely innovative                               research programs                              • contributions that have provided valuable input to the University’s
                                                                                                   • responsiveness to student feedback/               • integration of knowledge including:                    Teaching and Learning Strategy and /or contributions to key initiatives
                                                                                                        peer reviews                                        o the development of novel                          flowing from RMIT’s Research and Innovation Strategy and the
                                                                                                   • improvement of existing award courses                 approaches to integrating new                        Portfolio implementation plans
                                                                                                        and/ or the introduction of new courses            knowledge into teaching programs               • contributions that have enhanced cross portfolio and cross sectoral
                                                                                                   • effective participation in course teams                o contribution to the formation of                  cooperation in pursuit of corporate objectives
                                                                                                        and program teams                                  productive cross disciplinary linkages         • effective leadership of course and program teams, as program leader,
                                                                                                   • effective contribution to capability                   o integration and validation of                     program director
                                                                                                        based course and program                           knowledge published via the internet           • effective leadership of research teams
                                                                                                        development and renewal.                           or other similarly publicly accessible         • sustained and effective contribution at School level in program
                                                                                                                                                           media in a manner that adds value by                 development, program accreditation and program review
                                                                                                                                                           virtue of its completeness and                 • leadership in industry engagement with the School and its students,
                                                                                                                                                           usefulness and is recognised as such                 development and management of industry advisory committees
                                                                                                                                                           by peers
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • leadership in local, state or national community organisations related to
                                                                                                                                                       • application of knowledge to serve a                    their area of expertise
                                                                                                                                                             useful social or commercial purpose          • leadership of a significant field of scholarship.
                                                                                                                                                             (regardless of whether the work is
                                                                                                                                                             publishable in its own right or subject   Examples of leadership must show the activities undertaken in a leadership role
                                                                                                                                                             to commercial in confidence               and the impact and achievements that resulted.
                                                                                                                                                             limitations).




                                        RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                   20
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                               11. Appointment Criteria by Institution …cont’d.

                               Academic          Education/ Qualifications              University Teaching and Learning criteria             University Research and Scholarship              University Leadership criteria              Source
                               Level                                                                                                          criteria
                               Appointment       Applicants will normally have          To qualify in this category, a successful applicant   To qualify in this category, a successful        To qualify in this category, a              RMIT Academic Staff Promotion Scheme:
                               to Level D        advanced qualifications (in which      must be able to demonstrate alignment of              applicant must be able to demonstrate a          successful applicant must be able to        Guidelines for applicants
                                                 case a doctoral qualification or       teaching practices with RMIT’s Learning and           significant record of research and/or            demonstrate a very effective level of       Level B and above (2007)
                                                 equivalent accreditation               Teaching Strategy. Among the strategic priorities     scholarly achievement, including for             leadership competence through:
                                                 appropriate to the field is normally   expressed in the 2006-2010 strategy are:              example:                                             • evidence of leadership in
                                                 required) and/ or recognised               • Contribution to the student experience              • Research in or related to the                      professional or community           http://mams.rmit.edu.au/ij5nwpjt6fwc1.doc
                                                 significant experience in the                  as expressed, for example, in student                  discipline areas of the applicant,              organisations
                                                 relevant discipline area. In                   feedback                                               multi-discipline or interdisciplinary       • evidence of effective
                                                 determining experience relative to         • Provision of online learning materials                   research                                        leadership within the
                                                 qualifications, regard shall be had            and e-learning experiences                        • A significant role in research                     University.
                                                 to teaching experience – in                • Dual sector initiatives and/or                           projects including, where
                                                 particular to RMIT or it                       involvement                                            appropriate, leadership of a            The following are examples, none of
                                                 predecessors, experience in                • Accessibility to students                                research team                           which are mandatory, relevant to this
                                                 research, experience outside               • Provision of timely formative feedback to           • Continuing and significant                 level:
                                                 tertiary education, creative                   students                                               contributions to the body of                • membership and effective
                                                 achievement, professional                  • Student-centred assessment practices                     knowledge by research and/ or                    participation of accreditation,
                                                 contributions and /or to technical         • Work-integrated learning                                 consulting and/ or by critical                   review and other examining
                                                 achievement. There is a                                                                               analysis of existing knowledge,                  bodies, especially interstate or
                                                                                            • Indigenous education
                                                 requirement for academic                                                                              resulting in published articles in               overseas
                                                                                            • Internationalisation of the curriculum.
                                                 excellence that the applicant may                                                                     refereed journals, professional             • effective leadership of
Institution: RMIT University




                                                 evidence by a major contribution to                                                                   reports, books and other                         significant research and /or
                                                                                        In addition, applicants must be able to
                                                 teaching and/ or and/ or the                                                                          publications from established                    consulting projects by
                                                                                        demonstrate a high level of competence in
                                                 profession.                                                                                           publishing houses                                commission or invitation
                                                                                        teaching, through, for example:
                                                                                            • Teaching innovation and effectiveness               • Research grants received and                   • valuable service on public
                                                                                            • Contributions to educational excellence,                 research successfully carried out,               boards, committees of inquiry,
                                                                                                 for example, by the conduct of seminars               leadership of research teams, and                regional authorities, boards
                                                                                                 on teaching and education, publication                supervision of successful poste-                 and committees of
                                                                                                 of papers and books, the development                  graduate research students                       professional associations or
                                                                                                 of widely recognised teaching and /or            • The award of significant prizes,                    government
                                                                                                 assessment methods, work with state or                fellowships or honours by external          • valuable contribution to
                                                                                                 national committees on enquiries into                 bodies in recognition of scholarship             discipline, professional and
                                                                                                 education, curriculum development or                  and research                                     community activities
                                                                                                 the like                                         • Significant originality and creativity         • valuable contributions to the
                                                                                            • Transfer of knowledge, concepts,                         evidenced in works of art, literary              quality of administrative
                                                                                                 understanding and skill to colleagues,                products, patents, products or                   processes
                                                                                                 clients, groups and individuals with the              industrial and other processes              • effective management of an
                                                                                                 aim of assisting in the achievement of           • Successful application of research                  academic or other unit so that
                                                                                                 established goals                                     or research results to the solution              it contributes to and enhances
                                                                                            • Design and delivery of new education                     of significant problems of relevance             the University’s goals and
                                                                                                 programs and approaches including                     to the community at large                        objectives, which could include
                                                                                                 those which enhance articulation and             • Innovation in the understanding or                  budget management, student
                                                                                                 access                                                presentation of a significant aspect             recruitment, staff development
                                                                                            • Course and/or program coordination                       of a discipline or in the linking of             and facilities planning
                                                                                            • The initiation and development of course                 that discipline to other disciplines        • significant input to the
                                                                                                 and program material                             • Previous appointment at                             formulation and
                                                                                            • Supervision of the program study of                      professorial or equivalent level                 implementation of plans to
                                                                                                 honours students and of post-graduate            • Contributions to the furtherance of                 develop academic or other
                                                                                                 students engaged in course work                       RMIT’s uniqueness by work which                  organisational units, including
                                                                                                                                                       distinguishes the University from                the academic profile (which is
                                                                                            • Effective participation in course and/ or
                                                                                                                                                       the traditional model                            reflected in courses and
                                                                                                 program teams and contribution to the
                                                                                                                                                  • Research into tertiary education                    programs offered) or an
                                                                                                 quality of improvement of programs
                                                                                                                                                       from the perspective of the                      equivalent business plan,
                                                                                                 under the control of the team




                                 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                    21
                                                                                                                                                             APPENDIX A



                            •   Provide effective leadership for          applicant’s discipline                        research and consulting
                                capability based course and program   •   Recruitment of other RMIT staff to        •   successful implementation of
                                development and renewal.                  research programs                             policies and strategies that
                                                                      •   Integration of knowledge including:           result in significant initiatives,
                                                                            o    the development of novel               for example, in the
                                                                          approaches to integrating new                 achievement of social justice
                                                                          knowledge into teaching programs              objectives
                                                                            o    contribution to the formation      •   successful implementation of
                                                                          of productive cross disciplinary              development programs in
                                                                          linkages                                      support of Univeristy/ Portfolio/
                                                                            o    integration and validation of          School goals
                                                                          knowledge published via the               •   valuable contributions in the
                                                                          internet or other similarly publicly          role of course, program,
                                                                          accessible media in a manner that             discipline or other portfolio
                                                                            adds value by virtue of its                 management position
                                                                            completeness and usefulness             •   contributions that have
                                                                            and is recognised as such by                provided valuable input to the
                                                                            peers                                       development of the
                                                                      •   application of knowledge to serve a           University’s strategic plan and
                                                                          useful social or commercial                   to Portfolio implementation
                                                                          purpose (regardless of whether the            plans
                                                                          work is publishable in its own right      •   contributions that have
                                                                          or subject to commercial in                   provided valuable input to the
                                                                          confidence limitations).                      University’s Learning and
                                                                                                                        Teaching

                                                                                                                        Strategy and/or contributions
                                                                                                                        to key initiatives flowing from
                                                                                                                        RMIT’s Research and
                                                                                                                        Innovation Strategy and the
                                                                                                                        Portfolio implementation plans
                                                                                                                    •   contributions that have
                                                                                                                        enhanced cross portfolio and
                                                                                                                        cross sectoral cooperation in
                                                                                                                        pursuit of corporate objectives
                                                                                                                    •   effective leadership of course
                                                                                                                        and /or program teams
                                                                                                                    •   effective leadership of
                                                                                                                        research teams
                                                                                                                    •   valuable contribution in the
                                                                                                                        role of course and /or program,
                                                                                                                        leader position
                                                                                                                    •   leadership in local, state or
                                                                                                                        national community
                                                                                                                        organisations related to their
                                                                                                                        area of expertise
                                                                                                                    •   leadership of a significant field
                                                                                                                        of scholarship.

                                                                                                                 Examples of leadership must show the
                                                                                                                 activities undertaken in an leadership
                                                                                                                 role and the impact and achievements
                                                                                                                 that resulted.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                         22
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                               11. Appointment Criteria by Institution …cont’d.

                               Academic          Education/ Qualifications              University Teaching and Learning criteria             University Research and Scholarship              University Leadership criteria              Source
                               Level                                                                                                          criteria
                               Appointment       Applicants will normally have          To qualify in this category, a successful applicant   To qualify in this category, a successful        To qualify in this category, a              RMIT Academic Staff Promotion Scheme:
                               to Level E        advanced qualifications (in which      must be able to demonstrate alignment of              applicant must be able to demonstrate a          successful applicant must be able to        Guidelines for applicants
                                                 case a doctoral qualification or       teaching practices with RMIT’s Learning and           significant record of research and/or            demonstrate an outstanding level of         Level B and above (2007)
                                                 equivalent accreditation               Teaching Strategy. Among the strategic priorities     scholarly achievement, including for             leadership competence through:
                                                 appropriate to the field is normally   expressed in the 2006-2010 strategy are:              example:                                             • evidence of leadership in             http://mams.rmit.edu.au/ij5nwpjt6fwc1.doc
                                                 required) and/ or recognised               • Contribution to the student experience              • Research in or related to the                      professional or community
                                                 significant experience in the                  as expressed, for example, in student                  discipline areas of the applicant,              organisations
                                                 relevant discipline area. In                   feedback                                               multi-discipline or interdisciplinary       • evidence of effective
                                                 determining experience relative to         • Provision of online learning materials                   research                                        leadership within the
                                                 qualifications, regard shall be had            and e-learning experiences                        • A significant role in research                     University.
                                                 to teaching experience, experience         • Dual sector initiatives and/or                           projects including, where
                                                 in research, experience outside                involvement                                            appropriate, leadership of a            The following are examples, none of
                                                 tertiary education, creative               • Accessibility to students                                research team                           which are mandatory, relevant to this
                                                 achievement, professional                  • Provision of timely formative feedback to           • Continuing and significant                 level:
                                                 contributions and /or to technical             students                                               contributions to the body of                • membership and effective
                                                 achievement. There is a                    • Student-centred assessment practices                     knowledge by research and/ or                    participation of accreditation,
                                                 requirement for recognised                 • Work-integrated learning                                 consulting and/ or by critical                   review and other examining
                                                 leadership/ authority that the                                                                        analysis of existing knowledge,                  bodies, especially interstate or
                                                                                            • Indigenous education
                                                 applicant may evidence by an                                                                          resulting in published articles in               overseas
                                                                                            • Internationalisation of the curriculum.
                                                 outstanding contribution to                                                                           refereed journals, professional             • effective leadership of
Institution: RMIT University




                                                 teaching and/ or research and/ or                                                                     reports, books and other                         significant research and /or
                                                                                        In addition, applicants must be able to
                                                 the profession..                                                                                      publications from established                    consulting projects by
                                                                                        demonstrate a high level of competence in
                                                                                        teaching, through, for example:                                publishing houses                                commission or invitation
                                                                                            • Teaching innovation and effectiveness               • Research grants received and                   • valuable service on public
                                                                                            • Contributions to educational excellence,                 research successfully carried out,               boards, committees of inquiry,
                                                                                                 for example, by the conduct of seminars               leadership of research teams, and                regional authorities, boards
                                                                                                 on teaching and education, publication                supervision of successful poste-                 and committees of
                                                                                                 of papers and books, the development                  graduate research students                       professional associations or
                                                                                                 of widely recognised teaching and /or            • The award of significant prizes,                    government
                                                                                                 assessment methods, work with state or                fellowships or honours by external          • valuable contribution to
                                                                                                 national committees on enquiries into                 bodies in recognition of scholarship             discipline, professional and
                                                                                                 education, curriculum development or                  and research                                     community activities
                                                                                                 the like                                         • Significant originality and creativity         • valuable contributions to the
                                                                                            • Transfer of knowledge, concepts,                         evidenced in works of art, literary              quality of administrative
                                                                                                 understanding and skill to colleagues,                products, patents, products or                   processes
                                                                                                 clients, groups and individuals with the              industrial and other processes              • effective management of an
                                                                                                 aim of assisting in the achievement of           • Successful application of research                  academic or other unit so that
                                                                                                 established goals                                     or research results to the solution              it contributes to and enhances
                                                                                            • Design and delivery of new education                     of significant problems of relevance             the University’s goals and
                                                                                                 programs and approaches including                     to the community at large                        objectives, which could include
                                                                                                 those which enhance articulation and             • Innovation in the understanding or                  budget management, student
                                                                                                 access                                                presentation of a significant aspect             recruitment, staff development
                                                                                            • Course and/or program leadership and                     of a discipline or in the linking of             and facilities planning
                                                                                                 coordination                                          that discipline to other disciplines        • significant input to the
                                                                                            • Effective participation in course and/ or           • Previous appointment at                             formulation and
                                                                                                 program teams and leadership in the                   professorial or equivalent level                 implementation of plans to
                                                                                                 quality improvement of programs under            • Contributions to the furtherance of                 develop academic or other
                                                                                                 the control of the team                               RMIT’s uniqueness by work which                  organisational units, including
                                                                                            • Provide effective leadership for                         distinguishes the University from                the academic profile (which is
                                                                                                 capability based course and program                   the traditional model                            reflected in courses and
                                                                                                 development and renewal                          • Research into tertiary education                    programs offered) or an
                                                                                                                                                       from the perspective of the                      equivalent business plan,
                                                                                            • Effective participation in the




                                 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                    23
                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX A



                                implementation of the Teaching and           applicant’s discipline                         research and consulting
                                Learning Strategy                        •   Recruitment of other RMIT staff to         •   successful implementation of
                            •   Initiation and development of course         research programs                              policies and strategies that
                                and/or program material                                                                     result in significant initiatives,
                            •   Supervision of the program of study of                                                      for example, in the
                                honours students and of postgraduate     •   Integration of knowledge including:            achievement of social justice
                                students engaged in course work.               o    the development of novel                objectives
                                                                             approaches to integrating new              •   successful implementation of
                                                                             knowledge into teaching programs               development programs in
                                                                               o    contribution to the formation           support of University/ Portfolio/
                                                                             of productive cross disciplinary               School goals
                                                                             linkages                                   •   valuable contributions in the
                                                                               o    integration and validation of           role of course, program,
                                                                             knowledge published via the                    discipline or other portfolio
                                                                             internet or other similarly publicly           management position
                                                                             accessible media in a manner that         •    contributions that have
                                                                             adds value by virtue of its                    provided valuable input to the
                                                                             completeness and usefulness and                development of the
                                                                             is recognised as such by peers                 University’s strategic plan and
                                                                         •   application of knowledge to serve a            to Portfolio implementation
                                                                             useful social or commercial                    plans
                                                                             purpose (regardless of whether the        •    contributions that have
                                                                             work is publishable in its own right           provided valuable input to the
                                                                             or subject to commercial in                    University’s Learning and
                                                                             confidence limitations).                       Teaching Strategy and/or
                                                                                                                            contributions to key initiatives
                                                                                                                            flowing from RMIT’s Research
                                                                                                                            and Innovation Strategy and
                                                                                                                            the Portfolio implementation
                                                                                                                            plans
                                                                                                                       •    contributions that have
                                                                                                                            enhanced cross portfolio and
                                                                                                                            cross sectoral cooperation in
                                                                                                                            pursuit of corporate objectives
                                                                                                                       •    effective leadership of course
                                                                                                                            and /or program teams
                                                                                                                       •    effective leadership of
                                                                                                                            research teams
                                                                                                                       •    valuable contribution in the
                                                                                                                            role of course and /or program,
                                                                                                                            leader position
                                                                                                                       •    leadership in local, state or
                                                                                                                            national community
                                                                                                                            organisations related to their
                                                                                                                            area of expertise
                                                                                                                       •    leadership of a significant field
                                                                                                                            of scholarship.

                                                                                                                    Examples of leadership must show the
                                                                                                                    activities undertaken in an leadership
                                                                                                                    role and the impact and achievements
                                                                                                                    that resulted.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                             24
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX A



                                                                                                                         12. Review of Staff by Institution

                               Academic Staff Status        Cycle for performance management                      Responsibility &           Criteria or brief summary of process                                 Source
                                                                                                                  involvement in review/
                                                                                                                  performance
                                                                                                                  management process
                               Probation: Academic Staff    Minimum probation period: 1 yr                        Supervisor (eg Program     Induction and first week of beginning work involves orientation to   Recruitment and Selection RMIT website has
                               continuing or fixed term     Maximum probation period: 3 yrs including any         Coordinator or Leader)     RMIT’s policies, processes, functions and campuses as well as        related policy, procedures, guidelines and
                               appointment of 2 years or    extensions of probationary period, as specified in    with Employee and final    the discussion of position responsibilities and expectations.        templates related to recruitment and selection of
                               more                         the employee’s contract of employment                 probation meeting                                                                               RMIT staff:
                                                                                                                  involves confirmation of   Regular review meetings are opportunities to discuss employee        http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies/hr/re
                                                            Probation period    Review Meetings intervals         decision by Delegated      “performance against expectations, review progress and provide       cruitmentandselection
                                                            1 yr                3, 6, & 9 months                  Authority (eg Head of      feedback, any arising problems or concerns, and professional
                                                            2 yr                3, 6, 12, 18 & 21 months          School).                   development needs. These meetings will form the basis of             Policy on Recruitment and Selection, which
                                                            3 yr                3, 6, 12, 18, 24, 30 & 33 mths                               developing …[the] workplan. Perferably, the workplan must be         includes provisions for probation:
                                                                                                                                             finalised within four weeks of employment.” Supporting New           http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies/hr/re
                                                                                                                                             Staff for Success: Induction and Probation at RMIT, p. 5.            cruitmentandselection

                                                                                                                                             For continuing Academic Level A and Level B employees, in            Recruitment and selection guidelines:
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                             addition to performance, a criterion of probation is the             “Supporting New Staff for Success: Induction
                                                                                                                                             successful completion of the RMIT’s Graduate Certificate in          and Probation at RMIT”
                                                                                                                                             Tertiary Teaching and Learning or its equivalent. Supporting         http://mams.rmit.edu.au/jn6lerh23i7e.doc
                                                                                                                                             New Staff for Success: Induction and Probation at RMIT, p. 11.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This document provides guidance to supervisor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  and employee of probation processes and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  expectations.

                               Probation: Academic Staff    Probation period set in consideration of the nature   Supervisor with                                                                                 Policy on Recruitment and Selection, which
                               appointments less than 2     of the position and the entire circumstances of the   employee                                                                                        includes provisions for probation:
                               years                        employment                                                                                                                                            http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies/hr/re
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  cruitmentandselection


                               Academic staff: continuing   Annual cycle with expectations of 3 meetings          Supervisor with            Meeting 1: at beginning of year to confirm workplans;                RMIT webpage for policies, procedures,
                               or fixed term                within the year.                                      employee                   Meeting 2: middle of year to provide mid year/ ongoing feedback      guidelines and templates for managing
                                                                                                                                             and development;                                                     performance of academic staff can be accessed,
                                                                                                                                             Meeting 3: end of year to review performance and begin               under ‘Managing Performance’ at:
                                                                                                                                             discussions for planning for the following year                      http://www.rmit.edu.au/governance/policies/hr

                                                                                                                                             For workplans, see Workload Distribution and Management              Policy and Procedure: Managing for
                                                                                                                                             Guidelines and Academic Staff Workplan template (under               Performance
                                                                                                                                             “Practices” of the Management Performance website).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Workload Distribution and Management
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Guidelines
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Academic Staff Workplan template




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  25
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            APPENDIX A



                                                                       13. Awards and Grants to recognise Teaching Excellence and Innovative Programs that support Student Learning

 Included in this table are the awards and grants given by individual institutions in support or recognition of their teaching excellence. This also includes research supervision, awards for general and sessional staff,
 and awards for programs, services and innovations.

 RMIT University Teaching Awards website: http://www.rmit.edu.au/teachingawards
 This table relates to the 2007 program and includes teaching and learning related awards that are available to RMIT Higher Education (HE) staff (i.e. does not include TAFE only teaching and learning related
 awards)

                               Number              Award              Receive                      Eligible                                                   Criteria               Nomination          Committee                 Obligations
                               How many are        The title of the   A certificate, grant,        For how long are winners ineligible? Are general staff     Whether the            Who can nominate?   Who is on the             Of winners, do they
                               given out each      award              citation, plaque etc         eligible? How many years service to the uni is required    criteria is Carrick                        committee that decides    need to give a speech,
                               year/ semester                                                      to become eligible?                                        based, whether                             the winner? If the        run workshops etc
                                                                                                                                                              standards are used                         process involves more
                                                                                                                                                                                                         than one stage, who is
                                                                                                                                                                                                         on each committee?

                               Up to 2 awards      Category A         Award Certificate and        Individuals and teams;                                     Carrick                Any RMIT staff or   Discipline based          Winners are invited to
                               per discipline      Higher Education   grant ($3000).               Can apply for only one category per year.                                         student             selection panels          become members of
                               (i.e. up to 2 x 7   Seven Discipline                                                                                                                                      including Professoriate   the Community of
                               awards)             Categories         Certificates of               Discipline Categories are:                                                                           Discipline (Chair);       Scholars; and invited to
                                                                      Achievements are also be      1. Biological Sciences, Health and Related Studies (incl                                             previous award            contribute to the Grad
                                                                      awarded for significant       Agriculture, Animal husbandry, Medicine, Nursing,                                                    winners, Head of          Cert Tertiary Teaching
                                                                      contributions (no grant).     Psychology and Disability Studies)                                                                   School, Student.          and Learning and the
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                    2. Humanities & the Arts (incl Design)                                                                                         Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                    3. Law, Economics, Business and Related Studies                                                      Panels make               Seminar Series.
                                                                                                    4. Physical Sciences and Related Studies (incl                                                       recommendations and
                                                                                                    Architecture, Building and Planning, Engineering,                                                    the Vice Chancellor       Eligible for relevant
                                                                                                    Computing & Information Science)                                                                     endorses and finalises    Carrick Awards
                                                                                                    5. Social Sciences (incl Ed)                                                                         awards.
                                                                                                    6. Indigenous Education
                                                                                                    7. Priority Area: Team Teaching in any discipline/s
                                                   Category B         This category is rested in 2007-08 to allow staff to consolidate evidence of scholarship concerning teaching
                                                   Scholarship of
                                                   Teaching
                               Maximum of          Category C         Award Certificate and        Individuals and teams;                                     Carrick                Any RMIT staff or   Selection Panel           Winners are invited to
                               one award per       Awards for         grant.                       Can apply for only one category per year.                                         student             consists of Heads of      become members of
                               each of the         Programs that                                                                                                                                         Schools or                the Community of
                               seven sub           Enhance Learning   Certificates of              The seven sub categories are as for Carrick                                                           professoriate member      Scholars; and invited to
                               categories                             Achievements will also be                                                                                                          (Chair) & up to 4         contribute to the Grad
                                                                      awarded for significant                                                                                                            academic staff            Cert Tertiary Teaching
                                                                      contributions (no grant).                                                                                                          including past Award      and Learning and the
                                                                                                                                                                                                         winners                   Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Seminar Series
                                                                                                                                                                                                         Panels make
                                                                                                                                                                                                         recommendations and       Eligible for relevant
                                                                                                                                                                                                         the Vice Chancellor       Carrick Awards
                                                                                                                                                                                                         endorses and finalises
                                                                                                                                                                                                         awards.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                           26
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            APPENDIX A



                                                                     13. Awards and Grants to recognise Teaching Excellence and Innovative Programs that support Student Learning …cont’d

                               Number           Award                  Receive                     Eligible                                 Criteria                                  Nomination          Committee                Obligations
                               How many are     The title of the       A certificate, grant,       For how long are winners ineligible?     Whether the criteria is Carrick based,    Who can nominate?   Who is on the            Of winners, do they
                               given out each   award                  citation, plaque etc        Are general staff eligible? How          whether standards are used                                    committee that decides   need to give a speech,
                               year/ semester                                                      many years service to the uni is                                                                       the winner? If the       run workshops etc
                                                                                                   required to become eligible?                                                                           process involves more
                                                                                                                                                                                                          than one stage, who is
                                                                                                                                                                                                          on each committee?

                               Maximum of       Category E             Award Certificate and       Early career academics are defined       Critieria 1-4 will be given equal         Any RMIT staff or   Selection Panel          Winners are invited to
                               two awards       Early Career           grant ($3000).              as those academic staff who have         consideration by the Selection Panel.     student             consists of Heads of     become members of
                                                Academics (HE)                                     been working in the University           Criteria 5 will be assessed against the                       Schools or               the Community of
                                                                                                   sector for five years and under and      career stage of the nominee.                                  professoriate member     Scholars; and invited to
                                                                       Certificates of             who are either sessional or fulltime     1. Approaches to teaching that                                (Chair) & up to 4        contribute to the Grad
                                                                       Achievements will also be   staff members.                           influence, motivate and inspire                               academic staff           Cert Tertiary Teaching
                                                                       awarded for significant                                              students.                                                     including past Award     and Learning and the
                                                                       contributions (no grant).                                            2. Development of curricula and                               winners                  Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                                                            resources that reflect a command of                                                    Seminar Series. They
                                                                                                                                            the field.                                                    Panels make              are also invited to
                                                                                                                                            3. Approaches to assessment and                               recommendations and      become a member of
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                            feedback that foster independent                              the Vice Chancellor      the University’s Policy
                                                                                                                                            learning.                                                     endorses and finalises   and Planning
                                                                                                                                            4. Respect and support for the                                awards.                  Committee.
                                                                                                                                            development of students as
                                                                                                                                            individuals.                                                                           Eligible for relevant
                                                                                                                                            5. Scholarly activities that have                                                      Carrick Awards.
                                                                                                                                            influenced and enhanced learning and
                                                                                                                                            teaching.
                               Maximum of       Category F             Award Certificate & grant   This award category is for academic      Criteria 1-4 will be given equal          Any RMIT staff or   Selection Panel          Winners are invited to
                               one award.       Outstanding            ($3000)                     sessional staff who teach at RMIT        consideration by the Award selection      student             consists of Heads of     become members of
                                                Sessional Teaching                                 under one or more of the following       panel. Criteria 5 will be assessed                            Schools or               the Community of
                                                Awards (HE)            Certificates of             circumstances. A HE sessional staff:     according to how much capacity a                              professoriate member     Scholars; and invited to
                                                                       Achievements will also be   - who teach a full semester &            sessional staff may have to engage in                         (Chair) & up to 4        contribute to the Grad
                                                                       awarded for significant     sequential semester per year;            scholarly activities.                                         academic staff           Cert Tertiary Teaching
                                                                       contributions (no grant).   - who teach one semester per year,       1. Approaches to teaching that                                including past Award     and Learning and the
                                                                                                   but not necessarily sequential           influence, motivate and inspire                               winners                  Learning and Teaching
                                                                                                   semesters                                students.                                                                              Seminar Series.
                                                                                                   - who teach at least 6/13 weeks per      2. Development of curricula and                               Panels make
                                                                                                   semester (subject to staff being able    resources that reflect a command of                           recommendations and
                                                                                                   to provide sufficient evidence for the   the field.                                                    the Vice Chancellor
                                                                                                   selection criteria)                      3. Approaches to assessment and                               endorses and finalises
                                                                                                   - in leadership roles (such as course    feedback that foster independent                              awards.
                                                                                                   coordinators)                            learning.
                                                                                                   - in tutoring roles.                     4. Respect and support for the
                                                                                                                                            development of students as
                                                                                                                                            individuals.
                                                                                                                                            5. Scholarly activities that have
                                                                                                                                            influenced and enhanced learning and
                                                                                                                                            teaching.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                           27
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              APPENDIX A



                                                                    13. Awards and Grants to recognise Teaching Excellence and Innovative Programs that support Student Learning …cont’d

                               Number           Award                 Receive                 Eligible                                  Criteria                                  Nomination               Committee                 Obligations
                               How many are     The title of the      A certificate, grant,   For how long are winners ineligible?      Whether the criteria is Carrick based,    Who can nominate?        Who is on the             Of winners, do they
                               given out each   award                 citation, plaque etc    Are general staff eligible? How           whether standards are used                                         committee that decides    need to give a speech,
                               year/ semester                                                 many years service to the uni is                                                                             the winner? If the        run workshops etc
                                                                                              required to become eligible?                                                                                 process involves more
                                                                                                                                                                                                           than one stage, who is
                                                                                                                                                                                                           on each committee?

                               One award        Vice Chancellor’s     Trophy &                All fulltime RMIT HE academic and         Criteria:                                 Self nominate or be      University Selection      Award recipient is
                                                Distinguished         a grant of $20 000      TAFE teaching staff, including            1. Innovation in the design and           nominated by any         Panel chaired by the      asked to be on future
                                                Teaching Award                                Heads of Schools, are eligible for        delivery of curriculum, processes and     member of the            DVC Academic and          VC’s Award selection
                                                                                              this award. Applicants must have          industry engagement.                      University community.    including the Chairs of   panel, involved in L&T
                                                                                              been teaching at RMIT for more            2. Created proven effective links and     There is no nomination   Academic Board, 3         Forums as speaker,
                                                                                              than 5 years fulltime. Past Teaching      teaching activities with colleagues       form but completion of   Heads of Schools, and     University Committees
                                                                                              Award winners, internal RMIT, State       both locally & nationally &               an Expression of         the Chairs of the         and guest speaker at
                                                                                              and National, are all eligible for this   internationally.                          Interest is required.    University Teaching       annual Award
                                                                                              award although being a Teaching           3. Acted as a role model or mentor                                 Awards to select and      ceremony.
                                                                                              Award winner is not a pre-requisite       supporting and fostering the                                       recommend a recipient     Recipient will also be
                                                                                              for this award.                           development of collaborative and                                   to the VC for her         interviewed re practice
                                                                                                                                        teamwork approaches.                                               consideration.            for Teaching Award
Institution: RMIT University




                                                                                                                                        4. Demonstrable commitment to                                                                website video.
                                                                                                                                        research-led teaching, or participation
                                                                                                                                        in research related teaching and                                                             Eligible for Carrick
                                                                                                                                        industry engagement.                                                                         Awards
                                                                                                                                        5. Demonstrated effectiveness in
                                                                                                                                        teaching practice over time as seen in
                                                                                                                                        student feedback from course and
                                                                                                                                        program data, and peer reviews.

                                                                                                                                        Support documents include:
                                                                                                                                        • A concise Appendix (maximum
                                                                                                                                           five pages) containing a mix of
                                                                                                                                           student feedback, evidence of
                                                                                                                                           scholarly writing, research led
                                                                                                                                           activities, or whatever else you
                                                                                                                                           deem appropriate evidence.
                                                                                                                                        • A Current CV of no more than four
                                                                                                                                           pages outlining your educational
                                                                                                                                           qualifications, career history,
                                                                                                                                           teaching positions, and teaching
                                                                                                                                           experience.
                                                                                                                                        • Three, one page, References from
                                                                                                                                           colleagues, internal and external
                                                                                                                                           to RMIT who can address the
                                                                                                                                           criteria.
                                                                                                                                        • A letter of support from your Head
                                                                                                                                           of School, co-signed by the
                                                                                                                                           Portfolio PVC Academic.




 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                             28
                                                                                                                                                                                                             APPENDIX A




Overview of Institutional Context
Since the appointment of Professor Margaret Gardner AO as the RMIT Vice Chancellor and President in April 2005 and Professor Jim Barber as the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic (January 2006), RMIT’s
institutional context has undergone significant change in building institutional capacity for improving learning and teaching. In the initial period, this has involved setting a clear vision and strategic directions to
underpin the institutional change processes. As shown in the audit’s Table 1: Mission, goals & objectives, the place of learning and teaching is established clearly within the current strategic directions for RMIT and
provides the foundational principles for developing the capacity for learning and teaching excellence.

Institutional evidence of increasing support and a greater role for learning and teaching excellence is represented particularly by the Academic Plan 2007-2010 and its companion paper Learning and Teaching
Strategy strategy, which was recently approved by the Academic Board (Sept 2007). These strategic institutional directions support learning and teaching innovation through the creation of the Learning and
Teaching Investment Fund (LTIF). Established in 2007, the Fund financially supports academics to systematically investigate pedagogies of their interest and that are judged as having merit by peer expert panels
and fall within key areas identified as needing improvement within the organisation. Two key areas, Course and program development and New Ways of Learning and their respective themes, have been identified
as priority areas for consideration of the Fund (refer to Table 4: Funding – LTPF and other for details).

Simultaneously, other initiatives during 2007 have aimed to increase the profile of learning and teaching excellence in the organisation. For example, rewarding and recognising the academics who are judged by
students and staff as reflecting quality learning and teaching practices through the RMIT Teaching Awards (refer to Table 13: Awards and Grants). In 2007 the RMIT Teaching Award process has endeavoured to
strengthen the profile of learning and teaching quality to draw upon winners to begin to build an institutional culture that respects and supports the significance of learning and teaching excellence. This objective is
reflected in the establishment of communities of practice such as the Learning and Teaching Scholarship Series and the Community of Scholars where sharing of ideas and thinking about learning and teaching
excellence influences changes in teaching practices. Another example is the policy initiative to support any newly appointed academic (at Level A or B) to acquire a qualification of teaching through the Graduate
Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and Learning unless they have such a qualification or its equivalent (refer to Table 10: Professional Development). In addition the RMIT ALTC funded Leadership Project into
multilevel leadership and student feedback is contributing valuable insights that are influencing learning and teaching advances.

Furthermore, during 2006-2007 the DVC Academic has driven major changes to learning and teaching policy and procedures that are underpinned by the understanding that learning is an active, participatory
process and that the synergy between work and study are intricate to developing learners who are work ready graduates and able to contribute to communities internationally. The new Work Integrated Learning
(WIL) Policy & Procedures are examples of this shift in emphasis. Thus, the recent and anticipated 2008 changes to the organisation’s learning and teaching policies and procedures (refer to Table 2: List of
Teaching & Learning Policies and Plans and Table 7: Assessment Policy and its Application) are institutional mechanisms to engage teaching staff within Portfolios and Schools in moving towards learner centred
pedagogical approaches. Generally, the aims of these learning and teaching policies are to: support active learning; provide a coherent policy framework to support academics in creating learner centred learning
environments; and increase the guidance for, and standards of, learning and teaching quality.

However, the intention to build an organisational culture that values the significance of learning and teaching excellence needs to go beyond establishing institution-lead initiatives and policy development: staff and
students need to engage with them. With the relevant strategic directions, policies and initiatives in place (including those yet to be developed), there is now a need to address how to continue and increase the
engagement of staff and students in Portfolios and Schools to advance learning and teaching excellence. To illustrate simply: as a result of compiling this audit predominantly from the RMIT website, it was
frequently difficult to find information regarding learning and teaching. Often the information was fragmented across the website across several functional units or not located intuitively, particularly from an
academic staff perspective. Therefore, there is a significant benefit for creating a ‘one-stop-shop’ approach where learning and teaching related issues/ support/ policies and procedures etc are located or hosted in
the one area of the website (e.g. The University’s Learning and Teaching Unit) or, if the information belongs to a significant function (e.g. governance, Portfolio Academic Development units, People and Culture,
Information Technology Services, Academic Registrar’s Office etc), they are hotlinked from the central LTU homepage to the relevant function homepages. This type of website presence would at least allow staff
and students to access easily/ intuitively the array of learning and teaching related policies, initiatives, resources and support. Although this is a basic form of staff and student engagement, it is an essential first
step that can be built upon with further appropriate strategies.


Learning and teaching excellence is not static. It is a continuous series of cycles of improvement and learning, with each cycle increasing and deepening our understanding and practices of learning and teaching
through the action of reflective practice, scholarship and research, and leadership. The TQI Project is an opportunity to engage with mapping, monitoring, reporting and evaluating RMIT’s move towards
implementing and institutionalising a culture that respects and values learning and teaching excellence as a critical core activity of RMIT. Particularly important to this TQI Project will be to analyse the institutional
engagement of the change process through the i) interactions among and between institutional units and staff; and ii) the significance and impact of RMIT community working towards advancing learning and
teaching excellence. A way to manage the TQI Project investigation is to draw upon existing institutional reporting frameworks and processes as well as identify significant projects to explore deeply, using a case
study approach.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                            29
                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model




APPENDIX B

                            Response to the ACER Report on the
                              ATN Academic Standards Model




                                Advice and Recommended Actions

                                             December 2007




A response prepared for the Australian Technology Network University DVCs/PVCs (Academic) by Mr Ric
Bierbaum (UniSA) and Ms Josephine Lang (RMIT), Project Managers, Carrick Institute Teaching Quality Indicators
Project.




                                                                                                             30
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                              APPENDIX B
                                                                                                                          Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model




Contents

     MISSION ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 12
1. A CONTEXT FOR ADVANCING LEARNING AND TEACHING QUALITY WITHIN THE ATN ...................................................................................... 33
     1.1         INTRODUCTION ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 33
     1.2         EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ............................................................................................................................................................................................................ 33
2.       AN ATN FRAMEWORK TO ADVANCE LEARNING AND TEACHING QUALITY ........................................................................................................ 35
     2.1         THE ACER APPROACH ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 35
     2.2         THE CARRICK INSTITUTE’S TQI PROJECT APPROACH .............................................................................................................................................................. 35
     2.3         ACER AND CARRICK INDICATORS: A COMPARISON ................................................................................................................................................................ 39
     2.4         AN EMERGING ATN FRAMEWORK ........................................................................................................................................................................................... 44
     2.5         A WAY FORWARD .................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 49
3.       TEACHING AND LEARNING POLICIES AND PROGRAMS IN THE ATN: A COMPARISON WITH LEADING PRACTICE............................... 51
     3.1         INTRODUCTION ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 51
     3.2          LEARNING AND TEACHING PLANS AND FRAMEWORKS ............................................................................................................................................................ 53
             Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities ............................................................................................................................................................. 53
             Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities........................................................................................................................................................... 54
             Comparisons with International universities ......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 54
             Comparisons with the ATN member organisations ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 55
     3.3          LEARNING AND TEACHING POLICIES ....................................................................................................................................................................................... 55
             Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities ............................................................................................................................................................. 55
             Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities’ policies ............................................................................................................................................ 56
             Comparisons with International universities ......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 56
             Comparisons with the ATN member organisations ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 57
     3.4          LEARNING AND TEACHING SUPPORT PROGRAMS ..................................................................................................................................................................... 58
             Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities ............................................................................................................................................................. 58
             Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities........................................................................................................................................................... 59
             Comparisons with international universities .......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 59
             Comparisons with the ATN member organisations ............................................................................................................................................................................................... 60
     3.5          LEARNING AND TEACHING REFERENCES AND RESOURCES....................................................................................................................................................... 61
             Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities ............................................................................................................................................................. 62
             Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities........................................................................................................................................................... 62
             Comparison with international universities ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 62
             Comparisons with ATN Universities..................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 63
     3.6      ATN TEACHING AND LEARNING POLICIES AND PROGRAMS: ANALYSIS AND OPPORTUNITIES .................................................................................................. 63
        3.6.1 Learning from the two international universities and their practice ...................................................................................................................................... 64
4.       ACER ‘ATN ACADEMIC STANDARDS MODEL’ REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS: ACTION PLANS .................................................................... 66
     ACER RECOMMENDATION NO. 5 (PRIORITY 1A) ................................................................................................................................................................................. 67
     ACER RECOMMENDATION NO. 6 (PRIORITY 2) .................................................................................................................................................................................... 71
     ACER RECOMMENDATION NO. 7 (PRIORITY 1B) ................................................................................................................................................................................. 73
     ACER RECOMMENDATION NO. 8 (PRIORITY 3) .................................................................................................................................................................................... 76
5.       RECOMMENDATIONS............................................................................................................................................................................................................... 78
REFERENCES ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 79
CONTENTS ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 81
CONTEXT .............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 82
     THE TEACHING QUALITY INDICATORS PROJECT ................................................................................................................................................................................... 82
     EMERGENT FOCUS ON ASSESSMENT TQI DIMENSION AND THE FORUM INITIATIVE .............................................................................................................................. 82
       The Forum ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 83
FORUM DELEGATES SPEAK ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 85
     DISCUSSION THEME 1: CURRENT UNDERSTANDINGS AND PRACTICES OF ASSESSMENT ......................................................................................................................... 86
     DISCUSSION THEME 2 ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 90
       Overall reactions: comparing RMIT to current HE assessment policy context ............................................................................................................................... 90
             What might RMIT learn from the current HE assessment policy context?............................................................................................................................................................ 91
       Feedback on RMIT’s existing overarching assessment principles and charter ............................................................................................................................... 91
     DISCUSSION THEME 3 ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 93
       Purpose and scope of the assessment manual ................................................................................................................................................................................. 94
       Resources to support implementation .............................................................................................................................................................................................. 94
       Areas to develop assessment standards ........................................................................................................................................................................................... 94
       Priority areas for action: recommendations by Forum Delegates .................................................................................................................................................. 95
EVALUATION ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97
     DELEGATES’ PERSPECTIVE .................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97
       Reflection on Forum Program ......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97
             Introductory briefings session ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 97
             Assessment in University contexts session ............................................................................................................................................................................................................ 98
             Workshop session .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 99
         Reflection on the Forum organisation ............................................................................................................................................................................................. 99
             Pre-Forum Reading Pack ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 99
       Summary ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 100
     EDUCATIONAL CONSULTANT’S PERSPECTIVE ...................................................................................................................................................................................... 101
       Engagement of an external consultant ........................................................................................................................................................................................... 101
       Key observations and advice ......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 101
CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS ..................................................................................................................................................................................... 106
     CONCLUDING OBSERVATIONS ............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 106
     RECOMMENDATIONS ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 106
       Recommended priorities for action in the short term (to December 2008) ................................................................................................................................... 108




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                               APPENDIX B
                                                                                                                           Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

APPENDIX A: RMIT ASSESSMENT STANDARDS PROJECT PLAN....................................................................................................................................... 110
        ALTC Teaching Quality Indicators Project: Overview of RMIT Project Plan for Assessment Dimension [revised 3 June 2008] ............................................... 111
APPENDIX B: THE FORUM DELEGATE LIST ............................................................................................................................................................................ 112
APPENDIX C: FORUM PROGRAM ................................................................................................................................................................................................ 116
APPENDIX D: FORUM PRESENTATIONS .................................................................................................................................................................................... 118
APPENDIX E: THE PRE-FORUM READING PACK .................................................................................................................................................................... 119
APPENDIX F: FORUM NOTEBOOK .............................................................................................................................................................................................. 120
APPENDIX G: FORUM EVALUATION INSTRUMENT .............................................................................................................................................................. 121
APPENDIX H: CONSULTANT’S REPORT ON THE REVIEW OF THE ASSESSMENT STANDARDS FORUM .............................................................. 124
APPENDIX I: FORUM RESOURCES .............................................................................................................................................................................................. 129
SECTION ONE: INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................................................................................................................. 132
    CONTEXTUAL BACKGROUND .............................................................................................................................................................................................................. 132
      Purpose of this inquiry and report ................................................................................................................................................................................................. 132
      Making links to the RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Forum ................................................................................................................................................ 132
      Making links to previous recent work in the area of assessment in the university sector .............................................................................................................. 133
      In summary .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 133
SECTION TWO: ENVIRONMENTAL SCAN OF THE ASSESSMENT POLICY CONTEXT ................................................................................................. 134
SECTION THREE: EXAMINATION OF OVERARCHING ASSESSMENT PHILOSOPHY AND PRINCIPLES ................................................................ 158
        1.1 Purposes of assessment ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 170
        1.2 Effective assessment................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 170
        Intent and objectives ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            Introduction ....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            Purpose of Assessment ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
        Intent & objectives ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            1. The purpose of RMIT assessment in the university is to ................................................................................................................................................................................. 172
            Students of RMIT engage in assessment activity that ......................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            2. encourages student learning and participation ................................................................................................................................................................................................. 172
            3. provides feedback ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 172
            4. is flexible ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            5. is manageable .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 172
            6. is fair and considerate of diverse needs ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 172
            7. is reliable ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 173
            8. is valid and meaningful.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 173
            9. encourages student integration of learning ...................................................................................................................................................................................................... 173
    COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF SECTION THREE UNIVERSITY DATA TABLES .......................................................................................................................................... 174
      The concept of an assessment policy manual................................................................................................................................................................................. 175
      Making assessment philosophy explicit ......................................................................................................................................................................................... 175
      Making assessment principles explicit ........................................................................................................................................................................................... 175
      Key emergent themes in assessment principles .............................................................................................................................................................................. 175
      Analysis and key findings ............................................................................................................................................................................................................... 176
      RMIT’s performance ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 177
SECTION FOUR: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS ............................................................................................................................................... 179
REFERENCES ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 179
ASSESSMENT ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Institutional Vision......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Institutional goals and objectives .................................................................................................................................................................................................. 181
        Goals .............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 181
        Objectives ...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Target student profile..................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Specific issues ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 181
        Student Issues................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 181
        Element .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Institutional level ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Faculty level................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Program/Dept level........................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 181
        Teacher level .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 181
        Measurement.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 181
        Shared/common measurement ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 181
        Curriculum Issues .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 183
        Element .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 183
        Institutional Level .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 183
        Faculty level................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 183
        Program/Dept level........................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 183
        Teacher level .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 183
        Measurement.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 183
        Shared/common measurement ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 183
        Staff and Institutional Issues .......................................................................................................................................................................................................... 185
        Element .......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 185
        Institutional level ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 185
        Faculty level................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 185
        Program/Dept level........................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 185
        Teacher level .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 185
        Measurement.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 185
        Shared/common measurement ....................................................................................................................................................................................................... 185




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                        APPENDIX B
                                                                    Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


1. A context for advancing learning and teaching quality within the ATN

1.1        Introduction
The Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN) DVCs/PVCs (A) received an ATN Academic Standards Model report, prepared by Dr
Hamish Coates of the ACER, in June 2007. This document, “…provides a mechanism for the ATN to continue leadership in the definition,
measurement, monitoring and enhancement of academic standards” (p. 1). The ACER (2007) report presented a thorough overview and
conceptualisation of academic standards and a possible framework to measure, monitor and improve academic practice.

As comprehensive as this report was, it was agreed by the ATN’s DVCs/PVCs (A), that further work was required to translate and improve a broadly
conceptual framework, into a more actionable one. The ACER Report succeeded in providing the ATN with a basis for what could be. What is now
required is a considered and pragmatic response to its recommendations. This paper, prepared by the University of South Australia and the RMIT
University and the initial feedback in the drafting process from DVC/PVCs (A) RMIT, UniSA and Curtin, is presented to the ATN DVCs/PVCs (A),
for consideration and action.

This response is based on the eight recommendations presented in the ACER’s ATN Academic Standards Model (2007) report. These ACER (2007)
recommendations are presented in Table 1.

                               Table 1: Recommendations presented in the ACER (2007) ATN Academic Standards Model report
                        ACER (2007) Recommendation
                        1.  ATN institutions should adopt a consistent definition of ‘academic standards’ as being ‘levels of
                            performance on key academic indicators of educational quality’.
                        2.  ATN institutions should endorse the proposed ATN Academic Standards Model, which consists of a
                            high-level indicator framework, a suite of measures to support these indicators, an approach for
                            gathering data on each of these measures and a series of standards for identifying performance.
                        3.  ATN institutions should produce a succinct plain language summary that provides information to
                            relevant stakeholder groups on the specification, measurement, monitoring and enhancement of
                            academic standards. This could be prepared by individual institutions, or across the ATN as a whole.
                        4.  ATN institutions should implement the ATN Academic Standards Model. This would involve
                            operationalising the model, mapping data elements against defined measures and indicators,
                            managing and analysing data, developing performance measures and reports, and establishing
                            routines for benchmarking and improvement.
                        5.  ATN institutions should develop their capacity to measure and hence assure general graduate
                            capabilities including work readiness. To provide a foundation, a comparable ATN set of graduate
                            capabilities should be defined and embedded into learning and teaching. Assessments should be
                            developed to measure graduates’ capability, which may include routine assessments, feedback from
                            employers, or an objective test.
                        6.  ATN institutions should undertake a systematic and multifaceted review of student assessment and
                            reporting. Such a review could develop ATN capacity to: monitor student input standards, produce
                            validated assessment tasks, develop moderation processes to ensure the equivalence of learning
                            standards, develop comparable curriculum standards, develop common reporting metrics, develop
                            transparent statements of attainment and conduct routine analyses of student performance data.
                        7.  ATN institutions should develop a systematic approach to monitoring and enhancing industry
                            involvement in learning. Institutions might: highlight the important role that employers, industries
                            and working professional play in ensuring the quality of higher education; enhance the formative
                            input provided by industry into educational design, delivery, assessment and review; strengthen or
                            builds relationships with professional bodies; and obtain more systematic forms of feedback from
                            graduate employers.
                        8.  ATN institutions should further develop their approach to documenting and developing education
                            resources. They should design and implement a systematic approach to the production of teaching
                            portfolios and initiate the development of course portfolios.


1.2 Executive Summary
Given that the two projects were undertaken simultaneously and were not integrated, the Carrick Institute’s Teaching Quality Indicators
(TQI) Project is not referred to in the ACER (2007) report. The TQI Project should be carefully considered by the ATN as it has the
potential to significantly shape and be shaped by the respective meanings the Higher Education sector gives to ‘academic standards’ and
‘teaching quality indicators’. Such shared understandings would then not only allow for comparison and benchmarking within the ATN
but also beyond it. Importantly too, if ATN members see the opportunity to influence the TQI framework through analysis of academic
standards they should do so by directing their comments to the two participating ATN universities (UniSA and RMIT).

It is important to highlight that the ACER report adopted a narrow interpretation of ‘academic standards’ as equating to primarily the
teaching and learning roles of academics. Boyer (1990) clearly established that academics performed three other key roles relating to their
scholarship of ‘discovery’, ‘integration’ and ‘application.’ In acknowledging that narrow conceptualisation, this response focuses on
teaching and learning as that is the primary responsibility of the Carrick TQI Project. Further work will still need to be conducted if the
ATN aims to develop a framework that ensures all aspects of academic and scholarship roles are reflected in a future ATN academic
standards model.

The purpose of this response is to stimulate further discussion and action amongst the ATN DVC/PVCs (A) in relation to the ACER
(2007) report on ATN Academic Standards Model. In addition, this response contextualises the recommendations of the ACER (2007)
report with the emerging agenda of the Carrick Institute’s Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Framework. This incorporates a discussion
standards and indicators as represented in the projects and the interdependency of goals between the two projects as well as their different
nuances.

Section Two of this response examines the development of an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching quality. The section
draws chiefly from the ACER’s (2007) Recommendation Nos. 1-4 with alignment to the Carrick Institute’s conceptualisation of the
Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Framework. Mapping the ATN’s mission against the TQI dimensions highlights how the ATN’s vision




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                 APPENDIX B
                                                             Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

and mission are translated into the TQI Framework, which assists in determining a way forward. Finally in this section, a response to the
ACER (2007) Recommendation Nos. 1-4 is presented (refer to Table 7).

Section Three focuses predominantly on learning and teaching related institutional inputs that would contribute to developing an ATN
framework from the perspective of the TQI dimensions of Institutional climate and systems and Engagement and learning community.
These TQI dimensions were strongly represented in the ATN-TQI mapping exercise portrayed in Section Two.

Identifying possible input indicators suitable for an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching involved a comparative
institutional analysis of inputs such as currently active policies, strategic plans, resources and support programs. Such a comparative
analysis supports the TQI dimension of Institutional climate and systems, the quality dimension that underpins the TQI framework. The
institutions for the comparative analysis incorporated ATN members and Australian non ATN high performing universities (University of
NSW, University of Queensland, University of Wollongong and Monash University) and two international universities (University of
Oxford and Harvard University).

Section Four raises possibilities for development of the ATN framework aligned with the ACER’s (2007) recommendations from the
perspectives of the TQI Project and its quality dimensions. In particular, ACER Recommendation Nos. 5, 7 and 8 focus on employability,
graduate attributes and e-portfolio resources and predominantly correlate with TQI dimensions of Engagement and learning community
and Institutional climate and systems. Furthermore, the ACER Recommendation No. 6 deliberates the role of assessment in an ATN
framework, which relates to the TQI dimension of Assessment. The development of an assessment dimension in the ATN framework to
advance learning and teaching quality will include input (e.g. policy and strategic plans at institutional levels), process (e.g. policy
procedures at institutional and local levels) and output (e.g. products of assessment; contribution to development of graduate attributes)
indicators.

The final section of the report (Section Five) summarises the following recommendations for the ATN’s DVC/PVCs (A) consideration
and decision at the December 2007 teleconference.

    1. ATN members adopt the recommendations made in Table 5 for the ACER report Recommendation Nos. 1-4.

    2. If Recommendation No. 1 is accepted then the future focus of this project will be the development of an ATN framework for
       advancing learning and teaching excellence, which would broaden from the initial focus of minimum standards to incorporate the
       aspirational goal of enhancing learning and teaching quality. ATN members should affirm if it is interested in this broader focus.

    3. ATN members should consider the proposed action plans to advance the implementation of report Recommendation Nos. 5-8 (see
       Section Four) to inform the development of an ATN framework to advance learning and teaching quality.

    4. ATN Academic Standards Model development is not contingent upon the Carrick Institute Teaching Quality Indicators Project,
       but it should give close consideration to its developments. It is therefore proposed that any further ‘ATN academic standards’
       developments should give close attention to the emerging Carrick Institute TQI Framework and the associated indicators and
       measures as they have the potential to be interdependent.

    5. PVCs/DVCs(A) are asked to be prepared to respond to and indicate their support and/or priorities for these suggested actions in
       the teleconference in early December.

    6. ATN members should consider whether they want to develop a framework for the learning and teaching activity of academic
       work OR to develop a framework that incorporates all aspects of academic work. If the latter position is taken, then further work
       is required to develop possible indicators to expand the framework across the academic work of learning and teaching, research
       and scholarship, and service and leadership. This latter position is not recommended by the authors of this report because the
       framework will lose its focus and try to be all things to all people.

    7. If there is support for developing a shared ATN framework to advance learning and teaching excellence, a discussion of resources
       (e.g. staff either in kind/secondment to action project; travel between ATN universities; research activity; data gathering and
       analysis) to support moving the agenda forward needs to occur.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX B
                                                                             Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


2.       An ATN framework to advance learning and teaching quality

2.1 The ACER approach
The ACER (2007) report promotes the conceptualisation of a model for the ATN to define and measure academic standards within an
indicator framework to “monitor and enhance academic practice” (p. iv). As argued in the ACER paper (2007, p. 20), indicators of
standards are “most powerful when they are situated in a framework”. Therefore, according to the report, the development of an ATN
Academic Standards Model should encompass three aspects:
    • an indicator framework, which identifies indicators at inputs, processes and outputs phases and across diverse contexts (e.g.
        individual, School/Department/Faculty, Portfolio; institutional)
    • a suite of measures to support these indicators; and
    • an approach for gathering data on each of these measures.

Table 2 illustrates a proposed indicator framework for use by the ATN institutions as suggested in the ACER Report (2007).

                                Table 2: ACER Report’s (2007) proposal for an ATN indicator framework for Academic Standards
                                                          (1) Education and           (2) Policy levers and    (3) Antecedents or
                                                          learning outputs and        contexts shaping         constraints that
                                                          outcomes                    educational outcomes     contextualise policy
                            (I) Individual participants   Graduation Graduate         Student engagement       Entry levels Entry
                            in education and              destinations Satisfaction   Retention and progress   pathways Student
                            learning                      Learning outcomes                                    diversity
                                                          Graduate qualities Work
                                                          readiness

                            (II) Instructional settings   Teaching experience         Teaching processes       Staff characteristics
                                                          Teaching resources          Course management        University enculturation
                                                                                                               Educational resources
                                                                                                               Course development
                                                                                                               Support systems
                            (III) Providers of            Institutional growth        Academic governance      Institutional characteristics
                            educational services          Institutional reputation    Academic management      Institutional reputation
                                                          Community engagement        Academic culture Staff   Institutional resources
                                                                                      development Quality      Industry engagement
                                                                                      systems
Source: ACER Report (Coates 2007), Figure 2 ATN academic indicators

As demonstrated in Table 2, the ACER (2007) report suggests collection of data that reflects: output-outcome, processes, and input
(represented by the columns in Table 2); and analysis from the perspectives of student, teacher and teaching environment, and institution
(represented by the rows in Table 2).

2.2 The Carrick Institute’s TQI Project approach
Since the ACER report (2007) was presented to the ATN, stage 2 of the Carrick Institute’s Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Project has
been established. The TQI Project presents further suggestions to inform the development of an indicator framework similar to that
pursued in the ACER’s ATN Academic Standards Model.

The key goal of the TQI Project is the enhancement of the outcomes of students’ learning and experiences. Within the context of the TQI
Project, four dimensions have been identified by the Carrick Institute as being particularly critical for quality learning and teaching in
universities. These dimensions are:
   • Institutional climate and systems
        The institution’s commitment to the enhancement, transformation and innovation of learning, which involves evaluation of
        institution, staff and student levels of satisfaction. The institution should:
        o support student-centred learning approaches
        o value teaching and teachers
        o identify desirable teacher characteristics
        o employ and develop relevant and appropriate teaching experience and qualifications.

     •   Diversity and inclusivity
         With an increasingly globalised Higher Education sector, student and staff diversity has intensified. Institutions need to embrace
         inclusivity of student and staff diversity and cater for different learning needs through aspects such as those reflected in the
         institution’s:
         o international students
         o increased diversity of cultures
         o social origins of students
         o social economic status of students
         o race and ethnicity of students/staff
         o gender of students/staff.

     •   Engagement and learning community
         Engagement and participation of students and staff in collaborative active learning and opportunities to participate in multiple
         learning communities. Industry involvement in engaging with learning is also significant to the ATN context.

     •   Assessment
         Universities should facilitate assessment policy and practices that transform the student experience and fosters lifelong learning.
         Such assessment is based on:
         o evidence of learning
         o current assessment theory and practice



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                        APPENDIX B
                                                                    Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

         o    regular review (internally and externally) for internal improvement
         o    commitment to formative assessment
         o    assessment of graduate attributes
         o    encourage innovative assessment practices
         o    sharing this knowledge and practice across the university and beyond.

These dimensions of quality teaching and learning will guide the work of the universities in the pilot TQI Project 1 as they develop their
individualised frameworks of teaching quality indicators. Furthermore, the institutional climate and systems dimension is seen as being
fundamental to institutional change and improvement to learning and teaching quality. Carrick Institute has identified possible examples
of learning and teaching indicators for these four TQI dimensions, a small, draft sample of which are presented in Table 3.




1
 Pilot universities involved in the TQI Project are: Deakin Uni; Griffith Uni; Macquarie Uni; RMIT; Uni of Qld; Uni of WA; UniSA; Uni of Tas.
Visit: http://www.carrickinstitute.edu.au/carrick/go/home/cache/offonce/pid/370



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                             APPENDIX B
                                                                         Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

                                  Table 3: Sample of broad indicators for the four dimensions of quality learning and teaching*
                        Engagement and learning               Assessment           Institutional climate and    Diversity and inclusivity
                               community                                                       systems
                           Student engagement           Assessment policies          Adoption of a student-            Valuing and
                         Fostering and facilitating          address issues of              centred learning      accommodating student
                            (academic) learning                  pedagogy                      perspective           and staff diversity
                                communities            Adopting an evidence-         Possession of desirable      Provision of adequate
                         Engaging and identifying           based approach to          teacher characteristics        support services
                               with a learning             assessment policies      Relevant and appropriate     Active recruitment and
                                 community               Alignment between               teaching experience,           admissions
                            Staff engagement             institutional policy for          qualifications and   Provision of transition and
                                                       best practice and faculty/            development             academic support
                                                         departmental activities     Use of current research     Active staff recruitment
                                                      Commitment to formative           findings in informing     Multiple pathways for
                                                                assessment                    teaching and       reward and recognition of
                                                        Provision of specific,            curriculum/ course                staff
                                                         continuous and timely                   content
                                                                 feedback          Community engagement/
                                                     Explicit learning outcomes                partnership
                                                         Value of graduates        Funding model in support
                                                                                      of teaching and learning

* source: Chalmers, D. (Aug 2007) A review of Australian and international quality systems and indicators of learning and teaching, The Carrick Institute for
Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, Chippendale, NSW, p. 79, Table 3.2;
www.carrickinstitute.edu.au/carrick/webdav/users/siteadmin/public/t&lindicators_report_v3_oct07.pdf




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX B
                                                                                                      Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


Figure 1: Mapping of ACER ATN indicator of academic standards framework with Carrick Institute’s TQI four dimensions
ACER           Inputs                                                      Processes                                                 Outputs
Information
collected at
level of
               ACER            TQI*                                        ACER          TQI*                                        ACER            TQI*
               Indicator       D1       D2       D3            D4          Indicator     D1       D2       D3            D4          Indicator       D1       D2       D3            D4
                               Engage   Assess   Institution   Diversity                 Engage   Assess   Institution   Diversity                   Engage   Assess   Institution   Diversity
               Institutional                                               Academic                                                  Institutional
institution




               characteris-                                                governance                                                growth
               tics
               Institutional                                               Academic                                                  Institutional
               reputation                                                  management                                                reputation
               Institutional                                               Academic                                                  Community
               resources                                                   culture                                                   engagement
               Industry                                                    Staff
               engagement                                                  development
               University                                                  Quality
               enculturation                                               systems
               Staff                                                       Teaching               #                                  Teaching
               characteris-                                                processes                                                 experience
               tics
Teacher




               Educational                                                 Course                 #                                  Teaching
               resources                                                   management                                                resources
               Course
               development
               Support
               systems
               Entry levels                                                Student                                                   Graduation
                                                                           engagement
               Entry                                                       Retention &                                               Graduate
               pathways                                                    progress                                                  destinations
Student




               Student                                                                                                               Satisfaction
               diversity
                                                                                                                                     Learning                 #
                                                                                                                                     outcomes
                                                                                                                                     Graduate                 #
                                                                                                                                     qualities
                                                                                                                                     Work                     #
                                                                                                                                     readiness
TQI Project Dimensions:
D1 = Engagement & learning community; D2 = Assessment; D3 = Institutional climate & systems; D4 = Diversity & inclusivity.
# TQI dimension implied by the ACER Indicator i.e. the correlation has potential dependent on the data generated/ interpretation.
For the TQI Project information is collected at levels of Institution > Portfolio/Faculty > School/Department > Program > Teacher.

                                                                                                                                                                                                 38
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model



2.3 ACER and Carrick indicators: A Comparison
Figure 1 presents a cross mapping of the ACER ATN indicator framework with the four dimensions
of the TQI Project. It has been prepared to show the similarities and differences between the ACER
and TQI frameworks. A preliminary analysis suggests that:
    • The ACER report identifies a variety of metrics that support and are similar to the TQI
        dimensions of Institutional climate and systems and Engagement and learning community;
    • There is poor representation of indicators to support monitoring the TQI dimension of
        Assessment in the ACER report and this ‘gap’ is reflected in the ACER report’s
        Recommendation No. 6;
    • Limited metrics have been identified by the ACER report for the TQI dimension of
        Diversity and inclusivity.

Figure 2 below presents another level of detail of cross mapping ACER ATN indicators with the
broad level Carrick TQI indicators. This matrix provides further insights into the similarities,
differences and gaps between the two frameworks. A brief analysis of Figure 2 depicts the
following emergent themes that build on trends identified in Figure 1.

The ACER model portrays themes particular to the characteristics of the ATN, such as:
   • Work readiness
   • Industry engagement
   • Institutional reputation from an ATN perspective.

The ACER model seems to recognise a broader approach than the initial drafting of the broad level
indicators represented by the Carrick Institute’s TQI Project to learning and teaching identified in
Table 3. The ACER’s indicators are also nominated at teacher and student levels and highlight
learning and teaching processes and outputs such as:
    • Course development
    • Teaching processes
    • Course management
    • Student engagement
    • Academic management
    • Academic culture
    • Quality systems
    • Teaching experience
    • Learning outcomes.

Alternatively, the approach of the Carrick Institute’s TQI Project is more explicit than the ACER
model in identifying indicators for:
     • Assessment, including the diversity of assessment and feedback (e.g. formative and
        summative practices)
     • Student and staff diversity
     • Explicit emphasis on student-centred teaching.
It is worth noting that the TQI details on the Engagement and learning community dimension are
under development.

In summary, this preliminary alignment of the ACER ATN Academic Standards Model with the
Carrick Institute TQI framework outlines possibilities for developing a framework for advancing


                                                                                                 39
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

learning and teaching within the ATN. Importantly, this framework should reflect the mission and
distinctive qualities of the ATN.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             APPENDIX B
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

 Figure 2: Mapping of TQI Indicators with ACER Indicators
                                                                                    ACER Indicators
                                                                                    Inputs                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Processes                                                                                                                                                                                  Outputs




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Community engagement
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Academic management
                                                                                                                                                                                                         University enculturation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Educational resources




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Academic governance
                                                                                                      Institutional reputation




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Institutional reputation




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Graduate destinations
                                                                                                                                 Institutional resources




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Retention & progress
                                                                                                                                                           Industry engagement




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Course management




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Teaching experience
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Student engagement
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Course development




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Teaching processes




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Teaching resources
                                                                                                                                                                                 Staff characteristics




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Learning outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Institutional growth




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Graduate qualities
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Staff development
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Academic culture
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Support systems




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Student diversity




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Quality systems




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Work readiness
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Entry pathways
                                                                                    characteristics




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Entry levels




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Satisfaction
                                                                                    Institutional




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Graduation
 TQI
 Indicators

                              Student engagement


                              Fostering & facilitating (academic) learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ?
learning community
D1: Engagement &




                              communities

                              Engaging & identifying with a learning community
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ?
                              Staff engagement


                              Assessment policies address issues of pedagogy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ?                                      ?
                              Alignment between institutional policy for best
                              practice & faculty/departmental activities                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   ?
                              Commitment to formative assessment

                              Provision of specific, continuous & timely
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             ? ?
D2: Assessment




                              feedback

                              Explicit learning outcomes

                              Value of graduates
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ? ?
                              Adoption of a student-centred learning
                              perspective                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ?
                              Possession of desirable teacher characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                                   ?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       ?
D3: Institutional climate &




                              Relevant and appropriate teaching experience,
                              qualifications & development
                              Use of current research findings in informing
                              teaching & curriculum/ course content                                                                                                                                        ?
                              Community engagement/ partnership
systems




                              Funding model in support of teaching & learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ?
                              Valuing & accommodating student & staff
                              diversity                                                                                                                                            ?
D4: Diversity & inclusivity




                              Provision of adequate support services

                              Active recruitment & admissions

                              Provision of transition & academic support
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   ?
                              Active staff recruitment
                                                                                                        ? ?                                                                        ?
                              Multiple pathways for reward & recognition of staff



                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   41
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX B
                                                                                                                                                                                      Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

   = specified in both the ACER report and draft TQI framework; ? = There is potential for correlations between the ACER & TQI indicators dependent on the interpretations used to determine the metrics and consequential data collection; e.g. TQI indicator ‘Active staff
recruitment’ would be one aspect that could contribute to measuring the ACER indicator ‘Institutional reputation’. ;




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                42
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

The ATN’s statement of its distinctive vision and practice is used here (refer to Figure 3) to
determine the qualities of learning, teaching and research within its universities. From this
statement, the ATN qualities are identified in Table 4, where there is an attempt to align these
specific ATN value commitments with the Carrick Institute TQI dimensions.


Figure 3: The ATN’s statement of vision and practice




Source: ATN in Profile, Volume 3, Edition 5 – Sept 2007, p. 4




                                                                                             43
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                 APPENDIX B
                             Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Table 4: Alignment of ATN values and qualities with TQI dimensions
ATN quality                                                                     Related to TQI dimension/s
Building partnerships with industry, government and community                   Engagement & learning community

Finding practical solutions to industry and community issues through focussed   Engagement & learning community
research
Work ready graduates supported by relevant education and training               Institutional climate & systems
                                                                                Engagement & learning community
Cultivation of lifelong learning                                                Engagement & learning community

Contribution to creation of sustainable societies                               Engagement & learning community
                                                                                Institutional climate & systems
Internationalisation of learning, teaching and curriculum                       Diversity & inclusivity

Championing diversity, equity and access to tertiary education                  Diversity & inclusivity


Table 4 affirms that the current ATN values, qualities, priorities and focus seem to most strongly
support the TQI Project dimensions of Engagement & learning community and Diversity &
inclusivity and with underpinning support for the dimension of Institutional climate and systems.
No explicit statements are made by the ATN related to the TQI dimension of Assessment.

2.4 An emerging ATN framework
Taking into consideration the work represented in the ACER (2007) report and the Carrick
Institute’s TQI Project, there is a strong argument for the ATN to further pursue the development of
an ATN framework for measuring, monitoring, and advancing learning and teaching quality,
consistent with its members’ values and mission. This is particularly so in the current Higher
Education context that has identified the criticality of improving the quality of learning and
teaching in universities.

The ACER (2007) report purports to explore the possibilities of developing an ATN Academic
Standards Model. However, as already discussed (refer to Section 1.2), the focus is predominantly
on the learning and teaching aspects of academic work. Furthermore, while the ACER report raises
academic standards, yet its central concept examines development of indicators that could act as
pointers to quality of learning and teaching related activity. This leads to the connection with the
Carrick Institute’s TQI Project. The TQI Project aims to build a framework of indicators that can be
used to systematically monitor across four quality dimensions and across multiple organisational
levels in order to inform the advancement of excellence in learning and teaching activity within the
university.

Therefore, the commonality is that both the ACER report and the TQI Project focus on developing
indicators for the purposes of examining learning and teaching function performed at universities.
The differences between the two projects are that the
    • ACER report aspires towards development of academic standards from a learning and
        teaching perspective; and,
    • TQI Project aspires towards advancing learning and teaching in the Higher Education
        context.
However, in the current phases of the two projects, the focus is on determining the appropriate
indicators that could inform these aspirational goals. This commonality is not coincidental.

To develop academic standards of learning and teaching there is a need to develop indicators across
a group (in this case, the ATN) to generate data that is shared for benchmarking purposes. The

RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                    APPENDIX B
                                                Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

benchmarking process then allows for determining academic standards that reflect minimum
specification of performance that are non negotiable i.e. performance must meet the minimum level
specified by the standard. Consequently, the ACER report does not develop academic standards, but
rather a process to begin to develop the learning and teaching standards through the determination
and use indicators that will indicate the level of performance.

Simultaneously, the TQI Project is concerned with determining appropriate performance indicators
of learning and teaching excellence. It is not until the data is generated, examined and then acted
upon that the goal of advancing excellence in learning and teaching can be achieved. Like the
ACER report, the TQI Project provides a process for working towards advancing excellence in
learning and teaching.

The developmental processes underpinning both projects can be represented by a 3D shape (see
Figure 4). The aspirational goals of both projects (refer to the shaded area of Figure 4) will emerge
but are founded on determining relevant and appropriate performance indicators. Currently, both
projects are at the 2D phase (front facing, unshaded area of Figure 4).

Figure 4: Representation of the 3D conceptualisation of developing learning and teaching standards and
advancing learning and teaching performance




                                               Learning & Teaching Indicators
           Data collected at multiple levels




                                                                                Emerging standards &
                                                                                performance for advancing
                                                                                learning & teaching quality as a
                                                                                result of collaborative effort




The purpose of an ATN framework is to show leadership in enhancing learning and teaching quality
by utilising indicators within systemic and evaluative processes. The benefits of collaboratively
developing an ATN framework of learning and teaching outcomes include providing its member
universities with the opportunity to:
   • engage in and monitor learning and teaching quality within member institutions that is
        supported by an ATN shared experience
   • benchmark, generate and share research, knowledge and practice for advancing learning and
        teaching quality among the ATN member institutions


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

    •    enhance the distinctive qualities of the ATN membership through a culture that advances
         quality learning and teaching
    •    provide opportunities for collaboration on particular learning and teaching issues across the
         ATN
    •    develop a framework that provides a potential shared pool of ATN indicators, which each
         ATN member commits to utilise and allows flexibility to respect individuality of members’
         interests and/or priorities
    •    draw upon indicator similarities in the implementation of the ATN framework to inform
         development of academic standards and advancement of learning and teaching quality.

For illustrative purposes, we have prepared an example of a framework that could be
adapted/adopted by the ATN and applied it to two issues of particular relevance to this report,
namely ‘Assessment’ and ‘Graduate Qualities’ in Tables 5 and 6. Importantly, these are only
indicative and would need substantially more work in keeping with the recommendations made in
this report. The indicators have been drawn from the ACER report, TQI Project, and development
of further indicators from our experience to fill any gaps. The focus in these two draft examples (i.e.
Tables 5 & 6) was to examine what indicators might ‘look like’ within an ATN framework across
the parameters of institutional levels (e.g. division, program) against systemic levels (e.g. inputs,
processes).




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX B
                                                                                             Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Table 5: Draft Framework Example 1 – Assessment Indicators
                            Institution                        Division/ Portfolio/ Schools               Program                                  Teacher
Input                       -Provision of clear language       -Provision of clear language guides and    -Students receive orientation to the     -Mixture of formative and summative
                            guides and advice on policies      advice on policies and processes on        assessment requirements of program of    assessment tasks
                            and processes on assessment        assessment                                 study
                            -Training provided on              -Training provided on assessment           -Assessment tasks are spaced at
                            assessment                                                                    appropriate intervals in the programs
Process                     -Student survey on perception of   -Monitoring and external review of the     -Students receiving orientation to the   -Students being assessed on the
                            clarity of assessment policy and   alignment of programs, objectives and      assessment requirements of discipline    learning and graduate attributes
                            requirements                       assessment                                 and program of study                     relevant to the course and program of
                            -First year student experience     -Systematic review of assessment           -Workload models accounting for          study
                            survey                             practices appropriate to program and       specific demands of the assessment
                                                               learning outcomes.                         types and provision of feedback
                                                               -Student achievement is mapped by
                                                               demographics/ equity group for different
                                                               assessment tasks
                                                               -Monitoring of grades assigned and
                                                               process for establishing comparability
                                                               across programs/courses
Outcome/Output              -Student survey responses on       Evidence of:                               Academic and assessment skills are       -Students receive clear feedback on
                            assessment (internal & external    -Assessment policies are applied           being addressed and taught in            the quality of their learning and their
                            surveys)                           consistently and transparently.            programs. For example, use of:           learning progresses in a timely
                            -Evidence of policy guidelines,    -Implementation of standards and           -Course evaluations                      manner
                            expectations, timeliness on the    moderation policy                          -Evidence of alignment of learning       -Student evaluations of teaching re
                            provision of feedback to                                                      objectives, graduate attributes and      satisfaction on timeliness and quality
                            students on assessment.                                                       assessment                               of assessment




                                                                                                                                                                                    47
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                           APPENDIX B
                                                                                       Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Table 6: Draft Framework Example 2 – Graduate Attributes Indicators
                            Institution                          Division/ Portfolio           Program                      Teacher
Input                       -Incoming student                    -Course accreditation,        -Industry engagement in      -Staff teaching qualifications
                            characteristics re: international,   development and approval      program design               -Teaching staff experience
                            equity groups                        policy guidelines &
                            -Teaching resources provided         support
                            - Investment in appropriate
                            learning infrastructure
Process                     -Student engagement data             -Curriculum management/                                    -Teaching quality data
                            -Progress rates                      approval processes                                         -Staff/student ratios
                            -Retention rates                     highlights incorporation of
                            -Staff professional learning &       graduate attributes
                            development programs
Outcome                     -Employer satisfaction data          Evidence of:                  - Data on work readiness     Number of teaching awards
                            -Labour force participation          - Curriculum policy           and employability skills     Production of teaching
                            rates                                compliance                    -Student satisfaction data   resources
                            -Data on generic skills              - Engagement of academic      -Program demand data
                            -Data on work readiness and          community to improving
                            employability skills                 curriculum approval/
                            -Completion rates                    renewal processes
                            -Graduate satisfaction data          -Service learning
                            -Student satisfaction data           participation rates
                            -Validated assessment results        -Data on community
                            -Student engagement data             engagement programs
                            -Placement on institutional
                            rankings
                            -Program demand data
                            -Service learning participation
                            rates
                            -Data on community
                            engagement programs



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model



2.5 A way forward
The ACER (2007) report suggested eight recommendations for the ATN’s consideration to develop
the concept of an ‘academic standards model’. Analysing these recommendations from an ATN
perspective, this report responds to them and suggests further actions to move the agenda forward.

This report proposes that the ACER recommendations require essentially three different types of
responses from ATN DVC/PVC (A) members.

Firstly, the ACER Recommendation Nos. 1-4 are largely definitional in nature. They are important
in the deliberation by the ATN’s DVC/PVC (A) members to determine a shared understanding of
the concept that develops an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching quality. The
adoption of these recommendations is often contingent upon the results of the Recommendation
Nos. 5-8 and the parallel development of the TQI. Table 7 below responds to each of the first four
recommendations with proposed actions for discussion among the ATN’s DVC/PVC (A) members.

Secondly, the ACER Recommendation Nos. 5-8 are more specific and directional in their focus and
a broad scope ‘action plan’ has been prepared for each one in Section Four of this response. These
highlight the more detailed options for developing practice elaborated upon in the report and lend
themselves to more immediate consideration and adoption.

Thirdly, all of the ACER report’s recommendations need to acknowledge and accommodate key
developments in significant initiatives such as the Carrick Institute’s TQI Project. That endeavour
will generate information that is critical to any future understanding and measurement of academic
standards as they relate to learning and teaching and students’ experiences of Higher Education.
The TQI Project will highlight the fundamental importance of teaching in Higher Education
institutions and has the potential to shape and reflect the ATN’s shared understanding of ‘academic
standards.’ The TQI Project is also about measurement, indicator frameworks, monitoring and
benchmarking, and seeks to define and enhance performance levels and quality. Therefore, any
ATN framework for academic standards and benchmarking initiatives should be strategic and work
in alignment with TQI measures development to also engage with advancing learning and teaching
in Higher Education contexts.




                                                                                                49
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX B
                                                                                                                                                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Table 7: Responses to the ACER (2007) report’s Recommendation Nos. 1-4 for ATN DVC/PVC (A) members’ consideration
ACER (2007) report recommendation                           Proposed ATN response
1: ATN institutions should adopt a consistent definition    Academic standards can be achieved once benchmarking of comparative indicator data within and/or across institutions are established. Initially, a framework of
of ‘academic standards’ as being ‘levels of performance     indicators is able to inform and ascertain the performance quality of academic standards. The Carrick Institute is investigating the development of a framework which is
on key academic indicators of educational quality’.         demonstrative of indicators of teaching quality. It is therefore suggested that the ATN should initially develop a framework of indicators that advances the learning and
                                                            teaching quality, drawing upon the work of the TQI Project. Such a framework should allow for commonality between ATN members for the development of standards
                                                            and respect individuality of ATN members.

                                                            The ACER report on academic standards was almost exclusively focused on teaching and learning of an academic’s role and function. We acknowledge that academics
                                                            perform broader roles, but these were neither the focus of the ACER report nor that of the Carrick Teaching Quality Indicators Project.

                                                            Once the ATN framework is embedded within institutional processes and practices and the data are available for sharing among the ATN organisational members, then
                                                            academic standards may be developed from an evidence-based perspective. The development of academic standards will require a consistent definition among the ATN
                                                            member organisations.
                                                            Recommendation: The shared definition of ‘academic standards’ recommended for adoption by the ATN is: “ the ATN’s agreed levels of performance on key
                                                            learning and teaching related indicators of educational quality”.

2: ATN institutions should endorse the proposed ATN         The ATN should endorse in principle the development of a framework of indicators for advancing learning and teaching quality. A framework (rather than a model)
Academic Standards Model, which consists of a high-         provides a flexible approach for implementation rather than dictating one model for all ATN member organisations. Such an approach will provide for benchmarking
level indicator framework, a suite of measures to           and developing standards as well as respect individuality of ATN members to systematically examine their performance of institutional uniqueness/ interests/ priorities.
support these indicators, an approach for gathering data
on each of these measures and a series of standards for     A framework also allows for developing multiple levels of indicators (e.g. institution/ faculty/ department/ school/ teacher/ student levels) and their associated metrics.
identifying performance.                                    It is recommended that the development of an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching quality:
                                                                 i) ensures a broad range of indicators at multiple levels that individual institutions can select for their particular context
                                                                 ii) identifies key indicators that are shared among all ATN member organisations to allow for comparative data, benchmarking and working towards ATN
                                                                      academic standards
                                                                 iii) captures the distinctive qualities of the ATN
                                                                 iv) includes indicators that are supported with a suite of measures
                                                                 v) offers an approach for gathering data of the metrics in preparation for analysis of the indicators
                                                                 vi) integrates an approach for evaluating the framework and its implementation process.

                                                            Recommendation: The ATN framework aligns its indicators (as above) within the four quality dimensions of teaching identified by the Carrick Institute’s
                                                            TQI Project i.e. Institutional climate and systems, Diversity and inclusivity, Engagement and learning community, and Assessment.

3: ATN institutions should produce a succinct plain This will be a useful resource, particularly to outline how academic standards are achieved within the ATN and how they relate to diverse stakeholder groups.
language summary that provides information to relevant However, as this requires a working knowledge of the operationalisation of the ATN framework and the future development of ATN academic standards, this
stakeholder groups on the specification, measurement, recommendation should be revisited after implementation of the ATN framework.
monitoring and enhancement of academic standards.
This could be prepared by individual institutions, or
across the ATN as a whole.

4: ATN institutions should implement the ATN                The concept of an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching quality should be endorsed in principle as a significant institutional and cross institutional
Academic Standards Model. This would involve                mechanism that could be used to develop standards and improve the quality of learning and teaching. However, the current ACER model is a conceptual rather than an
operationalising the model, mapping data elements           operational model. Consequently, it is proposed that the ACER’s Recommendation Nos. 5-8 be considered for trial; the results of which should inform the
against defined measures and indicators, managing and       development of an indicator framework that would underpin the ATN academic standards while simultaneously considering:
analysing data, developing performance measures and            • The principles and definitions agreed to by the ATN related to ACER’s Recommendation Nos. 1-4
reports, and establishing routines for benchmarking and        • The four Carrick Institute TQI dimensions critical to quality learning and teaching
improvement.                                                   • Any further priorities agreed as significant by the ATN.
                                                             The ACER’s Recommendation Nos. 5-8 are addressed in Section Four of this report.



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                           50
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

3. Teaching and learning policies and programs in the ATN:
A comparison with leading practice

3.1 Introduction
Section Two provided an overview of the alignment between the ACER Academic Standards
Model and the Carrick Institute’s TQI Framework. It highlighted similarities and gaps in their
current formats and made recommendations for moving the agenda forward. In particular, the
Carrick Institute’s Engagement and Learning and Institutional Climate and Systems dimensions
were well represented in both frameworks at the institutional level.

In order to identify some possible priorities for future benchmarking of teaching and learning at an
institutional level, it was deemed important to gain a sense of the ATN members’ current policies,
programs and plans and to compare them with those of high performing universities. This
baseline/benchmarking activity will also help to signpost:
    a) The similarities and differences between the ATN universities and their approaches to
         teaching and learning management and improvement; and
    b) How the ATN universities compare with high performing universities.

The methodology adopted here was limited to a desktop research activity that compared
institutional policy and support for learning and teaching in two international and four national high
performing institutions external to the ATN, with those of the ATN members. This comparative
activity provides further insights into possible areas for advancing learning and teaching excellence
within the ATN.

The research method used the elements (e.g. graduate attributes in Table 8) identified in the
following tables (Tables 8-11) as keyword searches and/or they were searched within the learning
and teaching unit if they existed in the institution. If these web-based searches did not readily reveal
relevant results, nothing is recorded against the element for that particular institution. At times there
were examples of evidence for an element but a cohesive approach was not easily identified and/or
accessible. In such cases the tables indicate this difficulty. These tables provide an overview of the
key input indicators (e.g. policy, resources) that could be used by ATN members for benchmarking
purposes at an institutional level.

The cross institutional benchmarking was based on four key learning and teaching areas of
   • strategic plans and frameworks
   • policies
   • support programs
   • references and resources.

The four universities external to the ATN that were used in this benchmarking exercise reflect high
performances in the area of learning and teaching according to their results in quality processes
such as the recent LTPF scores, AUQA results, and policy management reputations. Using these
criteria, the University of New South Wales, University of Queensland, University of Wollongong,
and Monash University were identified as nationally recognised teaching and learning performance
leaders. In essence, it was considered important to see what we, as ATN members, could learn from
a policy management perspective from universities that appear to have performed well in their
teaching and learning practices. The external universities selected were Harvard University and
University of Oxford to provide an international perspective.



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
The following comparative analysis is necessarily broad yet it does identify some interesting trends
that can inform the ATN of a way forward for creating a framework for advancing learning and


teaching excellence. The analysis for each key area initially ascertains the common and distinctive
features of the four high performing institutions, followed by an international perspective, and then
there is a comparison of performance against these elements within the ATN member organisations.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX B
                                                                                     Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


3.2        Learning and teaching plans and frameworks
Table 8 below identifies university performance against elements of learning and teaching related to overarching institutional strategic plans and
frameworks.

Table 8: Learning and Teaching Plans and Frameworks
                                                                                                    Institution
Plans/ Frameworks                            High performing learning &teaching             ATN universities                               International
                                             universities                                                                                  universities
                                             UNSW       UQ          UoW         Monash      UniSA       Curtin    RMIT      UTS      QUT   Oxford      Harvard

Generic graduate qualities/ attributes                                                                      #         #        

Faculty performance indicators                                                                       *         *         *        ^

Sessional staff action plan                                                                                     x                  x
Strategic Plan                                                                                                                    

Teaching and Learning Framework                                                                                                     

Teaching and Learning Plans – operational                                                                 
Teaching and Learning Plans – strategic                                                                              *             
# program specific graduate attributes; NB: RMIT Academic Board has recently approved generic graduate attributes (see Tables 12 -14).
* evident but difficult to find on the institution’s website and/or not comprehensively identified across the institution
^ embedded in the Learning and Teaching Plan 2007-2011
x support for professional learning/ development of sessional academic staff but a holistic policy/ action plan not evident
blank box indicates no evidence of the element on the website as a result of the websearch on the institution’s website

Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities
    •    The LTPF and Carrick Institute are given a direct link within their Teaching and Learning home pages.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    • All four universities have clear and accessible statements about their ‘Graduate Qualities/Attributes’, all have ‘Learning and Teaching Strategic
      Plans’ and operational plans.
Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities
    UNSW is the only institution with a dedicated Sessional Staff Action Plan.
    •
    UNSW and UQ also have a specific set of Faculty based teaching and learning KPIs.
    •
    UoW outlines ‘cascading’ elements of checking teaching and learning quality at each level – subject, course, faculty – in checklist form. This makes
    •
    it clear what the quality teaching indicators are at each level of good practice at UoW for assessment.
  • UoW has reviewed its Graduate Qualities and incorporated a ‘Flexibile Approach for Faculties’ clause, where faculties can develop discipline
    specific Qualities, and/or use the existing institutional Qualities
Comparisons with International universities
University of Oxford
   • The primary and overarching responsibility for learning and teaching related activity is through the Educational Policy and Standards Committee
       (EPSC).
   • Locating the relevant learning and teaching related plans, frameworks and policies was difficult and the institution recognises the need to continue to
       ‘raise esteem for teaching’ (North Commission of Inquiry: Chapter 8 – Teaching and learning: quality assurance; 1997; 1999). Perhaps Oxford’s
       Homepage is indicative of the contestation between the teaching and research profiles: the homepage has the following subheadings on its homepage:
       Admissions; Divisions; Colleges; Visitors & Friends; International; Research; Enterprise; About the University.
   • The Corporate Plan (2005-6 to 2009-10) has three out of ten of its strategies dedicated to learning and teaching and further support and develop
       proposals put forward in the 2005 Academic Strategy Green Paper.
   • The Learning and Teaching Strategy (2002-2005) is readily located on the website but an updated/current version is not evident.

Harvard University
   • After an extensive search of Harvard’s website there was no success in identifying access to Harvard’s policies, strategies (including learning and
      teaching related policies and strategies) or strategic (corporate) plans.
   • The Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Handbook for Faculty ‘reproduces essential information about the policies that govern such critical aspects
      of academic life as free speech, leaves, and hiring practices and reviews important rules relative to a faculty member’s responsibilities as an officer
      of instruction in FAS’ (p. 4). Hence, this provides evidence that policies, plans and strategies exist but are not available publicly or electronically.
   • As for the University of Oxford, it has been difficult to locate the learning and teaching profile on Harvard University’s website. While research is
      given a profile from the homepage, learning and teaching does not have a weblink from this initial entry point. This is despite the key body that
      supports the learning and teaching function, the Derek Bok Centre for Teaching and Learning, having been active in the university and established in
      1975.



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                              APPENDIX B
                                                                                          Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
Comparisons with the ATN member organisations
It is observed from Table 8 that the ATN could generally improve in strategic areas of learning and teaching plans/ frameworks and sessional staff action
plans to advance learning and teaching.




3.3        Learning and teaching policies
Table 9 presents a comparative analysis of university performance on specific learning and teaching related policies that influence institutional practices.

Table 9: Learning and Teaching Related Policies
                                                                                                           Institution
Policies                                           High performing learning & teaching         ATN universities                          International
                                                   universities                                                                          universities
                                                   UNSW UQ              UoW        Monash      UniSA        Curtin    RMIT   UTS   QUT   Oxford      Harvard

Assessment                                                                                                                      
Performance Management (academic staff)                                                                                                    

Probation (academic staff)                                                                                                                 

Program approval                                                                                                                 

Academic Promotion                                                                                                                         
Quality assurance and improvement                                                                       *                         

Recruitment                                                                                                                                 

Reward and recognition of good teaching                                                                 *           *    *                     
* evident but difficult to find on the institution’s website and/or not comprehensively identified across the institution
blank box indicates no evidence of the element on the website as a result of the websearch on the institution’s website

Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                   APPENDIX B
                                                                               Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    • Leading universities (UoW, UQ, UNSW) have grouped Teaching and Learning policies under that heading on their websites for ease of access and
      use. All four institutions group policies at lower hierarchical levels; e.g. UQ, UNSW & UoW have a teaching and learning policy webpage that lists
      relevant policies specific to teaching and learning.
   • Monash does not have policy grouped in this way, but rather under ‘Education’ and in much smaller, themed groups.
   • These strategies appear to make accessing relevant policies from these websites easy.
Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities’ policies
    •    Two institutions have distinctive Learning & Teaching related policies:
           o Wollongong Information Literacies Policy which supports the requirement for all undergraduate students to complete the Information
               Literacies Introductory Program in their first semester
           o Monash University’s Transition Policy, which outlines what faculties need to be aware of for students’ smooth transition to University and
               Flexibility in Pedagogy Policy, which articulates flexible learning in a policy and outlines its various components.

    •    Whilst UoW does not have a particular policy regarding recognition of good teaching, they do have a grants and awards program which mirrors the
         Carrick Institute’s framework

    Monash’s Centre of Higher Education Quality (CHEQ) undertakes and monitors all data collection and analysis within and external to the University
    •
    –including employer surveys, staff satisfaction, CEI, etc. The Centre for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching (CALT) acts on the identified
    problem areas: for example poor performing courses are monitored and referred to CALT annually for action by ‘response teams’ who then work
    closely with the faculty on improvement. After some criticism about working on a ‘deficit model’ there is now work being done with the top 10%
    performing courses by bringing those staff into an awards and recognition process leading to Carrick applications and awards.
Comparisons with International universities
University of Oxford:
   • The assessment related policies are organised in the Educational Policy and Standards Committee (EPSC) policy document entitled: “Notes of
       Guidance on Examinations and Assessment”. This includes guiding principles of ‘good practice guide to assessment design’ (see Annexe B).
   • The EPSC policy document entitled: “Quality Assurance Handbook (2003)” covers areas such as development/review of programs and approval
       processes; student policy related to learning and teaching (e.g. feedback, complaints); monitoring of teaching; scholarship of teaching; links to
       external quality assurance authorities and their processes; work-related learning /placement learning; quality assurance template.
   • The “University of Oxford Human Resources Strategy to 2009” incorporates priorities that include enhancing learning and teaching e.g. for
       rewarding and retaining high-calibre staff that includes teaching excellence (see Theme C).
   • An internal teaching awards scheme has been established.

Harvard University


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    The Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Handbook for Faculty (which is located in the university’s Office of Academic Affairs homepage) seems to
    •
    be the primary document that informs staff of procedures for academic recruitment, promotion and responsibilities related to academic work
    (teaching and research). As previously discussed, there was no access directly to the organisation’s policies via the website.
  • There are Outstanding Teaching and Advising Awards (Task Force on Teaching and Career Development, a subunit of the Derek Bok Center for
    Teaching and Learning that was established in 2006). The Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning also biannually (end of each semester)
    awards the Harvard University Certificate of Distinction in Teaching to teaching staff that have been evaluated highly by their students for their
    teaching. Any teaching staff member that receives an average of 4.5 or above on the 5 point scale from the CUE evaluations (surveys completed by
    students at the end of the subject’s teaching). Sample of the new CUE instrument can be viewed at:
    http://www.registrar.fas.harvard.edu/evals/univ_sample.html
  • In 2006, the Harvard University established the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) Task Force on Teaching and Career Development. The mission
    of this Task Force is to examine “what the FAS might to do to foster and reward pedagogical improvement as a major professional commitment for
    academic scholars at all stages of their careers” (mission statement, p. 3; Task Force webpage). This Task Force has been responsible for developing
    the report “A Compact to Enhance Teaching and Learning at Harvard” (January, 2007), which seems to play a role in informing future
    practice/policy development (see ‘Call to Action’ section of the report). The report has identified five goals and associated recommendations to renew
    the commitment of FAS to excellence in teaching and learning. The five goals are:
        o Foster stronger collegial engagement and responsibility for effective teaching and learning
        o Support pedagogical creativity and remove impediments to experimentation
        o Regularly account for and assess all important aspects of teaching, advising, and efforts at pedagogical improvement
        o Reward good teaching and contributions to pedagogical improvement at all career levels
        o Make the enhanced FAS commitment to excellent teaching and enrichment of student learning visible within and beyond Harvard.
Comparisons with the ATN member organisations
In this particular category, the ATN appears to address many of the policy elements. However, in general, it seems that the ATN member organisations either
lack detail in their policies or are in the process of developing more coherent and comprehensive approaches (e.g. RMIT’s and UniSA’s assessment and
academic promotions policies). For ATN universities it is also relatively difficult to access intuitively (e.g. apart from the Assessment Policy and Procedures
Manual, UniSA doesn’t drill down further in its policies webpages; they are grouped under ‘Academic’ policies. Policy links are buried in the UniSA
Teaching and Learning website, only some are accessible in the academic progress pillar). Furthermore, in general, reward and recognition of good teaching
is an area that the ATN could improve its visibility via their websites.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                             APPENDIX B
                                                                                         Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model



3.4        Learning and teaching support programs
Table 10 summarises the elements analysed to scope the institutional support for teaching and learning. This category incorporates the opportunities for staff
professional learning and scholarship of learning, pedagogy and curriculum.

Table 10: Teaching and Learning Support Programs
                                                                                                                  Institution
Programs                                                         High performing learning & teaching      ATN universities                         International
                                                                 universities                                                                      universities
                                                                 UNSW         UQ     UoW       Monash     UniSA      Curtin     RMIT   UTS   QUT   Oxford       Harvard

Generic staff development                                                                                                                   
Foundations/ Grad Cert in Tertiary Learning & Teaching                                                                                    

Induction                                                                                                                                           

Leadership in Learning & Teaching Guidelines & Activities                                                                                      

Ongoing short courses/programs                                                                                                                       
Online support & modules                                                                                                                            

Sessional staff programs                                                                                                                              implied

Teaching & Learning Colloquium/ showcase/ expo etc                                                                                                    

Learning & Teaching Fellowships (internal)                                                                                                               

blank box indicates no evidence of the element on the website as a result of the websearch on the institution’s website

Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
All four universities have dedicated and well developed teaching and learning units. Some have a distributed model of support where units are established at
multiple levels. UQ is an example of a well developed teaching and learning unit known as the Teaching and Educational Development Institute (TEDI)
where the mission statement on the home page reads:
          TEDI supports the University of Queensland and its staff in their efforts to pursue excellence in all aspects of teaching and learning,
          by providing educational consultancy, resource development, staff development and evaluation services.

An example of a more distributed institutional model of learning and teaching support is presented by the University of Wollongong. In this case, UoW has a
well developed central unit known as the Centre for Educational Development and Interactive Resources (CEDIR), with further learning and teaching
support based at each Faculty. These include the Faculty Education Committee (to support the objectives of the University’s Learning & Teaching Strategic
Plan) and Faculty Assessment Committee (to ensure student results are processed efficiently and accurately).
Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities
    •    UNSW has two unique programs which address improvement of teaching & learning:
           o UNSW Network in Learning and Teaching (UNILT) provides ongoing development of teaching following the initial foundation program
             through workshops and events. Active grass-roots participation in the design and facilitation of staff development initiatives is exemplified by
             the UNSW Network in Learning and Teaching (UNILT). This network consists of around 185 University staff (both academic and non
             academic) who have a demonstrated record of achievement and development in learning and teaching practice. Each year these colleagues
             facilitate a series of fortnightly workshops with the support of Learning and Teaching @ UNSW.

              o Leadership in Teaching and Learning recognises and capitalises on award winning teachers within the institution as well as instigating a
                dialogue about the role of leadership in fostering quality teaching and learning.

    UoW has developed a network of Faculty Teaching & Learning scholars who are invited to provide leadership and support to designated teaching and
    •
    learning projects.
Comparisons with international universities
University of Oxford:
   • Generic staff development is generally delivered by Continuing Professional Development Centre that incorporates internal training and education
       and external professional development programs/consultancy for company, online and open delivery contexts.
   • The primary responsibility for supporting academics in their learning and teaching work is the Oxford Learning Institute. The Institute hosts a
       number of teaching and learning related initiatives, programs, schemes and centres. For example: Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning
       (CETL) supports those postgraduate and research staff who want to engage in professional learning (development) as academic practice, particularly
       in learning and teaching; tutoring staff have access to preparatory learning program; newly appointed academics have an orientation/induction
       program; and experienced academics may undertake the Postgraduate Diploma in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education.


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX B
                                                                                Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    •    There is a framework for management and leadership development that incorporates five stages of leadership engagement (refer to e.g. Oxford
         Learning Institute Annual Report 2006-7).
    •    The Oxford University Computing Services (OUCS) delivers support, training and education related to IT and e-learning.
    •    Career Development Fellowship (CDF) scheme established in 2002 assists in the development of promising early-career staff and to promote equality
         of opportunity for diversity of potential candidates.

Harvard University
   • The primary responsibility for supporting academic staff in their teaching and learning related activity is the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and
      Learning. Like the University of Oxford, the concept of ‘sessional staff’ is not readily transferable in these international contexts. Teaching and
      Learning related support seems to be equally supported for all levels of teaching staff, regardless of their classification.
   • Two key internal fellowship programs have been identified. The Departmental Teaching Fellows (TFs) program “appoints experienced and creative
      TFs/TAs [Teaching Assistants] to focus on enhancing teaching in their disciplines by consulting with their peers within departments, advising
      individual instructors and creating training programs, workshops, seminars, and other teaching related projects. Lead TFs benefit from professional
      development” e.g. training, mentoring, collaboration and working on multidisciplinary projects (Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning
      webpage). Another program is the Cabot Postdoctoral Fellowships for Innovation in Teaching. These are awarded annually “to teacher-scholars who
      have a strong interest in the practice of teaching and who wish to undertake a research or pedagogical project at the Bok Center” (Derek Bok Center
      for Teaching and Learning webpage).
Comparisons with the ATN member organisations
    •    In common with the four high performing learning and teaching universities, all ATN member organisations have established a Foundations/Grad
         Cert in Tertiary Learning and Teaching program.

    •    QUT’s Academic Staff Development Program (March 2007) provides a comprehensive guide to academic staff of the professional learning
         opportunities within the university throughout the year. It aims to support the diverse needs of academics across their career progression (early/
         sessional/ mid/ senior and leadership positions) and requirements across the individual, school and faculty levels. It includes both learning and
         teaching related opportunities as well as, for example: research, safety and risk management, IT literacies, and equity. This comprehensively
         packaged program guide is comparable to the four high performing learning & teaching universities (e.g. see UQ: http://www.tedi.uq.edu.au/sdh/)

    •    Generally, the Learning and Teaching Fellowship is an emerging concept that is not strongly developed across either the ATN members or the four
         high performing learning and teaching universities. The exception is the ATN’s QUT which seems to have the longest running fellowship program
         (began in 2002) and so has refined the concept and its significance as a professional learning and scholarship process and activity.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX B
                                                                                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    •    Furthermore it seems that, in general, the profile of the learning and teaching support programs within the ATN could be improved on the website to
         increase accessibility to assist in awareness raising of institutional support to academic staff.

    •    The more innovative learning and teaching models for scholarship (e.g. Monash, UQ and UoW) are enacted with learning and teaching forums that,
         ultimately, foster institution wide sharing and learning.



3.5        Learning and teaching references and resources
Table 11 illustrates the types of learning and teaching related references and resources provided by ATN and other universities.

Table 11: Learning and Teaching References and Resources
                                                                                                                    Institution
References and Resources                                             High performing learning & teaching     ATN universities                        International
                                                                     universities                                                                    universities
                                                                     UNSW       UQ     UoW Monash            UniSA     Curtin     RMIT   UTS   QUT   Oxford     Harvard
Academic Career Support                                                                                                                                 
Compendium of Good Practice in Teaching and Learning                                                                 *                                      
Course/Program Design References                                                                                                                      
Guidelines for Teaching and Learning                                                                                                                      

Online support/ Teaching toolbox                                                                                                                      
Professional Advice & support units                                                                               *                                   

Sessional staff                                                                                                                                        implied
Teacher/ Course/ Program Evaluation Tools & References                                                            *          *                         
Specific Topic References and Resources:
- assessment                                                                                                                                         
- graduate attributes                                                                                                              *
- large classes                                                                                                                       *
- online teaching                                                                                                                                      
- plagiarism/ academic integrity                                                                                                                      
- teaching/research nexus                                                                                                              *                   
- transnational/ internationalisation                                                                                                 *
Tutoring (learning & teaching support resources)                                                                                                         
* evident but difficult to find on the institution’s website and/or not comprehensively identified across the institution
blank box indicates no evidence of the element on the website as a result of the websearch on the institution’s website


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                               APPENDIX B
                                                                                           Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Common features of high performing learning and teaching universities
    •    All four institutions have academic adviser and support units and resources directed to supporting all academic staff i.e. both ongoing and sessional staff .
Distinctive features of high performing learning and teaching universities
    •    UNSW has guidelines and resources dedicated to improving leadership in teaching and learning and a ‘Good Practice Compendium’ amongst a number of web and
         printable documents and resources available to staff. The compendium is a resource which reports on cases studies of leading practice teaching activities.
    •    UNSW: The ‘News’ section on the front page of the Learning And Teaching Unit website contains resources and references. Of particular interest, ‘Diversity at
         UNSW – student profile’ which provides student demographics data at program and faculty levels and support references on how to teach diverse student groups.
    •    University of Queensland dedicates a whole website to tutors, with links to school specific information.
    •    The University of Wollongong has a page dedicated to good practice teaching resources – offering case studies, assessment, graduate attributes, learning designs,
         quality assurance
    •    Monash University has a dedicated English language centre (MUELC)
    •    Monash University has instigated a project called CLEAR (Communication and Language Enhancement for Academics and Researchers) which is addressing
         improvements in the English language communication of teaching academics themselves, as well as supports for teaching multicultural classes
    •    UoW and UQ seem to incorporate much more dynamism via their website to support their academics’ professional learning needs.
Comparison with international universities
University of Oxford:
   • In general it is the EPSC or the Oxford Learning Institute, along with the OUCS, that develop and provide learning and teaching related resources.
   • Sessional staff as a concept does not seem to exist in the same way we define it. Tutorial staff seem to be consist of postgrad students who are
       wanting to engage in academic work. In this view, ‘sessional staff’ are supported with learning and teaching programs and ongoing seminars (see
       work within CETL).

Harvard University
   • The resources to support learning and teaching activity are predominantly provided by the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning. The two key
      documents that also support academic work, including teaching and learning, are the FAS Handbook for Faculty and the FAS Information for Faculty
      Offering Instruction in Arts and Sciences (2007-2008).



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                              APPENDIX B
                                                                                          Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    The Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning supports academic career development with the ‘Teaching Porfolio’ e-resource, which supports
    •
    academic staff on how to develop and maintain a teaching portfolio. The resource focuses on ‘components’ of a teaching portfolio within
    conventional media i.e. the Bok Center has not ventured to develop the functionality of an e-teaching portfolio.
Comparisons with ATN Universities
    •    Resources to support learning and teaching at the level of academics varies (both in quality and quantity) across the ATN, for example:
              o    UTS and Curtin have very good examples of resources for academics to support their work as teachers e.g. course design, online learning;
              o    Curtin & QUT have developed comprehensive document of the professional learning programs and opportunities available to support academic staff in
                   their teaching work during 2007;
              o    QUT have established the Professional Association of Part-time Academics (PAPTA) to support their sessional (casual and contract) academic staff;
              o    UniSA resources support on the web is heavily text based, uniform in colour, and there is a lot of information - useful information – but difficult to
                   navigate;
              o    RMIT’s learning and teaching support and opportunities for professional learning are fragmented both in online presentation and structure/function, which
                   undoubtedly presents confusion for users
              o    Generally there are numerous on line resources available to UniSA & RMIT teachers and students, however more attention could be given to the language,
                   profiles and accessibility they have to them.


3.6        ATN teaching and learning policies and programs: analysis and opportunities
This cursory review of ATN universities’ teaching and learning related frameworks, strategic plans, policies, programs and resources indicates that:
   1. These institutional strategic policy and strategies could underpin the development of indicators of teaching and learning quality to progress to
       academic standards and advance learning and teaching excellence.
   2. There are strong similarities between the ATN members in the nature and content of the support and systems provided to enhance teaching and
       learning.
   3. These similarities suggest that these universities could readily lend themselves to benchmarking their teaching and learning inputs, processes, outputs
       and outcomes.
   4. The differences between the ATN and high performing learning and teaching universities appear to be a function of form and style in the public
       presentation of their policies and programs.
   5. Deeper analysis of practice (policy implementation) between universities may reveal differences (e.g. strengths and weaknesses) that could be used to
       inform change in policy and practice to advance learning and teaching excellence at ATN universities.


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                      APPENDIX B
                                                                                  Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model




3.6.1 Learning from the two international universities and their practice
Some Similarities:
Generally, all the universities in this report
   • have a learning and teaching-related ‘concentration’ that supports professional learning and development of academic staff. Frequently, this
      ‘concentration/ unit’ is also responsible for supporting the recognition of teaching excellence through e.g. awards and/or fellowships;
   • provide diverse resources and support for academic staff e.g. online ‘tips’ for teaching; links to literature and/or research projects; ongoing programs
      of professional learning and development; conference-type forums; academic career advice; etc.; However, it seems some Australian based
      institutions have developed more comprehensive text based resources to support their academic staff than Oxford and Harvard (e.g. University of
      Wollongong’s ‘Teaching @ UoW’ document produced by the institution’s Centre for educational Development and Interactive Resources [CEDIR]
      University of Western Australia, part of the TQI Pilot Project: ‘Teaching and Learning at The University of Western Australia’ document);
   • have identified the need to improve, advance, recognise and reward learning and teaching excellence within their organisation and that this need
      frequently informs the development of policy and strategic action/initiatives to support the identified priority.

Some Differences:
Both University of Oxford and Harvard University
    • don’t give a high profile to learning and teaching on the institution’s homepage. Generally, the Australian universities in this report are more
       transparent and better in providing information on the institutional direction, strategies, and functions related to learning and teaching activity within
       their institutions.
use the term ‘teaching and learning’ rather than the Australian phrase of ‘learning and teaching’. This difference does reflect a difference in the focus of
support as well as the operating paradigm of ‘professional development’ rather than ‘professional learning’. It might also explain the difference in the -Data
on community engagement programs
    • profile/positioning of learning and teaching function on homepages i.e. Australian context has high profile for Learning and Teaching functional units
       compared to the two international examples.
    • have a consolidated, comprehensive and professionally coordinated effort in supporting the learning and teaching function, particularly within their
       ‘concentration/ unit’. This provides for a more coherent way to present services, programs, resources, awards, etc to staff (once you find the
       appropriate url). This is not always the case with the ATN members. A good comparison of similar practice within the Australian context is
       represented by University of Wollongong: www.uow.edu.au/about/teaching/index.html




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
    •    have a strong pedagogically-related research function within their teaching ‘concentration/unit’ to support and develop their work and initiatives/
         programs etc. For example, Harvard has the Cabot Postdoctoral Fellowship program to develop the pedagogical research and knowledge to inform
         practice. This exploration of research/teaching nexus is not as readily visible/active in the Australian context explored in this paper.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                  APPENDIX B
                                                                              Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

4.       ACER ‘ATN Academic Standards Model’ Report Recommendations: Action Plans
The following section outlines further opportunities presented by the ACER (2007) report for the ATN’s consideration. The ACER Report’s (2007)
Recommendation Nos. 5-8 identified some of the ‘options for developing practice’ which most readily lend themselves to immediate ATN consideration and
action. These recommendations are now considered in this section of the report. Each recommendation is examined from the perspective of the current state
of play among the ATN members; and then an action plan is suggested for consideration.


We believe that the development of a set of ATN graduate capabilities for benchmarking purposes should be the first priority (see ACER Recommendation
No. 5- Priority 1A below). This task is an antecedent to the development of an ATN ‘Employer Feedback’ tool and process (refer to ACER Recommendation
No. 7- Priority 1B). Recommendation No. 6 should also be an early priority whilst Recommendation No. 8 may not be of immediate concern to ATN
members.

In summary, the suggested priority for implementation of the ACER recommendations are:
    • 1a) ACER Recommendation No. 5: Graduate Attributes
    • 1b) ACER Recommendation No. 7: Industry Engagement: Employer Feedback Tool
    • 2) ACER Recommendation No. 6: Assessment
    • 3) ACER Recommendation No. 8: Development of e-portfolios for students and staff.

ATN members are asked to consider these as suggestions for progressing these ACER recommendations and to discuss their responses in the teleconference
scheduled for early December, 2007. In doing so, we acknowledge that member universities are at different stages of development in regard to these
recommendations.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX B
                                                                                      Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


ACER Recommendation No. 5 (Priority 1A)
ACER Report Recommendation No. 5
ATN institutions should develop their capacity to measure and hence assure general graduate capabilities including work readiness. To provide a
foundation, a comparable ATN set of graduate capabilities should be defined and embedded into learning and teaching. Assessments should be developed to
measure graduates’ capability, which may include routine assessments, feedback from employers, or an objective test
Current State Summary            Underpinning this recommendation is the concept that there are opportunities for and benefits in sharing common assessment of
                                  similar generic capabilities across the ATN institutions. This notion of sharing common assessment can only occur if there are points
                                  of similarity amongst the ATN’s graduate capabilities. One way of exploring the concept of sharing common assessment is to
                                  establish whether the ATN institutions have generic capability statements, which could then be used for comparison and
                                  benchmarking purposes.

                                  The method used to determine whether an ATN institution has generic capabilities was to search each ATN website using the
                                  keyword search: ‘generic capabilities’. These searches readily identified a generic capability statement if one existed for the
                                  institution. Using this method, three ATN institutions have generic capabilities: Curtin, QUT and UniSA. See Table 12. However,
                                  recently (Sept 2007) the RMIT Academic Board approved a list of seven generic graduate attributes identified in the organisation’s
                                  Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010. These have been added to the data presented in Tables 12-14.


                                  Table 12: Generic Capabilities at ATN Institutions
                                    ATN institution      Presence of generic capabilities      Absence of generic capabilities
                                    Curtin               
                                    QUT                  
                                    RMIT                                                        Each program develops its set of capabilities
                                                                                               Recent approval (Sept 2007) of generic graduate attributes
                                    UniSA                
                                    UTS                                                         Programs develop sets of capabilities

                                  As shown in Table 12, RMIT and UTS currently do not have generic capability statements overarching all their programs. However,
                                  their programs have their individual sets of capabilities. However, since RMIT has recently instituted generic graduate attributes it
                                  will now need to explore ways to implement these into its practices.

                                  Table 13 below, provides a list of the generic capabilities for each of the institutions that have a statement of overarching capabilities.
                                  As can be seen, these generic capabilities broadly reveal the qualities, skills and understandings a university community believes are



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                   APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                            important for its students to develop during their study. The generic capabilities reflect attributes that develop students to actively
                            participate in society as individuals and contribute to shaping society as members of their profession.

                            Table 13: List of Generic Capabilities Adopted By ATN Institutions
                             Curtin                      QUT                        UniSA                                               RMIT
                             1. Apply discipline               1. Knowledge and skills           1. Operates effectively with and       1. work-ready
                             knowledge, principles and         pertinent to a particular         upon a body of knowledge of
                             concept                           discipline or professional area   sufficient depth to begin
                                                                                                 professional practice
                             2. Think critically, creatively   2. Critical, creative and         2. Is prepared for life-long           2. active learners
                             and reflectively                  analytical thinking, and          learning in pursuit of personal
                                                               effective problem-solving         development and excellence in
                                                                                                 professional practice
                             3. Access, evaluate and           3. Effective communication        3. Is an effective problem solver,     3. lifelong learners
                             synthesise information            in a variety of contexts and      capable of applying logical,
                                                               modes                             critical, and creative thinking to a
                                                                                                 range of problems
                             4. Communicate effectively        4. The capacity for life-long     4. Can work both autonomously          4. global in outlook and
                                                               learning                          and collaboratively as a               competence
                                                                                                 professional
                             5. Use technologies               5. The ability to work            5. Is committed to ethical action      5. culturally and
                             appropriately                     independently and                 and social responsibility as a         socially aware
                                                               collaboratively                   professional and citizen
                             6. Utilise lifelong learning      6. Social and ethical             6. Communicates effectively in         6. innovative
                             skills                            responsibility and an             professional practice as a member
                                                               understanding of indigenous       of the community
                                                               and international perspectives
                             7. Recognise and apply            7. Characteristics of self-       7. Demonstrates international          7. environmentally
                             international perspectives        reliance and leadership           perspectives as a professional and     conscious
                                                                                                 as a citizen
                             8. Demonstrate intercultural
                             awareness and understanding
                             9. Apply professional skills




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX B
                                                                                Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                            Table 14 presents a comparative analysis of the generic capabilities across the three ATN institutions with capability statements. As
                            shown, there are many points of similarity amongst the three universities. This indicates the potential for the ATN to share a common
                            statement of generic capabilities for purposes of benchmarking and standards.

                            Table 14: Comparison of Generic Capabilities Across the ATN Institutions
                             ATN Capability                        Curtin            QUT                                  UniSA                 RMIT
                                                                               [Capability No. ]     [Capability No. ]    [Capability No. ]     [Capability No. ]
                             Discipline relevant knowledge and skills          1, 5 & 9              1                    1                     1
                             Life-long learning capacity                       6                     4, 7                 2                     3
                             Effective problem solver and critical,            2, 3                  2                    3                     2, 3, 6
                             creative and reflective practitioner
                             Autonomous and collaborative learner and                                5                    4                     1, 2, 3
                             practitioner
                             Commitment to ethical action and social           7, 8                  6                    5, 7                  5, 7
                             responsibility
                             Effective communicator as a professional          4                     3, 7                 6                     1, 4
                             and citizen
                             Considers international perspectives as a         7, 8                  6                    7                     4, 5, 7
                             professional and citizen
Proposed Strategy

                            This recommendation consists of two major foci:
                            a) Define and embed a comparable ATN set of graduate attributes
                            The comparative analysis of four of the five ATN institutions that have generic capabilities demonstrates the similarities of the
                            capabilities across these institutions. This suggests that if there is a willingness to adopt ATN generic capabilities there is a possibility
                            that this could be achieved, as recommended by the ACER Report.

                            Whilst there are sound reasons for developing generic ATN capabilities, there is a need to discuss the purposes for proceeding.
                            Scanning the ATN websites, the debate for capabilities is strong but there is a need to identify i) for whom they are being generated,
                            ii) what functions they would perform, iii) and how will they be implemented, particularly in relation to embedding them into
                            learning and teaching practice.

                            Should the ATN commit to this recommendation it should build on the work of the previous significant ATN study Generic
                            Capabilities of ATN University Graduates (2000) by Bowden, Hart, King, Trigwell & Watts. This report provides a literature review
                            of generic capabilities, a framework for action, and case studies that could be used as baseline data to work and build on this process,



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                                in conjunction with recent developments from the ATN institutions.



                                b) Develop assessments that are able to measure graduates’ capability, and may include feedback from employers, or an objective
                                test
                                Should development of ATN generic capabilities be agreed as a useful project, then its implementation should be evaluated/ assessed.
                                Therefore, as discussed in the ACER Report, a program of implementation should incorporate assessment of students working
                                towards these capabilities. An implementation plan needs to consider how purposes, functions and implementation will be aligned for
                                meaningful data generation and analysis. This includes building capacity of the institutions to integrate the ATN capability statement
                                into the daily operations of curriculum development, learning, teaching and assessment in authentic and meaningful ways.

                                A key component of this work will be to determine how we can substantiate that graduates have these attributes and the relative
                                merits of tools (e.g. GSA and US CLA tests) that are currently available.

Costs/Resources                 A small team (4-8) with cross institution representation to develop a generic capability statement with recommendations for their
                                application, monitoring and evaluation. An initial budget of $10,000 is sought from the ATN for the relevant officers to meet and
                                progress this work.

Outcomes/Benefits               1. Development of an ATN graduate capability statement
                                    • Provides a way for branding the uniqueness of the ATN’s institutions
                                    • Continues to build/reinforce a shared understanding of the values/philosophy that is co-created within the ATN
                                2. Develops and provides a unique set of measures for an academic standard related to the two of the four dimensions critical for
                                quality learning and teaching identified within the TQI Project.
Timeframes                      1. Development of the ATN generic capability statement by use of ‘best fit’ from existing similarities (Jan - Mar 2008)
                                2. Development of advice for an implementation plan and possible measures to assess capabilities (Mar 2008)
                                3. Review of advice by ATN DVC/PVC and action on implementation/ trial (Apr-July 2008)

Link with dimensions critical       •   Engagement and Learning Community
for quality learning and            •   Assessment
teaching (Carrick Institute         •   Also, refer to Table 6 for examples of possible indicators that could support this project.
TQI Project)




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                        APPENDIX B
                                                                                    Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


ACER Recommendation No. 6 (Priority 2)
ACER Report Recommendation No. 6
ATN institutions should undertake a systematic and multifaceted review of student assessment and reporting. Such a review could develop ATN capacity to:
monitor student input standards, produce validated assessment tasks, develop moderation processes to ensure the equivalence of learning standards, develop
comparable curriculum standards, develop common reporting metrics, develop transparent statements of attainment and conduct routine analyses of student
performance data
Current State Summary             To determine what assessment related policies are available within the ATN institutions a key word search of respective websites
                                   using terms: assessment, assessment policy, assessment policy and procedures revealed relevant key policy documents. As shown in
                                   Table 15, the ATN institutions have been actively reviewing their assessment policy and procedures with most offering new and
                                   revised policy and procedures in 2007. With the exception of RMIT, all ATN institutions have developed a ‘manual’ that houses all
                                   their assessment related policies and procedures in the ‘one place’. This is an important development with respect to implementation
                                   as it ensures that teaching staff and students are able to access readily the information.

                                   Table 15: Current status of assessment related policies
                                     ATN Institution           Assessment Policy and Procedures status
                                     Curtin                    Assessment Policies and Procedures 2007 (V07.5.3 – May 2007): University Manual
                                     QUT                       Assessment Policy; approval date by Academic Board 26/09/2003; Date of next review
                                                               01/07/2007
                                     RMIT                      Several assessment policies and procedures on assessment, student progress and appeals;
                                                               currently reviewing some of the policies
                                     UniSA                     Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual 2007
                                     UTS                       Coursework Assessment Policy and Procedures Manual; latest revision by Academic Board:
                                                               Aug 2007


Proposed Strategy                  A small ATN team representative team should be established to:
                                       • Prepare an analysis of Assessment Policy and Procedures across the ATN institutions to identify similarities and differences;
                                       • Utilise ideas from the ACER Report and the Carrick Institute TQI Project, to identify and develop advice on possibilities for
                                           shared areas related to assessment policy, procedures and practices that could be worked on/ trialled to inform shared
                                           assessment practices in the ATN Academic Standards Model.

Costs/Resources                    Establish a small ATN team (2-4) to work on the capacity for sharing assessment related practices across the ATN institutions. An
                                   initial budget of $10,000 is sought for the relevant officers to meet and progress this work.


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX B
                                                                                 Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

Outcomes/Benefits               Development of sharing assessment related practices across the ATN provides opportunities for:
                                   • Determining what areas of assessment related activities that would be mutually beneficial to share across the ATN
                                       institutions;
                                   • Development of relevant comparable assessment measures;
                                   • Sharing of costs to develop common assessment tools, if these are seen as appropriate;
                                   • Supporting innovative assessment to improve teaching and learning across the ATN.

Timeframes                      Establish the ATN team to investigate assessment related policy and procedures and provide advice on possible areas for cross
                                institutional assessment related activities. (Feb - Apr 2008)

Link with dimensions critical      • Assessment
for quality learning and           • Institutional Climate and Systems
teaching (Carrick Institute        Also Table 5 for examples of indicators that could inform development of this project.
TQI Project)




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                           APPENDIX B
                                                                                       Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


ACER Recommendation No. 7 (Priority 1B)
ACER Report Recommendation No. 7
ATN institutions should develop a systematic approach to monitoring and enhancing industry involvement in learning. Institutions might: highlight the
important role that employers, industries and working professional play in ensuring the quality of higher education; enhance the formative input provided by
industry into educational design, delivery, assessment and review; strengthen or builds relationships with professional bodies; and obtain more systematic
forms of feedback from graduate employers.
Current State              Evaluations of the quality of teaching and learning in universities have almost exclusively focused on the use of student and graduate
Summary                    satisfaction levels. Very little research has been undertaken regarding the views of other key stakeholders such as those of employers.

                            In its capacity as a Carrick TQI Pilot University, the University of South Australia has decided to develop, test, monitor, evaluate and report
                            on an “Employer Feedback” instrument and process that provides it with critical information about:
                                 1. Job readiness/employability of our University graduates
                                 2. Importance and ratings employers place on our graduate qualities and other learning outcomes, and
                                 3. Ways employers believe the University could improve its preparation of graduates for employment.

                            This project particularly falls within the TQI Institutional climate and systems dimension. ie the University believes it should have the
                            indicators and systems that inform it about employers’ needs and satisfaction levels with its graduates and to communicate, manage and
                            respond to that information appropriately. Furthermore, it examines the TQI Engagement and learning community dimension i.e. engagement
                            of industry, students and staff for developing work ready graduates.

                            This project supports various University teaching and learning priorities by helping to monitor, evaluate and report on information needs such
                            as:
                                • The relevance and importance of our ‘Graduate Qualities’ to employers;
                                • Their satisfaction with and ratings of those qualities and other learning outcomes;
                                • The success with which we are applying our corporate mission of ‘educating professionals’ and ‘engaging our communities’.
                                • How well, as an ATN member, we are practising our shared commitment to the ‘applied dimension of teaching’ .
                                • The success with which we are implementing Teaching and Learning Framework commitments to, “ The regular review of the
                                    disciplinary knowledge content against professional expectations…and that…UniSA considers the impact of its graduates to be
                                    manifest principally in their professional expertise (which could be assessed through employer satisfaction, high rates of entry to the
                                    professions, or career mobility within them.”) (p7)

                            Information sought could be according to:
                                • industry type,


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX B
                                                                                     Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                                •   nature of industry
                                •   business/size,
                                •   numbers and years of graduates employed,
                                •   roles/capacities in which graduates were employed,
                                •   disciplines of graduates,
                                •   graduate quality importance and satisfaction ratings,
                                •   other graduate learning outcomes sought
                                •   strengths of UniSA graduates,
                                •   extra training required,
                                •   comparisons of UniSA graduates with other university graduates,
                                •   preferred universities as source of graduates etc.

                            ATN universities have a shared commitment to community (including employer) engagement, practice based learning, to the professions, to
                            their students having graduate qualities and being job ready, with interests in both local and global environments. They would benefit from
                            an evaluation tool, model and process to measure, monitor and report on employer satisfaction with teaching and learning outcomes and
                            experiences.

Proposed Strategy           The UniSA’s Carrick Institute TQI Project Program Manager will oversee this research and model development as a component of their work
                            within that University. As this research would align with three of the four Carrick Institute TQI Project dimensions of quality teaching and
                            learning, it is proposed that the ATN delegates on the TQI Project (i.e. University of South Australia and RMIT) collaboratively work on
                            developing a tool and process that couldbe adopted/adapted by all ATN members. It could for instance have a core component that is
                            common to all ATN universities.

                            The key activities/issues associated with this project would be:
                               1. Developing a working party to oversee and assist with tool and process trial design, implementation, review and reporting.
                               2. Critically reviewing existing ‘employer feedback’ indicators, tools, language used and processes adopted in other universities.
                               3. Developing draft tool and process for consultation with key university and employer group stakeholders, data capture, analysis,
                                   reporting and information management.
                               4. Trialling application of tool and process with agreed industry groups/identified students/graduates cohort.
                               5. Monitoring, evaluating and reporting on trial findings.
                               6. Sharing developments with ATN members
                               7. Making recommendations and changes for future.

Costs/Resources             It is anticipated that the major costs associated with this initiative would be:
                            Travel and accommodation costs of the TQI Project Managers (UniSA & RMIT), and participating members of the ATN for 2 years =



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX B
                                                                                      Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                            $15,000

Outcomes/Benefits           The primary outcome would be research and a model which gives direction to measuring and reporting on employer ratings of the importance
                            and their satisfaction with graduate qualities and other learning outcomes.

                            The model, measures and evaluation tool developed would:
                               • Provide a consistent set of criteria for use within and across universities to determine employer teaching and learning satisfaction.
                               • Assist universities to negotiate program design and approval processes.
                               • Provide an important perspective on teaching quality and inform specific areas for change/improvement.
                               • Enhance the quality, relevance, efficiency and effectiveness of industry participation in universities.
                               • Generate objective data for evidence based dialogue between industry and universities.

Timeframes                  It is anticipated that this research and development would commence in January 2008 with a draft model available for trialling in the ATN
                            network in July 2008. This trial would be monitored over the following year with an evaluation report presented to ATN DVCs/PVCs (A) in
                            mid 2009

Link with dimensions            •     Engagement and Learning Community
critical for quality            •     Institutional Climate and Systems
learning and teaching
(Carrick Institute TQI
Project)




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                           APPENDIX B
                                                                                       Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model


ACER Recommendation No. 8 (Priority 3)
ACER Report Recommendation 8
ATN institutions should further develop their approach to documenting and developing education resources. They should design and implement a systematic
approach to the production of teaching portfolios and initiate the development of course portfolios.
Current State
Summary                    The current status of ATN activity associated with teaching and course portfolios was identified by performing key word searches on
                            respective websites for terms: teaching portfolios, teaching e-portfolios; course portfolios; course e-portfolios. The results are presented in
                            Table 16.

                            Table 16: Support for developing teaching and course portfolios
                             ATN Institution        Teaching and/or course portfolio related activity/ support
                             Curtin                    • Professional Portfolios – framework, policy, purposes and procedures for developing teaching
                                                                 portfolios
                                                            •    The Teaching and Learning Forums have a number of interesting papers presented around
                                                                 issues of creating e-portfolios for learning and teaching.
                             QUT                            •    Teaching Portfolios – limited information available
                                                            •    Student Portfolios – “ an online e-portfolio tool that students can use to document their
                                                                 academic, professional and personal development.”
                             RMIT                           •    Difficult to find – needed to use key word search “promotions” to identify guidelines for
                                                                 teaching, research and leadership portfolios;
                                                            •    New initiative: Campus LX being trialled semester 2, 2007: “Campus LX extends Blackboard
                                                                 with Blog, Wiki and ePortfolio functionality”;
                                                            •    Minimum Online Presence Policy will assist in course portfolio-type information being
                                                                 systematically documented.
                             UniSA                          •    Developing Teaching Portfolio – detailed guidelines provided
                             UTS                            •    Teaching Portfolio – detailed guidelines provided for development of Academic Portfolio
                                                            •    Developing Course Portfolios – detailed discussion of rationale for course portfolios and
                                                                 processes and advice for development of new course portfolios.

                            All the ATN institutions provide information on developing teaching portfolios. There is less information about the systematic development
                            and support for the concept of course portfolios. However, activities by QUT (student portfolios), RMIT (Campus LX) and UTS is of interest.

                            All institutions, with the exception of RMIT, carried their teaching portfolio and course portfolio related information from within their


RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX B
                                                                                      Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model
                            Learning and Teaching functions/units. RMIT’s guidelines on teaching portfolios were identified from within the promotions/ human
                            resources unit. The Campus LX initiative is housed within the RMIT’s Online Learning Hub environment.

Proposed Strategy           A small ATN team to assess and provide advice on the key directions/ priorities that could be developed as cross-institutional approaches to
                            develop and document education resources. This should also incorporate an investigation into the uptake of academic staff developing
                            teaching/course portfolios and identify key barriers and support mechanisms that influence the uptake of developing teaching/course
                            portfolios.

Costs/Resources             A small ATN team from Learning and Teaching functions (4-8) to meet and undertake the work, facilitate focus groups/interviews with key
                            academic staff and generate the advice from their analysis. An initial budget of $15,000 is sought for the relevant officers to meet and
                            progress this work.

Outcomes/Benefits           The key benefit from this investigation would be enhancing the quality of developing, documenting and sharing education resources within
                            an electronic environment. If this process is coupled with supporting quality learning and teaching mechanisms (such as supporting
                            mentoring, creation of communities of practice) then this could also improve learning and teaching through collegial learning and sharing,
                            particularly while developing course e-portfolios.

Timeframes                  Establish small ATN team to work on analysis and generate advice (Jul - Dec 08).

Link with dimensions            •   Engagement and Learning Community
critical for quality            •   Institutional Climate and Systems
learning and teaching
(Carrick Institute TQI
Project)




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model



5.       Recommendations
This report was prepared to assist the ATN DVCs/PVCs(A) who commissioned the ACER ATN
Academic Standards Model report, to respond to and implement its recommendations. It is
proposed that:

     1. ATN members adopt the recommendations made in Table 5 for the ACER report
        Recommendation Nos. 1-4.

     2. If Recommendation No. 1 is accepted then the future focus of this project will be the
        development of an ATN framework for advancing learning and teaching excellence, which
        would broaden from the initial focus of minimum standards to incorporate the aspirational
        goal of enhancing learning and teaching quality. ATN members should affirm if it is
        interested in this broader focus.

     3. ATN members should consider the proposed action plans to advance the implementation of
        report Recommendation Nos. 5-8 (see Section Four) to inform the development of an ATN
        framework to advance learning and teaching quality.

     4. ATN Academic Standards Model development is not contingent upon the Carrick Institute
        Teaching Quality Indicators Project, but it should give close consideration to its
        developments. It is therefore proposed that any further ‘ATN academic standards’
        developments should give close attention to the emerging Carrick Institute TQI Framework
        and the associated indicators and measures as they have the potential to be interdependent.

     5. PVCs/DVCs(A) are asked to be prepared to respond to and indicate their support and/or
        priorities for these suggested actions in the teleconference in early December.

     6. ATN members should consider whether they want to develop a framework for the learning
        and teaching activity of academic work OR to develop a framework that incorporates all
        aspects of academic work. If the latter position is taken, then further work is required to
        develop possible indicators to expand the framework across the academic work of learning
        and teaching, research and scholarship, and service and leadership. This latter position is not
        recommended by the authors of this report because the framework will lose its focus and try
        to be all things to all people.

     7. If there is support for developing a shared ATN framework to advance learning and teaching
        excellence, a discussion of resources (e.g. staff either in kind/secondment to action project;
        travel between ATN universities; research activity; data gathering and analysis) to support
        moving the agenda forward needs to occur.




RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX B
                            Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model

References
AC Nielsen Research Services. (2000), Employer Satisfaction with Graduate Skills: Research Report,
February, Department for Education, Training and Youth Affairs. Canberra.

Barrie, S., Ginns, P., & Symons, R. (2007), Student surveys on teaching and learning: Interim Report, May,
Carrick Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education.

Birrell, R., & Rapson, V. (2006), Clearing the Myths Away: Higher Education’s Place in Meeting Workforce
Demands. Centre for Population and Urban Research, Monash University, paper presented for the
Dusseldorp Skills Forum, October.

Boyer, E.L. (1990), Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of the Professoriate, Special Report, Princeton, NJ,
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

Chalmers, D. (Aug 2007) A review of Australian and international quality systems and indicators of learning
and teaching, The Carrick Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, Chippendale, NSW, p.
79, Table 3.2;
www.carrickinstitute.edu.au/carrick/webdav/users/siteadmin/public/t&lindicators_report_v3_oct07.pdf

Coates, H. (2007), ‘ATN Academic Standards Model’ report to the Australian Technology Network of
Universities. ACER.

Jones, J. (2007), ‘Generic Attributes: An Agenda for Reform or Control’, Changing Identities. University of
Sydney.

Ramsden, P. (1991), ‘A performance indicator of teaching quality in higher education; the course experience
questionnaire’, Studies in Higher Education, Vol 16, No. 2 pp 129-150.

Richardson, A. & Kabanoff, B. (2003), Qualitative Analysis of Graduate Comments and the Development of
Course Domains, paper presented at the 2003 Joint NZARE/AARE Conference, Auckland.

University websites
Australian Technology Network of Universities: www.atn.edu.au
Curtin University of Technology: www.curtin.edu.au
Harvard University: www.harvard.edu
Monash University: www.monash.edu.au
Queensland University of Technology: www.qut.edu.au
RMIT University: www.rmit.edu.au
University of NSW: www.unsw.edu.au
University of Oxford: www.ox.ac.uk
University of Queensland: www.uq.edu.au
University of SA: www.unisa.edu.au
University of Technology Sydney: www.uts.edu.au
University of Wollongong: www.uow.edu.au



RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
    APPENDIX C


Learning and Teaching Unit, DVC Academic Portfolio


RMIT Assessment Standards Project
Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report
& Evaluation

Part of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s Special Initiative: Teaching Quality Indicators project.
RMIT University is one of the eight pilot universities participating in Stage 2 of the project that is piloting the
framework of indicators. For more information visit: www.rmit.edu.au/tqi




Prepared by
Dr Josephine Lang, RMIT Learning & Teaching Fellow; TQI Project Officer
October 2008




                                                                                                            80
    RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX C
                                Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Contents
CONTENTS .................................................................................................................................................................... 81
1       CONTEXT .............................................................................................................................................................. 82
    1.1     THE TEACHING QUALITY INDICATORS PROJECT .............................................................................................. 82
    1.2     EMERGENT FOCUS ON ASSESSMENT TQI DIMENSION AND THE FORUM INITIATIVE ......................................... 82
       1.2.1 The Forum .................................................................................................................................................. 83
2       FORUM DELEGATES SPEAK ........................................................................................................................... 85
    2.1     DISCUSSION THEME 1: CURRENT UNDERSTANDINGS AND PRACTICES OF ASSESSMENT .................................... 86
    2.2     DISCUSSION THEME 2 ...................................................................................................................................... 90
       2.2.1 Overall reactions: comparing RMIT to current HE assessment policy context .......................................... 90
            2.2.1.1         What might RMIT learn from the current HE assessment policy context? .......................................................... 91
       2.2.2 Feedback on RMIT’s existing overarching assessment principles and charter .......................................... 91
    2.3     DISCUSSION THEME 3 ...................................................................................................................................... 93
       2.3.1 Purpose and scope of the assessment manual............................................................................................. 94
       2.3.2 Resources to support implementation ......................................................................................................... 94
       2.3.3 Areas to develop assessment standards ...................................................................................................... 94
       2.3.4 Priority areas for action: recommendations by Forum Delegates ............................................................. 95
3       EVALUATION ...................................................................................................................................................... 97
    3.1     DELEGATES’ PERSPECTIVE ............................................................................................................................... 97
       3.1.1 Reflection on Forum Program .................................................................................................................... 97
            3.1.1.1         Introductory briefings session .............................................................................................................................. 97
            3.1.1.2         Assessment in University contexts session .......................................................................................................... 98
            3.1.1.3         Workshop session ................................................................................................................................................ 99
        3.1.2       Reflection on the Forum organisation ........................................................................................................ 99
            3.1.2.1         Pre-Forum Reading Pack ..................................................................................................................................... 99
       3.1.3 Summary ................................................................................................................................................... 100
    3.2     EDUCATIONAL CONSULTANT’S PERSPECTIVE ................................................................................................. 101
       3.2.1 Engagement of an external consultant ...................................................................................................... 101
       3.2.2 Key observations and advice..................................................................................................................... 101
4       CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS ..................................................................................................... 106
    4.1     CONCLUDING OBSERVATIONS ........................................................................................................................ 106
    4.2     RECOMMENDATIONS ...................................................................................................................................... 106
       4.2.1 Recommended priorities for action in the short term (to December 2008) .............................................. 108
APPENDIX A: RMIT ASSESSMENT STANDARDS PROJECT PLAN ............................................................... 110
APPENDIX B: THE FORUM DELEGATE LIST .................................................................................................... 112
APPENDIX C: FORUM PROGRAM ........................................................................................................................ 116
APPENDIX D: FORUM PRESENTATIONS ............................................................................................................ 118
APPENDIX E: THE PRE-FORUM READING PACK ............................................................................................ 119
APPENDIX F: FORUM NOTEBOOK ....................................................................................................................... 120
APPENDIX G: FORUM EVALUATION INSTRUMENT ...................................................................................... 121
APPENDIX H: CONSULTANT’S REPORT ON THE REVIEW OF THE ASSESSMENT STANDARDS
FORUM ......................................................................................................................................................................... 124
APPENDIX I: FORUM RESOURCES ...................................................................................................................... 129




                                                                                                                                                                                           81
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Context

The Teaching Quality Indicators Project
RMIT is one of eight pilot universities participating in Stage 2 of the national Australian Learning
and Teaching Council’s initiative that is trialling the indicator framework developed within the
Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Project. The overarching purpose of the national project is to
reward and recognise quality teaching in Higher Education through systematic implementation of
indicators and metrics on teaching and teacher effectiveness.

The initial phase of the project at RMIT (Aug 2007-Feb 2008) involved auditing the learning and
teaching institutional context within RMIT to identify areas of strength and areas for improvement
against the TQI Project dimensions of quality teaching that are:
    • Institutional climate and systems
    • Diversity and inclusivity
    • Engagement and learning community
    • Assessment.

Such a systematic approach helped to identify the focus for the TQI Project at RMIT situated within
its institutional policy and strategic directions context and made links to, and shaped, other related
projects-in-development such as the Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN)
Academic Standards project and RMIT’s Teaching Intensive Pathway for promotion to academic
level D and E. For further information on the TQI Project visit: www.rmit.edu.au/tqi



Emergent focus on Assessment TQI Dimension and the Forum
  initiative
As a consequence of the preliminary audit, research and policy development undertaken as part of
the initial TQI project design at RMIT, inevitably the emergent focus rested upon assessment
because the area continued to appear as an area in need of improvement, particularly when
comparing our policy context with other institutions (eg the work undertaken as part of the ATN
benchmarking activity for the ATN Academic Standards Project). By March 2008 a project plan for
focussing on the Assessment TQI dimension of quality teaching at RMIT during 2008 was
developed (refer to Appendix A: RMIT Assessment Standards Project Plan).

The overall purpose of the RMIT’s Assessment Standards Project was to work towards improving
assessment both at policy and practice contexts across the university to enhance the student learning
experience. The approach taken in the project plan was to systematically collect data from within
and beyond RMIT on assessment policy and practice to inform the redevelopment of RMIT’s
assessment policies and support change and innovation in assessment practices at the local School
level in programs and courses.

The RMIT Assessment Standards Project – Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum
(on 5 Aug 2008) was initiated to achieve the goal of capturing current understandings and practice
of assessment across the institution from staff (mainly academic) with key responsibilities and/ or
interest in assessment and learning and teaching. Furthermore, it was designed to gain feedback on
the proposal to develop an RMIT Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual.

Over 140 formal invitations by email went out to Deans of Academic Development, Heads of
School, Directors of Teaching and Learning within Schools, Project Leaders of assessment related
                                                                                                   82
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

RMIT Learning and Teaching Investment Fund projects, key teaching staff and leaders in VET,
recent graduates from the Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and Learning, and key staff in
policy and planning, student services and academic registrar’s group. In addition, Deans of
Academic Development and Directors Learning and Teaching were asked to nominate key staff that
were to be also invited. From this invitation list, approximately 20 staff sent apologies as they were
unable to attend due to teaching and/or prior commitments, 74 staff registered for the Forum and on
the day 67 staff participated in the Forum, representing the diversity of all three academic colleges
(ie Business; Science, Engineering and Technology; Design and Social Context; refer to Appendix
B for the Forum Delegate List and the College structure).

The Forum
The purpose of the Forum was to engage key academic staff in re-visioning assessment policy and
practices at RMIT. Some key questions were posed to help focus the work by delegates at the
Forum included:
    • What are our current assessment policies and practices?
    • What are our assessment standards?
    • How do we know our assessment policies and practices are reflecting quality?
    • How do our assessment policies and practices compare with other institutions?
    • What are the gaps/ silences?
    • What measures do we put in place to ensure we sustain quality standards for assessment
        dimension?
    • Identify case studies, exemplars and issues related to good practice in assessment

The program (refer to Appendix C) provided a balance of briefings about the RMIT Assessment
Standards Project from multiple perspectives, keynote presentation and then facilitation of the
workshop sessions by A/Prof Janice Orrell, an educational consultant with assessment expertise
(refer to Appendix D for forum presentations). A Pre-Forum Reading Pack was distributed to
Delegates in the week prior to the Forum. This resource included the draft Assessment Manual to
assess the concept with staff as well as a preliminary comparative analysis of the Australian Higher
Education assessment policy context (see Appendix E for the Pre-Forum Reading Pack resources).
Collation and analysis of the data captured from the Forum’s workshop session and evaluation are
presented in the next section of this report.

The TQI Project Officer planned and coordinated the Forum to align with the RMIT Assessment
Standards Project plan. Planning also incorporated feedback from the RMIT TQI Project Team
(DVC Academic and sponsor of the TQI Project at RMIT, Prof Jim Barber; and Acting Director
Learning and Teaching Unit, Mr Amgad Louka) and the educational consultant (A/Prof Janice
Orrell).




                                                                                                   83
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation




                                                                                         84
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Forum Delegates Speak
This section of the report represents the discussions held by delegates at the workshop session
during the Forum. Delegates were organised at round tables in Portfolio groupings to facilitate the
act of discussion at the workshop session. Seven groups were established at the Forum on the day,
which were:
    • 1 x Mixed group
    • 1 x Vocational Education & Training (VET) group (across the academic colleges)
    • 2 x Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) College groups
    • 1 x Business College group
    • 2 x Design and Social Context (DSC) College groups.

As identified in Table 2.2, the workshop session was centred around three key discussion themes.
Each group was asked to record their discussion in a specifically prepared Notebook (see Appendix
                                          F: Forum Notebook). These Notebooks were collected at
                                          the end of the Forum and form the basis of this report
                                          section. The discussion themes focussed the dialogue of
                                          the groups to think about
                                               • RMIT’s current assessment practice and look for
                                                   examples of good practice
                                               • RMIT’s current assessment principles and gain
                                                   feedback on their relevance
                                               • how we might re-vision our assessment policies
                                                   and create an assessment manual for the RMIT
       community.

Finally, the groups were asked to identify up to three recommendations to engage the RMIT
Learning Communities with the new assessment policy and procedures manual to advance learning
and teaching.

Forum Notebook comments made by the groups in this report section are colour coded to assist in
monitoring the diversity of group input. Hence you will find that data presented in tables within this
section of the report are colour coded as indicated in Table 2.1. Throughout the report discussion
and analysis of comments and issues raised by Forum Delegates are supported by presenting the
groups’ actual statements recorded in the Forum Notebooks. If groups recorded any emphasis in
their Notebook responses, these have been reproduced in the reporting of the data.



Table 2.1: Data from Forum Notebooks are colour coded in this report
Forum Delegate Group                                   Colour coded responses
Mixed group                                            Violet
VET                                                    Black
SET 1                                                  Bright green
SET 2                                                  Green
BUS                                                    Orange
DSC 1                                                  Blue
DSC 2                                                  Sky blue



                                                                                                   85
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                   APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Table 2.2: The discussion themes and questions that guided group discussions in workshop session
                                                Sub-questions
Discussion Theme 1:                     How does your Program/ School/ Portfolio assessment practices
Current understandings and practices of correlate with the current RMIT policies as collated in the RMIT
                                        Guide to Assessment: A Proposed Framework?
assessment                              Please provide examples to illustrate:
                                                - where the policies are being implemented well; and why are they
                                                successful
                                                - what policies (or parts of) are not useful/ practical’ and explain
                                                why
                                                - any gaps in the current assessment policy guide; and should these
                                                be addressed an why?
                                                - any assessment initiatives in your Program/ School/ Portfolio that
                                                are exploring good/ new ways of thinking about or doing
                                                assessment; and list contact people and their initiatives for
                                                potential follow up for case studies.

Discussion Theme 2:                             What are your group’s reflections on the Assessment Manual
Overarching assessment philosophy and           descriptions, philosophies and principles captured in the
                                                environmental scan of the Higher Education assessment policy
principles to guide and frame our               context?
assessment policy and practice context          - what are your overall reactions?
                                                - what do you like? Dislike? Why?
                                                - what do you think might be useful for us to consider as we
                                                develop our concept of the RMIT assessment manual? Why?
                                                Please review RMIT’s Overarching Assessment Principles and
                                                Assessment Charter using the Plus Minus Interesting Table.
                                                Any recommendations for change? Why?
Discussion Theme 3:                             What are your group’s thoughts on
RMIT Assessment Policy & Procedures             i) purpose & scope of the assessment manual for RMIT?
                                                ii) role/ place of resources to support staff/ students implementing
Manual and Implementation Plan                  assessment policy and procedures?
                                                iii) what areas of assessment might we nominate to work on to
                                                develop assessment standards across the university? across the
                                                ATN?
                                                List three recommendations that your group would like to propose
                                                in order to engage RMIT Learning Communities with the new
                                                assessment policy and procedures manual and advance learning
                                                and teaching excellence.

It was planned that each group would work through each of the three discussion themes during the
one hour workshop ie 20 minutes for each theme. However on the day the session was reduced to
about 45 minutes and for this reason the groups were asked to work out which theme/s they wanted
to tackle within the given time of the session. Consequently most groups discussed and completed
one or two themes within the Notebook.



Discussion Theme 1: Current understandings and practices of
   assessment
This discussion theme attempted to capture the current understandings and practices of assessment
across the university. Four of the seven groups completed this discussion theme in their respective
Notebooks. As shown in Figure 2.1 the responses were fairly evenly spread across the four key
areas with the exception of the query related to ‘gaps in the draft assessment guide’. This area
seemed to attract the most feedback from staff.



                                                                                                                86
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                            APPENDIX C
                                        Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Figure 2.1: Summary of key issues raised in Discussion Theme 1: Current understandings and practices of
assessment at RMIT

                              14
   No. of coding references




                              12
                              10
                              8
                              6
                              4
                              2
                              0
                                      successful       areas in need of   gaps in draft guide   potential egs of gd
                                   implementation of     improvement                                 practice
                                        policy
                                                                 Coding category




Analysing the responses for each of the four key areas of Discussion Theme 1 identified that staff
generally felt that they complied with the institution’s assessment policies and procedures. However
there were some concerns raised related to how the academic staff interpreted and then
implemented the assessment policies (refer to Table 2.3). Queries raised issues of consistency of
policy implementation across School/s and/or institution and the need for sharing assessment
practices with each other; to learn from each other and develop a variety of models or practices (e.g.
moderation) that can be used appropriately in different contexts.

A number of issues emerged associated with areas in need of improvement (see Table 2.3). One
issue raised was that there might be potential conflict between AQTF and aspects of the RMIT
assessment policy; although further details were not provided. The issue of grades and grading was
also mentioned, particularly in defining assessment load consistency between course/ programs; for
example, what constitutes appropriate assessment load or standard for a 12 credit point
undergraduate Higher Education course within RMIT? Another area explored in discussions is the
way assessment is conceptualised and practised as a result of
    • implementing the Learning and Teaching Strategy with its emphasis on learner centred
        focus eg
           o negotiated assessment in a negotiated curriculum context
           o cross-course assessment (inter/multi/trans disciplinary learning and teaching)
    • implementing new policy directions such as Work Integrated Learning (WIL) policy;
    • changing learning and teaching contexts such as large classes.
These new ways of thinking and doing assessment reflects an increasing understanding of the
complexity of learning and teaching that requires the engagement of the RMIT academic
community (both staff and students) with change: both its challenges and opportunities.

As depicted in Figure 2.1 and Table 2.3, staff commented on a variety of gaps in the draft
assessment guide. In general, there was a call for greater detail to guide academic staff in the areas
of assessment design. This incorporated the need for
    • further guidance on designing innovative and appropriate assessment
    • resource development and support for academic staff to engage with new ways of thinking
        and doing assessment eg exemplars, case studies, sharing of practices, encourage
        scholarship of teaching and learning
    • encouragement of innovation in assessment and sharing these practices
                                                                                                                      87
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

    •    developing standards in assessment eg consistency of expectations of students in a 12 credit
         point course across RMIT’s undergraduate programs; role and practice of supplementary
         assessment; integration of employability skills.

The Forum Delegates also suggested that staff lacked recognition of the Principles of Assessment
section of the draft guide even though they have been in existence since 2001 (Overarching
Assessment Principles) and 2003 (Assessment Charter). This points to the broader issue of
communication and policy implementation within the academic community and signifies an area for
improvement.

Finally, staff were asked to provide details of possible examples that could be used to support staff
in using the assessment guide and engaging in the issues of assessment (refer to Table 2.3). Limited
examples were provided on the day and this suggests that follow up work will need to be carried out
to address the critical request to provide exemplars, case studies and other supportive material to
illustrate the assessment policy context. Conversely, there were a number of suggestions to identify
what types of examples were needed to be incorporated into the assessment guide; suggested
examples included:
    • how to utilise external panels for assessment for moderation
    • managing credit transfer, RPL, advanced standing
    • guidelines for sessional teachers on assessment and to support their assessment workload.

Forum Delegates also raised the need to address issues of assessment workload for staff. In
particular, the need to consider the impacts of increased workload for both ongoing and sessional
staff, for example that may also lead to budgetary implications.




                                                                                                  88
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                                                     Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

 Table 2.3: Staff perspectives on key issues related to Discussion Theme 1
 Key       sub theme of     Staff notes of discussion
 issue     issue (sub
 (code)    code)
                                      Compliance          Economics, Finance & Marketing – no uniform adoption, individuals do it
                                      with policy         All comply
Successful implementation of




                                                          We are compliant in sections 4-8;
                                                          Evidence – proportion of appeals upheld on procedural grounds
                                      Interpretation of   no uniform adoption, individuals do it but not measured and individuals must find out by themselves.
                                      policy              Arguments re: creative conceptual approaches to art history (debate is healthy)
                                      Moderation          Moderation:
            policy




                                      practices           VET Diploma of Frontline Management (across 2 portfolios)
                                                          Moderation process – people are [in ?] their way
                                                          Yes we do, but how? And in all Schools – Art & Design
                                                          Who moderates across a whole year level? As opposed to across a course/ program?
                                      Policy support      no uniform adoption, individuals do it but not measured and individuals must find out by themselves.
                                      and                 Successful because they ‘manage expectations’.
                                      communication       Moderation process – people are [in ?] their way
                                                          Yes we do, but how? And in all Schools – Art & Design
                                                          Who moderates across a whole year level? As opposed to across a course/ program?
                                      AQTF National       TAFE – AQTF National Standards not be met > potential for conflict between AQTF/ RMIT Policy.
                                      Std
                                      Feedback on         A large document
Areas in need of




                                      draft guide         Welcome document & the opportunity to take it back to portfolio & look in detail
 improvement




                                      Grades and          Final grades – need RUBRICS/ indicators as per Jan’s (Orrell) suggestion in her presentation
                                      grading             Need more discussion in specific programs re: grading system:
                                                          HEd 12 credit point course – what is a comparable assessment load (types, how much, criteria and standards)
                                      Strategies for      Negotiating assessment – what does this mean in practice?
                                      new policy          Large classes – how is effective assessment to be used?
                                      directions          Teaching workload: valuing assessment time; assessment task
                                                          Work Integrated Learning – 24 credit point of assessment??? Policy - ? integrated with other assessment?
                                                          Cross-course assessment: one assessment task across multiple courses – legitimately.
                                      Assessment          Big gap in section 3 (and 2)
                                      design              Lack of ubiquitous awareness of section 2; [sections] 2, 3 & 10 require input from T&L and academics
                                                          This is the part that needs further development, IF WE THINK THE UNI HAS TO HAVE SUCH A DOC: -
                                                          needed for external audit?
                                                          Cross disciplinary inputs and assessment?
                                      Assessment          Also guidelines on quantity of assessment – what are the different approaches – could advise on whether we [do]
                                      parameters &        too much/ too little.
Gaps in draft guide




                                      standards           Issues around supplementary assessment in VET
                                                          - multiple opportunities to demonstrate competence are mandatory.
                                                          Employability skills should be reflected.
                                                          No benchmarks or frameworks
                                      Innovation in       Encourage innovation – what forms of assessment are used across RMIT.
                                      assessment          Dual program approaches (integrated assessment). Build on one project across courses (develop depth) eg
                                                          Industrial Design approach.
                                                          Cross disciplinary inputs and assessment?
                                      Resource            Language also needs to be simplified.
                                      development &       Diversity of assessment may require a community of inquiry in professional development of academic staff eg Ss
                                      support             (students?) produce video interview & analysis; poster display of conceptualising
                                                          Cross disciplinary inputs and assessment?
                                                          Exemplars, samples, also stories – narrative re: challenges and successes; Policy needs to acknowledge this. Biggs
                                                          and ‘benign’ approach to error
                                      Contacts for        Mobile phone instant feedback: Raju Mulye (BUS; Economics, Finance & Marketing)
Potential examples of good practice




                                      developing          Keypad & Zing use – data capture tools (e-learning): Tony Robins (SET; Engineering TAFE)
                                      resources           Live industry projects in marketing: Marion Steel, Kate Westberg, Michael Beverland (BUS; Eco, Fin &
                                                          Marketing)
                                                          Fiona Peterson & Barbara de la Harpe – [project on] What is being assessed?:
                                                          - skills, content: teach & assess both?; Product, process, person?; - Need to be clear product, process, person
                                                          (rubric) eg WIL
                                      Issues that need    Discussion on 2 & 3 devolved to schools – it does not come out in current program guide or approval process
                                      examples            External panels coming in for assessment:
                                                          - competencies of ‘industry’ assessors?; - VET – Cert IV Assessors or can be supervised
                                                          - HEd – no quals necessary
                                                          Credit transfer and RPL – also: Advanced Standing?
                                                          Budgetary considerations: see Teacher Workload
                                                          High assessment demand in some courses need to be acknowledged esp for sessional staff.
                                                          Guidelines re: sessional teachers:
                                                          - being assessors – NOT passing over to permament staff
                                                          - also sessionals should be provided with orientation and ongoing support




                                                                                                                                                                        89
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                      APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Discussion Theme 2
This discussion theme asked Forum Delegates to consider the overarching assessment philosophy
and principles that guide and frame our assessment policy and practice context. The Forum
Delegates weren’t asked to start from a ‘blank page’. Rather the draft assessment guide presented
the existing Overarching Assessment Principles (2001) and Assessment Charter (2003) and these
policy documents stimulated the discussion within this theme (refer to Appendix E, which includes
both these documents). Five groups out of the total of seven captured their discussions in their
respective submitted Forum Notebook. This section of the report presents these data.

As summarised in Table 2.2, Discussion Theme 2 was divided into three parts. The first part
contained three sub questions in the attempt to gain from the Forum Delegates an overall
perspective of how the assessment manuals of other Australian Higher Education institutions (as
brought together in the RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Overview of current assessment policy
in the Australian HE context – Draft preliminary report; refer to Appendix E Pre-Forum Reading
Pack) might influence our own development of a framework for our own assessment manual. In
light of the current assessment policy context in the Australian Higher Education sector, the second
part sought the Forum Delegates’ viewpoints on our existing Overarching Assessment Principles
and Assessment Charter. The third part of this Discussion Theme asked for any recommendations
for change.

Overall reactions: comparing RMIT to current HE assessment policy context
The responses to the first part of the Discussion Theme 2 were mixed in their impact and/or advice
to re-vision RMIT assessment policy context. The overall reactions provided limited suggestions to
act upon. However, it seems that the Draft Preliminary Report on the overview of current Higher
Education assessment policy context was perceived generally by groups as “interesting” and
“comprehensive” but that it posed the question of “how do we translate to practice?”. The latter
response was picked up by another group too. While supportive generally of the work carried out to
develop the Draft Preliminary Report, a group also suggested that the report could have gone further
in analysis and particularly to focus on and examine “What works? No data on effectiveness of
uni’s policies.” This group explored this concept further within the context of RMIT developing an
assessment manual. In their judgement, the draft assessment manual presented to Forum Delegates
was process oriented and that manuals “are functional” as they “gathered together all policies
relating to students/ not necessarily integrated” (with a staff manual?); yet the draft manual
represented “lots of rules without showing how to implement”.

Another group saw the value of institutions identifying their assessment philosophy and principles,
stating that they are “good motherhood statements” that institutions “need to have”. Yet another
group identified the issue that RMIT’s assessment policy needs to be differentiated to meet the
needs of the dual sector contexts as there “can’t be rules for joint sector. Cannot agree on one size
fits all.” This sentiment was echoed by another group that identified the need to understand and
recognise that engagement with industry is different within the HE and VET sectors. The group
stated that “industry develops and drives VET training packages etc. Quite different process to
HE”. On the other hand, a group did see a positive in linking the VET and HE in an assessment
policy context: “Good to see TAFE and HE”.

One group raised the issue of the appropriate process for developing assessment policy and queried
whether it should be “imposed” from the “top down” because “we should empower all academics/
program teams with the understanding, but allow variety of solutions.”

Another group pointed out the lack of recognition and discussion about the change and increase in
workloads associated with changing assessment practices: “Not a single word about workload
                                                                                                  90
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                    APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

(doesn’t recognise) and resources.” This group also identified a gap in our current assessment
policy that was associated with the Academic Appeals policy: “Academic Appeals process only
mentions undergraduate. Not covering research postgraduates. Need to address.”
What might RMIT learn from the current HE assessment policy context?
The final question in this first part of the Discussion Theme 2 asked Forum Delegates to identify
what RMIT might be able to consider from the current Higher Education assessment policy context
as it develops the concept of the RMIT assessment manual. The responses provided a variety of
constructive suggestions that are represented in Table 2.4.

Table 2.4: Learning from other HE institutions and their assessment policy context
Key issue                     Staff notes of discussion
Resources useful to integrate QUT approach – useful for teachers on ground.
into RMIT manual              Check out Uni of Melbourne 9 principles of teaching too.
                              Relate directly to the CSHE sixteen indicators of quality for effective assessment.
                              UNSW Guidelines of learning sit alongside / linked to policies of assessment (two
                              ticks or three!)
Principles to guide           Need to move the manual from functional to advanced
development of RMIT           Ideas but not prescription of how to implement the policies
manual                        Have an overarching policy > then have localised “tool hints”
                              Needs to cover differences – “one size fits all” is not appropriate
Professional learning         Professional Development around assessment.
                              Induction program for processes & policies
                              [Academics] Want ed theory
Role of academics/ teaching   Academics don’t want to be driven by a procedures manual
staff                         Want ed theory
                              Where is the decision on assessment made? – ok in structured programs.
                              Some information needs to go to bottom > up, not just ‘top dogs’ pontificating on high;
                              overarching principles & leave the operational manual to local conditions
Assessment standards          [need] broad benchmarks for assessment
                              Manual will not necessarily help us achieve “high quality” assessment
Postgraduate context          Statement for Higher Degree by research covered GRO [Graduate Research Office]

As depicted in Table 2.4, three groups suggested how existing resources from other universities
might inform RMIT’s development of the assessment manual. One group provided detailed
principles that should underpin the development of the manual with a focus on how to help staff
enact policy by providing real examples of good practice. The need for professional learning and
support to implement policy successfully was highlighted as was the need to support teaching staff
with relevant educational theories to support their work in teaching and learning. This reinforces the
importance for nurturing a culture of quality teaching where teaching is a reflective and
pedagogically driven practice. It was also highlighted by a couple of groups that such an
institutional culture also engages its academic/ teaching staff with the processes of assessment
policy development and implementation that enables active participation rather than simple
compliance. Furthermore, two groups also revealed that further work to develop standards of
assessment within RMIT was necessary. To illustrate, a group pointed out that a manual is a
significant development but the standards, and shared understandings of standards, emerge within a
climate that engages its academic/ teaching staff with its policies. Finally, one group identified the
need to be inclusive of the postgraduate context in assessment policy.

Feedback on RMIT’s existing overarching assessment principles and charter
The second part of the Discussion Theme 2 sought to gain feedback from Forum Delegates on
RMIT’s existing Overarching Assessment Principles and Assessment Charter (refer to Appendix E:
Pre-Forum Reading Pack). As seen in the comparative analysis of the current assessment policy
context in the Higher Education sector (refer to the Draft Preliminary Report, Pre-Forum Reading
Pack), the institution’s assessment philosophy and/or principles are a significant foundation that

                                                                                                                  91
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                               APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

underpin their respective assessment policy, manual and supporting resources. Consequently, it is
imperative that as an institution we ensure that our assessment philosophy and/or principles reflect
our vision for assessment and its practice. The feedback from the groups’ discussions provide useful
insights on how this high level policy output might be enhanced to frame and underpin assessment
policy context at RMIT.

Tables 2.5a and 2.5b represent the groups’ discussion notes captured in their respective Forum
Notebooks on their thoughts on the issue of RMIT’s broad assessment principles. The Forum
Delegates were asked to complete their responses using the Plus Minus Interesting (PMI strategy)
Table presented in their Notebooks.


Table 2.5a: Forum Delegates’ thoughts on RMIT’s Overarching Assessment Principles
Plus                                Minus                                   Interesting

Point 1 is fine                     Too long, too vague;                    Potential to use point 1           in
                                    2-9 directed at students (who is the    performance review/ promotion.
                                    audience?)
                                    It doesn’t make sense what is the
                                    relationship to RMIT’s strategy.
                                    Too much jargon.
                                    Not practically useful.

                                    Policy was approved in 2001 but not
                                    widely circulated

Principles OK as overarching in     6.3 point 3: Don’t want them to be      Problem giving feedback on exams
general                             able to re-submit a failed piece of
                                    work. Up to student progress ctte

Demonstration of learning           No. 6: what is bias? Need to look for   Diverse needs. Need to understand &
                                    cultural biases inherent in statement   address diverse needs.




Generally, it seems that there is support for the existing
overarching assessment principles (refer to Table 2.5a).
However, groups have determined ways to improve the
principles that include:
    • clarifying the audience and purpose of the principles
    • use language that is accessible to the wider audience
    • ensuring that the principles engage inclusivity in
        assessment practices.


Furthermore, Table 2.5b presents the data collated from the
groups related to their views on RMIT’s Assessment Charter.
Once again, there was general support for the Charter. Issues
of the impact and role of ICT in assessment were raised.




                                                                                                               92
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Table 2.5b: Forum Delegates’ thoughts on RMIT’s Assessment Charter
Plus                                 Minus                                       Interesting

Clear                                Assessment Charter unaligned to
                                     overall uni charter
                                         - Lack of content
                                         - Is it necessary?

                                     No idea how it is used.
                                     Can [beat?] audience over head –
                                     staff/ student may not be able to
                                     achieve these individually.

                                     Never knew there was a student
                                     charter!

Charter fine: to what degree is it                                               Need to consider plagiarism??
being practised?                                                                 Didn’t know it existed.
How do we provide evidence that
Schools consider all this?

Use of ICTs                          Use of ICTs:                                Understand the ICT principles of
    - flexible                       - assumptions of access to off site         universal design format, not purpose
    - access                         ICTs
                                     - built in accessibility for all students



Common to both policy related documents was the feedback from groups that these documents have
existed for a few years and yet there was very little awareness of their existence. Furthermore, there
was a query to their relevance, particularly as they seemed to lack coherence with current RMIT
learning and teaching policy context (ie the Learning and Teaching Strategy; Academic Plan; RMIT
Strategic Plan: 2010 Designing the Future). Similarly, it was discussed how were these documents
actually used at the School level within courses and programs. Questions were raised about how
they informed practice and, if it was important, then how such practices could be monitored.

The final part of the Discussion Theme 2 asked for any recommendations for change to these two
policy-related documents. Responses to this question were limited and may indicate lack of time
although some of the issues may have been subsumed in the preceding section (ie Tables 2.5a & b).
Two comments were made by two different groups. One group mentioned the relevance of the
charter: “Assessment Charter is unnecessary – won’t lead to outcome.” The other group continued
to raise the issue of policy implementation and the criticality of engaging staff with policy for
successful implementation: “Better publicity?”. Additionally this group also suggested that
“academics need to better articulate expectations” of assessment to students; and this might also
indicate support for ongoing professional learning for teaching staff and/or sharing of knowledge
and practices to improve assessment practices.



Discussion Theme 3
The Discussion Theme 3 asked groups to focus their discussions on issues of implementation.
Forum Delegates were asked should the concept of an assessment policy manual be realised, how
might this be best implemented? As illustrated in Table 2.2, there are two sections to this
Discussion Theme. The first part asked groups to signal areas of development for the assessment
manual. The second part asked groups to nominate up to three recommendations and support their
list of recommendations with ‘how best might these recommendations be achieved?’. Four groups
out of the total of seven responded to the Discussion Theme 3.
                                                                                                                  93
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                        APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Purpose and scope of the assessment manual
Table 2.6 presents the staff notes from the groups that responded to first part of Discussion Theme
3. There was general and enthusiastic support for the development of the RMIT Assessment Policy
and Procedures Manual. There was recognition of the relevance and importance of such a manual
for academic and teaching staff. A group suggested that it should meet the needs of all teaching
staff no matter where they are in their careers (eg long serving teaching staff, new staff, sessional).
It was felt that students need to be able to access the manual to guide their assessment related
behaviours. However Forum Delegates weren’t sure whether student needs would be better met by
a combined staff/ student manual or separate manual with a student perspective focus.

Some groups highlighted the importance of the role that an RMIT assessment philosophy and
principles plays in the implementation of RMIT policy (refer to Table 2.6, Function sub theme
category). Currently, RMIT has an existing set of assessment principles (see Discussion Theme 2 in
this report), yet it seems that staff aren’t familiar with it and/or how it influences practice. These
assessment principles also pre-date the current RMIT’s learning and teaching related strategic
policy documents. As discussed by some groups in the previous section of the report, this suggests a
need for review to minimise inconsistencies and incorporate new dimensions introduced into the
new strategic policy directions.

Resources to support implementation
What was reinforced here by the responses (refer to Table 2.6) was that the policy manual needs to
be supported with a variety of relevant resources. Suggestions included providing diverse and
relevant professional learning and development opportunities for academic and teaching staff.
These opportunities for professional learning should be offered at the institutional level for global
perspectives such as policy awareness; and local levels within Schools to address localised issues of
assessment policy and practice within the particularities of their programs. Such an approach
adheres to the principle outlined by one group that good policy shapes local practices; that there
may be diverse ways to respond to policy issues at the local level.

Another focus was on the development of resources that demonstrated how the policy is enacted
within the practices of RMIT programs. Consequently there was a call for resource development
that gave examples and models of good assessment practice across the university. This could
include exemplars that would assist in developing benchmarks and assessment standards.

Areas to develop assessment standards
Forum Delegates were asked to nominate priority areas for development of assessment standards
(see Table 2.6). One suggestion made was to support the implementation of the new policy on Work
Integrated Learning. Another suggestion was to support the direction of the current Learning and
Teaching Strategy, which identifies the importance that formative assessment plays in learning. A
further suggestion concentrated on the scholarship of teaching and learning within RMIT to share
good practice in teaching generally as well as in challenging areas such as large classes &
assessment, and plagiarism. This activity would facilitate collecting and presenting case studies,
examples and exemplars as resources for others to use and adapt. Finally, there was a suggestion
that assessment standards would be a priority area for development as it could develop benchmarks
of good assessment practice and assist RMIT to provide consistency in assessment within and
across programs.

A group signalled that critical to any implementation plan is the need to engage staff and this is
underpinned by good two-way communication. The area of good communication was identified as
in need of improvement and significant to this initiative.

                                                                                                    94
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                            APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Table 2.6: Ideas to develop the RMIT Assessment Policy and Procedures Manual
Theme                  Sub theme                Staff notes of discussion
Purpose & scope        Support for initiative   Good initiative. Long way to go before useful. Lacks usefulness because
of assessment                                   lacking principles & philosophies
manual for RMIT                                 Work in progress, great initiative but can be developed further
                       Intended audience        It must be a ready reference for teachers.

                                                Holistic & accessible to staff & students > combined or separate?

                                                [Ground?] for new staff & update for longer serving staff

                       Function                 Good initiative. Long way to go before useful. Lacks usefulness because
                                                lacking principles & philosophies
                                                Work in progress, great initiative but can be developed further

                                                Clear on the inclusion of policy & procedures > transparency
                                                Incorporation of “how to Design/ Align Assessment’
                                                Requires clear timelines & statements of validity

Resources to           Resource types           Workshops/ training: Openline; School level
support                                         Reference Course Guide: outlines topics, learning objectives, assessment,
implementation                                  contents/ design & alignment
                       Principles guiding       DO NOT USE A ONE SIZE FITS ALL APPROACH WHICH IS
                       resource development     COMMON IN SET.

                       Resource                 Needs definitions, examples, frameworks
                       development              Models of possible assessment practices
                                                Recommendations for suggested assessments            –      benchmarks    >
                                                implementation

Areas to develop       New policy support       Work in Learning (WIL)
assessment
standards              Formative assessment     Adequate timelines & opportunities to assess & provide feedback, eg
                                                “feedback week”: fixed week in semester; clear outline of expectations/
                                                directions

                       Scholarship: sharing     Large classes teaching/ assessment
                       practice
                                                Contains principles & philosophies but not the frameworks.
                                                Lacks small case studies, exemplars.
                                                Plagiarism

                       Assessment               Benchmarks
                       Standards
                                                Consistency of assessment

                       Improve                  Communication of policy changes is poor.
                       communication            Improved implementation & rollout.



Priority areas for action: recommendations by Forum Delegates
The last section of Discussion Theme 3 sought recommendations from Forum Delegates about
implementation of the assessment manual initiative. Four groups from the total of seven completed
this section in their Forum Notebooks. Table 2.7 captures the groups’ recommendations for action
and ways to achieve them.




                                                                                                                         95
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                    APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Table 2.7: Priority areas for action to implement assessment manual initiative
Recommendation                                  How best might this recommendation be achieved?
Accountability for implementation needs to be   PVCs (College) and Heads of School need to be monitored on how it
clear and monitored                             is being achieved.
                                                Clear KPIs
                                                Training and development.

VET practitioners share their assessment        Validation/ moderation across VET and HE for program areas.
practices with HE colleagues. VET has long
experience with validation/ moderation.
Manual accessible to staff & students and       1) Manual is transparent & accessible to both staff & students:
contains best practice examples & guide            presented as 2 manuals
                                                2) Should include section of how to design/ align assessment with
                                                   working examples > underlying principles/ philosophy
                                                3) Include glossary

Introduce template to Align Assessment with     Link in ‘Assessment Manual’ but not part of manual per se
Learning & Teaching and provide Course          Not compulsory <> links to course guides/ outlines
Outline                                         (previously classed “Reference Couse Guide”)
WIL                                             Implementation support eg designing to reduce plagiarism yet:
Large Class Teaching                            Design of assesment FOR learning & demonstrating practical/ tech
                                                skills
                                                Maintaining links with industry (for learning) & fulfilling
                                                requirements.
Incorporation of feedback/ assessment week      Incorporation of 1 week feedback/ assessment into academic
                                                semester around week 6-7

Include benchmarks or frameworks to             Situation was mentioned that a person want to dissuade a colleague
Assessment Policy                               from having a single 8000 word essay sole assessment in a post
                                                graduate program. Nothing in policy that stated this was not
                                                appropriate.

What is being assessed?                         Academic literacy or subject/ discourse knowledge

Process for the development of the policy.      Update page to tell of new changes & referenced to parts.
Need to be a living document.




                                                                                                                    96
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                                  Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Evaluation
The Forum was evaluated from two perspectives: i) the Delegates on the organisation and relevance
of the Forum program; and ii) the educational consultant with an independent review of RMIT’s
effort to re-vision and reform assessment its policy and practice to improve learning and teaching.
This section of the report portrays these evaluative perspectives.



Delegates’ perspective
The RMIT Assessment Standards Project Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum was
held on Tuesday 5 August, 2008 at Storey Hall, RMIT. There were 74 RMIT staff that registered
for the Forum and 67 staff participated on the day. About half of the Forum Delegates (35 staff or
53%) completed and submitted the evaluation form. The following feedback from the Forum
Delegates represents the data collated from the submitted evaluation forms.

The evaluative survey sought comments from Delegates in two key areas: i) reflection on the Forum
Program; and ii) reflection on the organisation of the Forum. There were 9 survey items in all (see
Appendix G for the survey instrument). The first 7 survey items were statements that required
Delegates to rank their responses on a Likert scale from Strongly Disagree (1) to Strongly Agree
(5). Each survey item allowed Delegates the option of supporting their ranking with comments.


Reflection on Forum Program
Overall, the Forum Delegates found the program to be useful and found the opportunity to
participate in discussions as valuable.
Introductory briefings session
In general the Forum Delegates found the introductory briefings useful as they outlined the RMIT
context of the Project and assisted preparing Delegates for the workshop discussion. Figure 3.1
provides a summary of the responses showing that 27 out of 35 Forum Delegates (or 77%) either
agreed or strongly agreed that the introductory briefings were useful.


Figure 3.1: Summary of responses to feedback on introductory briefings in Forum Program (Q.1)

                      25

                      20
   No. of Delegates




                      15

                      10

                      5

                      0
                             Strongly     Disagree [2]   [3]         Agree [4]   Stongly Agree   no response
                           Disagree [1]                                               [5]             [0]
                                                               Ranking



There was an option for Delegates to add their comments to the question. Analysis of these
comments show that most related to the management of the session, particularly that they thought it
                                                                                               97
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                                          Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

could have been briefer to allow more time for discussions later and/or for Janice Orrell’s
presentation (9 comments; see Figure 3.2). The remaining comments related to the content or nature
of the material presented and the feedback was generally positive (14 references/ comments were
made by Delegates; see node categories in Figure 3.2). Delegates found the introductory briefings
key to providing the broader context and framework for their understanding of the Project and the
focus on assessment to assist their discussions later in the program. Two comments were negative,
stating they found this part of the program as ‘threatening in nature’ and ‘unfocussed and
uninformative’.


Figure 3.2: Analysis of the comments made by delegates to usefulness of introductory briefings (Q.1)

                              10
   No. of coding references




                               9
                               8
                               7
                               6
                               5
                               4
                               3
                               2
                               1
                               0
                                   mgt of session         relevant           helped               provided         negative
                                                                          understanding         framework         comments
                                                                     Category coded (Node)


Assessment in University contexts session
Associate Professor Janice Orrell, an educational consultant with expertise in assessment, was
invited to present a keynote address to provide a broader context of Assessment in tertiary sector
including exploration of current trends and examples of good practice, particularly across the
Higher Education sector, and also links to the VET sector. Many Delegates (24/ 35 or 69 %) found
Jan’s presentation stimulating, insightful and helped to generate thought (see Figure 3.3). Negative
comments related to the fact that Jan had ‘too many slides’ that were sometimes difficult to read
and/ or made the presentation feel ‘rushed’.

Figure 3.3: Summary of Delegate feedback on the usefulness of the Assessment in University contexts session to
stimulate discussion (Q.2)

                              16
                              14
   No. of Delegates




                              12
                              10
                              8
                              6
                              4
                              2
                              0
                                     Strongly       Disagree [2]        [3]         Agree [4]     Stongly Agree   no response
                                   Disagree [1]                                                        [5]             [0]
                                                                              Ranking


                                                                                                                                98
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                                  Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Workshop session
Most delegates (25/35 or 71%) felt that the workshop session provided the opportunity to discuss
and identify key issues on assessment within the RMIT policy and practice context (refer to Figure
3.4). Generally, Delegates found this a significant part of the program and many would have liked
to have had more time to discuss the issues deeply and that there were ‘so many issues’. To
illustrate, one Delegate articulated, “this forum needs to be taken to School level. This is both
complex and complicated and really could not be addressed in 40 mins.”

Figure 3.4: Summary of Delegate responses to finding the workshop session as an opportunity to discuss key
issues of assessment within RMIT’s context (Q.3)

                      16
                      14
   No. of Delegates




                      12
                      10
                      8
                      6
                      4
                      2
                      0
                             Strongly     Disagree [2]   [3]         Agree [4]   Stongly Agree   no response
                           Disagree [1]                                               [5]             [0]
                                                               Ranking



Many felt that the workshop and debrief sessions were well facilitated (22 out of 35 or 63% either
agreed or strongly agreed to this survey item: Q.4) but most lamented at the lack of time to
comprehensively address all the issues.

Reflection on the Forum organisation
In order to assist Delegates to grasp some of the complexity of the issues prior to the Forum, a Pre-
Forum Reading Pack (refer to Appendix E) was distributed in the week prior to the Forum. The Pre-
Forum Reading Pack contained:
    • Forum Program (including its purpose)
    • A/Prof Janice Orrell’s biography
    • RMIT Guide to Assessment: A Proposed Framework (June 2008)
    • RMIT Overarching Assessment Principles (2001)
    • RMIT Assessment Charter (2003)
    • RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Overview of current assessment policy in the
       Australian Higher Education context (Draft Preliminary Report).

Delegates were also made aware of further background material on the Teaching Quality Indicators
Project that was available on: www.rmit.edu.au/tqi
Pre-Forum Reading Pack
As Figure 3.5 illustrates, many delegates (74% either agreed or strongly agreed) found the Pre-
Forum Reading Pack valuable and interesting containing useful resources, particularly the
comparative research draft report. Some wanted more time to work through the ‘density’ of the
resource and others called for the need to also engage at local levels, for example: “Longer time
required to consider it and should be done at School levels”.

                                                                                                               99
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                                  Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Others suggested the need for further analysis of the data represented in the draft report (Overview
of current assessment policy) to assist in informing the development of RMIT’s assessment manual.
This was always the intention as outlined in the RMIT Assessment Standards Project Plan (revised
3 June 2008) and stated in the draft preliminary report. This higher level of analysis will occur and
align with further data gathering processes in the period post-Forum.

Some people also pointed out that they weren’t aware of some of RMIT’s assessment policies and
related documents, alerting to issues of implementation and raising the matter of how to
operationalise policy into practice, for example: “The ‘Overarching Assessment Principles’
document is dated 3/9/2001. This shows how poorly crucial documents are circulated at
operational level”.

Figure 3.5: Summary of Delegate feedback on value of the Pre-Forum Reading Pack

                      20
                      18
                      16
   No. of Delegates




                      14
                      12
                      10
                       8
                       6
                       4
                       2
                       0
                             Strongly     Disagree [2]   [3]         Agree [4]   Stongly Agree   no response
                           Disagree [1]                                               [5]             [0]
                                                               Ranking



Most Delegates were satisfied with the food and beverages provided (94% delegates agreed or
strongly agreed) but some added they would have appreciated coffee on arrival and water at the
tables during the Forum. Overall, Delegates (80%) also felt the Forum was efficiently organised and
31 out of 35 staff (or 89%) would be interested in participating in a future follow up forum later in
the year. Two delegates were not interested and thought it was a ‘waste of time’.

Summary
In general, the Forum was well received by the Delegates. It was seen as a useful briefing. More
significantly, they valued the opportunity to contribute to RMIT’s assessment policy context at a
point where they felt that their contributions would be respected and reflected in the ‘final’ policy
‘product’. Many Delegates wanted more time to work through the issues deeply, unpacking the
complexity of assessment within policy and practice contexts. There were appeals for further work
at the local School level to engage more academics in situ with the assessment issues and to provide
the opportunity for developing diverse local solutions.




                                                                                                               100
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                           APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation



Educational consultant’s perspective
Engagement of an external consultant
It was decided by the RMIT TQI Project Team that it would be useful to incorporate a review of the
RMIT Assessment Standards Project, particularly in relation to the Forum, to gain an external
perspective of the project. The external consultant that was engaged to provide the review was
Associate Professor Janice Orrell, who is an educational consultant with expertise in the area of
assessment (refer to Appendix E to see A/Prof Orrell’s biography that was provided to staff in the
Pre-Forum Reading Pack). Due to her expertise in the area of assessment, she was also invited to
present at the Forum to provide an overview of assessment in the university context for Forum
Delegates. A/Prof Janice Orrell raised current issues that the university sector was grappling with in
relation to assessment. Many issues resonated with the kinds of things that RMIT was focussing on
within the parameters of the RMIT Assessment Standards Project.

Key observations and advice
The report prepared by A/Prof Jan Orrell is presented in Appendix H. For the purposes of A/ Prof
Jan Orrell’s role as external consultant she was given access to all the documents that were
generated for the TQI Project. This range of documents assisted to provide A/Prof Orell with the
context for the RMIT Assessment Standards Project and in her role to review the nature of the
project. Furthermore, her contribution to the Forum program allowed her to gain an understanding
of how the RMIT community was responding to the assessment policy context. Consequently, her
report captures her reflections on these two aspects.

A/Prof Orrell’s report acknowledged that RMIT was undergoing considerable and strategic change
in the Learning and Teaching context, partly due to changes in and the new leadership within
RMIT’s senior executive and management team. One result of these changes was the response to
address areas of gaps and limitations, particularly at the institutional level. A consequence was the
review of a number of assessment policies (eg in areas such as: special consideration;
supplementary assessment; student academic progress). From her perspective, A/Prof Orrell sees
this as a strength in RMIT’s approach:
       “As an external consultant I have reviewed the assessment policy documentation and related documents
       and it is my estimation that there is a solid, evidence-based policy framework in place that should be a
       sound foundation to ascertain and enhance the quality of assessment practice at RMIT. These policies
       should also go a long way to assist in the integration of the dual tertiary sectors represented at RMIT.”
       [refer to the report in Appendix H]

It was observed that this considerable policy related activity has also created anxiety amongst some
academic staff as they attempt to implement the new policies and/or they find it difficult to be
aware of the new or changing policies. Thus, A/Prof Orrell has ascertained that it would be critical
for RMIT to take the time to develop an implementation plan that would consolidate practice
associated with assessment, rather than continue re-developing assessment policies.
       “At this point, it is my observation and strong recommendation that to add to, or change, the existing
       high order documentation any further is not necessary and possibly undesirable. I recommend this from
       two viewpoints. One is my view of the documentation suggests that it is extensive and educationally
       sound. The second view is from my participation in the forum at which it was clear that everyday staff
       and education leaders at RMIT need time to become familiar with the documentation, to compare it with
       their current practice and to identify its implications for future practice.” [refer to the report in Appendix
       H]

Subsequently, A/Prof Orrell has suggested that RMIT should consider a systematic plan of
implementation to support academic staff to integrate the assessment policies and procedures within

                                                                                                                        101
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

their programs. Table 3.1 summarises A/Prof Orrell’s steps that are important to include in such an
implementation plan approach.


Table 3.1: Essential steps that support assessment policy implementation suggested by A/Prof Orrell
Suggested       steps        for Elements of focus
implementation plan
1. Developing a base line         They [academics] need to have a reliable base line set of data about current
understanding                     assessment practice in terms of:
                                     • What is assessed?
                                     • How is it assessed? (Is it valid?)
                                     • What frame of reference is used to produce grades?
                                     • How is the reliability of grades assured?
                                     • How are standards articulated and maintained?
                                     • Are their departmental concerns about academic honesty?
                                     • What is the cost of assessment in terms of academic time and funds for part
                                       time assessors?

2. Establish an agreed            This review should be rewarded, supportive, be non-punitive and encourage the
target(s) for change              setting of realistic targets for change. These might be:
                                      • to establish and use systems for effective implementation of the moderation
                                        process,
                                      • to have more efficient assessment processes that reduce time on tasks for
                                        academics and students but produce higher quality learning;
                                      • more comprehensive education on academic honesty and citation processes and
                                        more transparent and consistent use of the rules regarding academic dishonesty
                                      • More diverse and authentic assessment that assists students to produce
                                        evidence of their graduate capabilities in employment seeking.
                                      • Devising descriptors of standards of achievement that are negotiated with the
                                        relevant external professional and employment stakeholders.

3. Allocation of                  Rather than adopt a one size fits all, wise and judicious responses to this challenge
appropriate resources             should be rewarded. For example, if the department budget has been freed up by
                                  less cost in marking, let them keep the funds as discretionary. Ensure that teaching
                                  loads are not increased if they find more educationally sound but more efficient ways
                                  of assessing. These strategies have been used in UK Universities where some
                                  departments reduced their assessment costs to 15% of their former level.

                                  Efforts such as large scale forums and resources for individual academics do little to
                                  change the status quo or gain better conformity to the new policies. Change has to
                                  occur at the Department level and for this to occur it must be supported by the
                                  departmental leadership. Leaders need to engage in mandated programmes to
                                  enhance their literacy about assessment and its impact on student learning,
                                  departmental efficiency and institutional quality assurance. They need to have
                                  rewards for doing so and confidence that they will have access to resources to make
                                  the necessary changes.

                                  The resources should include:
                                    • Access to face to face expert advice at the departmental level to address their
                                      selected targets.
                                    • Exemplars (on-line, with contact details) of non-traditional assessment
                                       practices that have evidence of proven benefit in terms of increased efficiency,
                                       enhanced student engagement and improved student learning outcomes.



Furthermore, A/Prof Jan Orrell presented her observations from her participation in the Forum.
These observations and her commentary are presented in Table 3.2. Many of the themes presented


                                                                                                                    102
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                           APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

are incorporated in her suggested steps for an assessment policy implementation plan (refer to Table
3.1 and/or report in Appendix H).




Table 3.2: A/Prof Orrell’s observations and analysis of Forum Delegates’ concerns on assessment at RMIT
Observation                    A/Prof Orrell’s commentary
Staff are anxious at the pace  Staff need support in focusing their efforts and establishing realistic targets. They
& breadth of change            feel out of control and as a result their response seems to be passive aggressive
                               resulting in a desire to withdraw or sabotage compliance.

VET sector are not highly         The VET sector feels overlooked in terms of what it has already achieved and the
recognised for their expertise,   limitations faced by pressures from their related industry. While they can see that
particularly in assessment        there are many possibilities and advantages in the greater integration with the HE
                                  sector they feel that they already have much to offer relating to contemporary
                                  assessment issues, such as setting standards, that they have attended to some time
                                  ago. They would like to feel that the integration is more mutual and feel like partners
                                  in the process.

VET sector feel additional        In addition, the VET sector has felt constrained in the past by the inflexibility of
pressures                         industry and its requirements. They now feel additional constraint from new
                                  institutional rules regarding assessment. Dialogue with the VET sector related to
                                  Mastery learning and critical scrutiny of the policy in this regard may produce a
                                  much needed solution.

Existing grading system           There were questions raised about the grading system and its capacity to report
                                  development in learning. I am not convinced that this is a problem with the policy
                                  but more a problem of academics not knowing how to design assessment and use the
                                  existing systems to associate with this type of reporting of learning outcome.

New assessment practices          Questions were also raised about comparability of scope, workload etc between
and workload issues               courses. It is my view once again that if the moderation systems that have been
                                  designed were being systematically used at the Academic Organisational Unit
                                  (AOU) level, it would be feasible to begin to deal with this issue.



                                                                                                                         103
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                    APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

In her report, A/Prof Orrell also presented key themes that she captured as she listened to staff in
their discussion within the workshop in the Forum program. The themes that emerge from her
                                               report affirm and correlate with the data
                                               representation from the Forum Notebooks, as
                                               portrayed previously in this report’s Section 2.
                                               A/Prof Orrell noted from the Forum Delegates a
                                               significant willingness and readiness to change
                                               assessment practice to more authentic forms of
                                               assessment and engaging in deeper levels of
                                               learning. Furthermore, themes identified by
                                               Delegates included:
                                               • increase professional learning opportunities for
                                                   new ways of thinking about assessment
                                               • increase diversity of assessment
                                               • a program level approach to managing
                                                   assessment to assessment student workload
                                               • developing scholarship of learning and teaching,
                                                   particularly associated with developing and
                                                   sharing assessment practices
                                               • engage academic leadership in learning and
                                                   teaching with issues of renewing policies and
                                                   change in strategic directions
                                               • respect the diversity of practice: that local
                                                   solutions/ practice will emerge in implementing
                                                   policy yet these practices should align with the
    policy intention.

In her final comments, A/Prof Orrell “was impressed at the level of engagement of those who
attended and their honesty in discussing the issues they raised.” (refer to Appendix H) She
encouraged RMIT to continue to engage its staff in Forums such as this one but to allow for more
time for discussion of issues amongst staff. Her concluding comments speak well of the approach
used by RMIT to address issues of assessment policy and practice.

       “I truly commend the comprehensive and sound work that you are doing and producing at RMIT in
       regard to assessment. I am very impressed with its quality and scope and anything I have written here
       that sounds in anyway negative is merely meant to be a suggestion for you to consider for the future.”
       (see Appendix H)




                                                                                                                104
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation




                                                                                        105
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                    APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Conclusion & Recommendations

Concluding observations
The Forum was well received by Forum Delegates and represented key learning and teaching
related roles across academic colleges and policy making units. The Forum Delegates perceived the
theme of assessment as significant within RMIT’s context. They also appreciated and wanted to
contribute to the policy making process, particularly as they could draw upon their experiences of
implementing these assessment policies at the School level. Consequently, this forum provided a
mechanism to demonstrate how assessment policy and practice are intertwined and can inform each
other in order to advance learning and teaching excellence.

Forum Delegates strongly supported the concept to introduce an RMIT Assessment Policies and
Procedures Manual that would raise awareness of RMIT’s assessment related policy environment
and improve its accessibility to inform and
enhance assessment practices across the
institution. However Forum Delegates also
argued ardently that the assessment policy
manual needed to be supported with
opportunities for professional learning and
examples of good assessment practice,
reflecting diverse contexts at the local
levels of Schools, programs and courses.

There was also a willingness to both foster
and participate in sharing good assessment
practice across the university. This reveals
an eagerness to contribute to developing a
culture of scholarship about learning, teaching and assessment. Forum Delegates also indicated a
readiness to explore the development of assessment standards to bring both quality and consistency
between similar level courses and programs.

From the perspective of the independent reviewer, A/Prof Janice Orrell, found that the assessment
policy climate at RMIT had undergone significant recent changes and that there was a relatively
strong foundation at the assessment policy level. She recommended that there was now a need to
consolidate the policy cycle ie to allow staff to implement the assessment policies and procedures
and change practices to improve assessment and learning experiences for students. Such an
approach would also promote the development of assessment standards.

Recommendations
On analysis of the data collated for this report it is recommended:

Recommendation No. 1:
That a review of assessment philosophy and principles at RMIT is undertaken.
The review should consider that the assessment principles need to:
   • have a clear purpose and audience (staff/ students) in mind (ie develop context)
   • use language that is jargon-free
   • engage inclusivity principles
   • be supported by a communication strategy and plan for implementation to engage staff and
       how it might be used to change assessment practice.
                                                                                              106
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


The review should be based on RMIT’s existing ‘Overarching Assessment Principles’ to align with
   • current RMIT Learning & Teaching policy context
   • use insights gained and recommendations from the benchmarking activity of the Australian
       HE assessment philosophy/principles context ie refer to the recommendations of the RMIT
       report Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context (Nov 2008) prepared
       by Dr Josephine Lang
   • examine applicability of assessment principles within the VET context and provide any
       further advice, if necessary, to incorporate VET assessment context.

The review should make RMIT’s existing Charter of Assessment redundant and/or incorporate any
useful ideas into principles or a resource as there was much confusion of its role, value and
contribution to changing assessment practice.


Recommendation No. 2:
That the concept of the RMIT Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual is accepted and
that there is a plan to strengthen assessment manual through:
   • incorporation of reviewed assessment philosophy and principles
   • more policy development to guide practice in Section 3: Design of Assessment (of the Guide
       to Assessment HE & TAFE – A Proposed Framework that was provided to Forum
       Delegates); eg how to design assessment; what is appropriate assessment eg standards for
       consistency of assessment workloads across similar courses/ programs
   • more resources to assist teaching staff to create new ways of learning and using assessment
       for learning (eg use of formative assessment); foster innovation in assessment; and greater
       opportunities for professional learning in the area of assessment and learning
   • addressing an oversight in Section 7: Appeals (of the Guide to Assessment HE & TAFE – A
       Proposed Framework that was provided to Forum Delegates) that doesn’t cater for
       postgraduate students (only needs of VET and undergraduate students are currently
       addressed).




                                                       That further development of the manual
                                                       considers the following principles that have
                                                       been derived from reflections of others’
                                                       practices such as outlined in the Overview
                                                       of Current Assessment Policy in the
                                                       Australian HE context (from the Pre-Forum
                                                       Reading Pack) and refer to the final report
                                                       [Lang (2008) Review of Assessment Policy
                                                       in the Australian university context, RMIT,
                                                       unpublished report]:

    •    integrate the assessment policy manual with support/ resources; ie link to the Assessment
         section of the forthcoming Practical Guide to Teaching online resource located at the new
         Learning and Teaching website
    •    policies should be broad; yet support diversity of practice at local contexts
    •    greater opportunities for professional learning around assessment; induction program for
         processes & policies (at institutional/ school/ program levels)
                                                                                               107
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                      APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

    •    foster scholarship around assessment eg develop resources that focus on relevant
         educational and pedagogical theories
    •    identify assessment indicators that can then be used in benchmarking to develop broad
         assessment standards.



Recommendation No. 3:
That the impact of policy implementation on assessment practice is examined and monitored
for improvement; for example:
    • address the need for consistency of policy implementation across Schools/Colleges/RMIT
    • further examine RMIT assessment policies and procedures within the AQTF context to i)
       determine any areas of potential conflict; ii) provide advice for necessary changes to policy
       context if there is potential conflict
    • investigate the impacts on student and staff assessment workloads
    • investigate the impact of new policy directions on assessment practices (eg Learning and
       Teaching Strategy; WIL Policy to change assessment practices; use of ICT in learning
       initiatives such as MOP, REAP, ePortfolios).


Recommendation No. 4:
That ways to develop assessment standards are investigated; for example:
   • from examining good assessment practice within RMIT and beyond, develop a variety of
      models/ practices related to assessment design, managing and reporting assessment,
      assessing student work
   • share and document good assessment practices across RMIT through formal and informal
      networks, forums, events; and draw upon these in the development of assessment standards
   • examine and develop appropriate assessment standards related to appropriate assessment
      workloads for the different levels/ program areas (eg VET, UG, PG coursework).


Recommended priorities for action in the short term (to December 2008)
The above recommendations provide both short and longer term ideas for strategic action for
consideration in developing a more detailed implementation plan for 2009/10. This implementation
plan should be coordinated through the activities of the RMIT’s Learning and Teaching Unit and
will be outlined broadly in the final TQI Project report to the Australian Learning and Teaching
Council.

The following recommended priorities for action support the initial implementation of
Recommendation No. 2 related to the development of the RMIT Assessment Policies and
Procedures Manual for 2009.
   i) TQI Project Officer with ARG, develop the RMIT Assessment Policies and Procedures
   Manual with a view that it is regularly updated. Strongly suggest annual update to capture any
   policy review and/or new policy development related to assessment.

    ii) TQI Project Officer with LTU, develop a framework for an Assessment section in the new
    online resource being developed in the Practical Guide to Teaching for the new RMIT Learning
    and Teaching website. This will complement the assessment manual to provide online resource
    support to teaching staff. The short term priority is to establish the framework for the section
    and provide initial text and some resources by end Nov 2008 with a view of ongoing
    development and addition of resources. The template for each section to include:
                                                                                                108
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                            APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

                   •    brief text introducing the concept (eg designing assessment; managing and
                        reporting assessment)
                   •    examples of practice – this will incorporate multimedia clips of RMIT teaching
                        staff describing/ demonstrating their good assessment practice
                   •    resources – this will include links to other e-resources relevant to the assessment
                        concept
                   •    links to the RMIT Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual – to assist staff/
                        students to make explicit connections to the relevant university policy/s in order
                        to guide their assessment practice


    iii) For purposes of managing the examples, case studies, models, exemplars from and/or
    identified by schools of good assessment practice that will be used in the Assessment section of
    the online resource Practical Guide to Teaching, LTU coordinates the development of a register
    of good assessment practices by staff/ teams within schools across the academic colleges of the
    university. These examples will provide data of current good practice and build our
    understandings for developing assessment related standards, particularly qualitative measures
    that can be explored in 2009-10.

    iv) LTU in collaboration with the Office of the Academic Registrar’s Group and the Deans
    Academic Development, develop a communication/ implementation plan for staff/student
    engagement with the inaugural RMIT Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual (Jan/Feb
    2009).




                                                                                                       109
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix A: RMIT Assessment Standards Project Plan




                                                                                        110
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                                                           Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


  ALTC Teaching Quality Indicators Project: Overview of RMIT Project Plan for Assessment Dimension [revised 3 June 2008]
                                                                                                                       RMIT Assessment Standards Project
                                            TASK                       RATIONALE                                                 STRATEGY                                                        OUTPUT                                  TIMELINE
  Overview of                                             The ATN Academic Standards Model               Web-based research of selected institutions for their           Report of findings that identifies emerging trends and issues   May-June
                                                          report (Jan 08) identified that all            Assessment Policy & related institutional support for           from comparing and contrasting different institutional          2008
  Assessment                                              universities examined had assessment           implementation of assessment policy.                            policy contexts.
  Policy &                                                policy. However, there’s little description                                                                    - provides benchmarking context for RMIT’s self
  Institutional                                           of the detail.                                 This involves mapping assessment policy and institutional       assessment: What are we doing well? Where are the areas
  Support                                                 The task builds on the earlier ATN work        support at each institution (ie ATN members; high performing    for improvement? (evidence based; and use ALTC audit as
                                                          to provide a richer examination of             L&T unis: UNSW, UQ; UoW, Monash).                               RMIT baseline data)
                                                          assessment policy.

                                            Part A:                                                      Gain data from the perspectives of:                             RMIT Assessment Standards: Advancing Learning and               June-Aug
                                            Staff                                                        - Portfolio: DADs                                               Teaching Forum I                                                2008
                                            perspective                                                  - Schools: Directors, T&L                                       -June/July 2008 with a follow up in Oct/Nov 08
                                                                                                         - Programs: Program/Course Coord
                                                                                                         to identify exemplars; issues of implementation; focus on       Interim report of emerging trends and issues from
Current RMIT Assessment Policy & Practice




                                                                                                         practices for learning and standards                            comparing and contrasting practices across portfolios &
                                                          Preliminary discussions between ARG,                                                                           schools                                                         AUQA S/A
                                                          P&Q, & LTD have identified that there is       Uni-wide forum & use of semi-structured interviews/ focus       - forms part of Draft Assessment Chapter in Self                draft due: end
                                                          a need to understand the current practices     groups                                                          Assessment Process of AUQA                                      Aug08
                                                          of assessment policy across the institution.
                                            Part B:       Anecdotal evidence suggests that there is a    [A] Analyse a significant purposeful sample of course guides                                                                    July - Sept
                                            Curriculum    lack of shared understanding and practice      from each academic portfolio to examine quality of curriculum   Interim report of emerging trends and issues from               2008
                                                          of assessment across the institution.          design, eg: constructive alignment; diversity in assessment;    comparing and contrasting practices across portfolios &
                                            perspective
                                                                                                         links to WIL and e-Portfolio initiative.                        schools
                                                                                                         Use of course guides downloaded from RMIT website               - are there relationships b/w program guides/ course guides/
                                            Part C:                                                      [B] Analyse the CES data related to the same sample used in     student feedback?
                                            Student                                                      Part B to correlate student experience with quality of          - work with Anthony Bedford and his CES project to draw
                                            perspective                                                  curriculum design over time (2 yrs data – if available).        on the project’s data analysis to assist in identifying a
                                                                                                         Use of matching CES data available over time                    meaningful sample size and target.

                                            Part D:       Collation of findings across the three         Draw conclusions and recommendations from the three interim     -Academic Board – presentation & discussion (Oct 08)            Sept-Nov
                                            Analysis of   interim reports to determine areas of          reports                                                         -RMIT Assessment Stds Forum II (Oct/Nov08)                      2008
                                            interim       congruence and dissonance in RMIT                                                                              -Final report of current RMIT assessment policy &
                                                          assessment practices with its policy                                                                           practices. Incl recommendations related to identification of
                                            reports
                                                                                                                                                                         shared principles to inform ARG’s proposed assessment           AUQA S/A
                                                                                                                                                                         policy framework & any further revision to assessment           draft due:
                                                                                                                                                                         policy /procedures                                              Dec08
                                                                                                                                                                         -Final Draft version of Assessment chapter of AUQA self
                                                                                                                                                                         assessment report




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          111
  RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix B: The Forum Delegate List




Forum Delegate List and representation of the College structure




                                                                                        112
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Registration List of Forum Delegates: Tue 5 Aug 2008
 Surname                    First Name   Portfolio
 Adams                      Kevin        Business
 Allan                      Garry        LTU/ EduTAG
 Anderson                   Jennifer     DSC
 Atkinson                   Lyn          Business
 Babacan                    Alperhan     Business
 Barber                     Jim          DVC (Academic)
 Bedford                    Anthony      SET
 Bell                       David        VET
 Beverland                  Michael      Business
 Blackburn                  Margaret     LTU
 Bondy                      Julian       DSC
 Botterill                  Meaghan      EduTAG
 Budge                      Kylie        DSC
 Cahill                     Daryl        BUS
 Chester                    Andrea       SET
 Chow                       Christine    SET
 Christensen                Anne-marie   SET
 Clarke                     Angela       DSC
 Costabile                  Laurie       VET
 Cowlishaw                  Keith        DSC
 Ellis                      Peter        DSC
 Ellis                      Fiona        ARG
 Fallshaw                   Eveline      Business
 Fehring                    Heather      DSC
 Ferguson                   Roy          SET
 Green                      Ralph        SET
 Greenwood                  Ken          SET
 Holkner                    Jeanette     SET
 Holland                    Bernie       SET
 Horsfield                  Peter        DSC
 Jackson                    Margaret     Business
 Jollands                   Margaret     SET
 Jones                      Linda        SET
 Jones                      Martyn       DSC
 Jones                      Sandra       LTU
 Kaider                     Friederika   Business
 Kemlo                      Lila         Business
 Kirk                       Joyce        Students
 Kootsookos                 Alex         SET
 Leavold                    Sally        VET
 Louka                      Amgad        LTU
 Lyford                     Theresa      VET
 Maloney                    Noel         VET
 Matthews                   Graham       SET
 Maxwell                    Sherridan    VET
 McElgunn                   David        VET
 McMaster                   Maddy        ARG
 Mills                      Anthony      DSC
 Milton                     John         LTU
 Molyneaux                  Tom          SET
 Surname                    First Name   Portfolio
                                                                                        113
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

 Morley                     Clive       Business
 Mossuto                    Mark        VET
 Muir                       Peter       SET
 Munro-Smith                Nigel       Business
 Myers                      Paul        Business
 Nankervis                  Karen       DSC
 Newstead                   Patricia    VET
 Nomikoudis                 Milton      LTU
 Novak                      Brenda      LTU
 Patten                     Jason       VET
 Patterson                  Craig       ARG
 Peterson                   Fiona       DSC
 Reid                       Julianne    SET
 Richardson                 Joan        Business
 Rook                       Trevor      SET
 Scott                      James       SET
 Shacklock                  Geoff       DSC
 Shang                      Ling        TAFE
 Shortis                    Mark        SET
 Shortis                    Mark        SET
 Simpson                    Rowan       ARG
 Smith                      Ross        Business
 Smith                      Helen       VET
 Stacey                     Andrew      SET
 Stanbrough                 Dale        SET
 Steiner                    Tom         SET
 Steiner                    Tom         SET
 Tam                        Audrey      SET
 Taylor                     Ian         Students
 Wagner                     Regine      DSC
 Wake                       Alex        DSC
 Westberg                   Kate        Business
 Wootton                    Andrew      SET



Abbreviations
VET – Vocational Education & Training (TAFE)
BUS/ Business – Business College
SET – Science, Engineering & Technology College
DSC – Design & Social Context College
ARG – Academic Registrar’s Group, Students Portfolio
LTU – Learning and Teaching Unit, DVC Academic Portfolio
Students – Students Portfolio




                                                                                        114
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                             APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation



RMIT College structure showing the Schools that exist within each academic college
           Business College              Design and Social Context             Science, Engineering and
                                                                                      Technology
Accounting and Law                  Applied Communication                Aerospace, Mechanical and
                                                                         Manufacturing Engineering
Business Information Technology     Architecture and Design              Applied Sciences
Business TAFE School                Art                                  Civil, Environmental and Chemical
                                                                         Engineering
Economics, Finance and Marketing    Creative Media                       Computer Science and Information
                                                                         Technology
Graduate School of Business         Design (TAFE)                        Electrical and Computer Engineering
Management                          Education                            Engineering (TAFE)
                                    Fashion and Textiles                 Health Sciences
                                    Global Studies, Social Science and   Life and Physical Sciences
                                    Planning
                                    Property, Construction and Project   Mathematical and Geospatial
                                    Management                           Sciences
                                                                         Medical Sciences




                                                                                                        115
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix C: Forum program




RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum
RMIT Storey Hall, Tues 5 Aug 2008




                                                                                        116
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                         APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation




                      RMIT Assessment Standards Project
               Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum
                                               Purpose of the Forum
The purpose of the Forum is to engage key academic staff in re-visioning assessment policy and practices at RMIT. Some key
questions that will focus the work by delegates at the Forum include:
     •    What are our current assessment policies and practices?
     •    What are our assessment standards?
     •    How do we know our assessment policies and practices are reflecting quality?
     •    How do our assessment policies and practices compare with other institutions?
     •    What are the gaps/ silences?
     •    What measures do we put in place to ensure we sustain quality standards for assessment dimension?
     •    Identify case studies, exemplars and issues related to good practice in assessment

                                                       Program
Time             Program                                                            Presenter/ Facilitator
9.00 am          Registration in Storey Hall Auditorium Foyer

9.20 am          Welcome & Overview of Forum in Storey Hall Auditorium              Dr Josephine Lang,
                                                                                    Learning & Teaching Fellow, RMIT
9.30 am          Academic Registrar Group’s perspective                             Dr Maddy McMaster,
                                                                                    Academic Registrar, RMIT
9.45 am          DVC Academic perspective                                           Prof Jim Barber,
                 includes Launch of Learning & Teaching Leaders Forum               DVC Academic, RMIT

10.00 am         RMIT Assessment Standards Project emerges                          Dr Josephine Lang
                                                                                    Learning & Teaching Fellow, RMIT
10.30am          Morning Tea in Storey Hall Auditorium Foyer

10.55 am         Assessment in University contexts: where to from here?             A/Prof Janice Orrell
                 with Question & Answer session (10 mins) in Storey Hall            Consultant specialist in assessment
                 Auditorium

11.35 am         Workshop session: RMIT Assessment Understandings & Issues
                 identified

12.40 pm         Sharing themes from discussions & Close                            A/Prof Janice Orrell
                                                                                    Consultant specialist in assessment
1.10 pm          Lunch (1.10- 2.00 pm) in Storey Hall Auditorium Foyer


                                            Pre-Forum Reading Pack
In preparation for the Forum, last week you received your Pre-Forum Reading Pack and you were asked to bring these
materials with you today. The Pack contained:
     • Forum Program
     • A/Prof Janice Orrell’s biography
     • RMIT Guide to Assessment: A Proposed Framework (June 2008)
     • RMIT Overarching Assessment Principles (2001)
     • RMIT Assessment Charter (2003)
     • RMIT Asssessment Standards Project: Overview of current assessment policy in the Australian Higher
         Education context (Draft Preliminary Report).

                                                                                                                          117
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Appendix D: Forum Presentations



RMIT Assessment Standards Project emerges
Presentation by Dr Josephine Lang


Assessment in university contexts: where to from here?
Presentation by A/Professor Janice Orrell




                                                                                        118
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix E: The Pre-Forum Reading Pack




The Pre-Forum Reading Pack contained:
   • Forum Program (including its purpose)
   • A/Prof Janice Orrell’s biography
   • RMIT Guide to Assesment: A Proposed Framework (June 2008)
   • RMIT Overarching Assessment Principles (2001)
   • RMIT Assessment Charter (2003)
   • RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Overview of current assessment policy in the
      Australian Higher Education context (Draft Preliminary Report).




                                                                                        119
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                 APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix F: Forum Notebook




The Forum Notebook was used by each workshop group to capture the key points in their
discussions. These Notebooks were collected at the end of the Forum and this report is based on
these data.




                                                                                           120
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix G: Forum Evaluation Instrument




                                                                                        121
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                        APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation




                      RMIT Assessment Standards Project
               Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum
                                                 EVALUATION
Please circle the response that best reflects your experience of the Forum. You have the opportunity to add comments
should you wish.

                                                                                            Strongly              strongly
                                                                                             disagree                agree
Reflection on the Program sessions:
1. The introductory briefings provided useful context to the RMIT                             1     2    3    4        5
Assessment Standards Project (ie presentations by Maddy McMaster, Jim Barber &
Josephine Lang)

Comments?




2. The Assessment in University contexts presentation (by Janice Orrell)                      1     2    3    4        5
provided useful stimulus for consideration by our workshop group

Comments?



3. The Workshop session provided the opportunity to discuss & identify key                    1     2    3    4        5
issues on assessment within the RMIT policy and practice context

Comments?



4. The workshop & debrief sessions were well facilitated                                      1     2    3    4        5

Comments?




                                                                                                                    122
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                            APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


                                                                                Strongly               strongly
                                                                                 disagree                 agree
Reflection on the Forum organisation:
5. The Pre-Forum Reading Pack was a useful resource for your preparation          1     2    3     4       5
for the Forum

Comments?




6. The food and beverages provided met your needs                                 1     2    3     4       5

Comments?




7. Your experience of the Forum’s organisation was that it was efficient          1     2    3     4       5

Comments?




8. I’m interested in participating in a future follow-up forum (Oct/Nov 2008)

                                                                   Yes                        No


9. Do you have any further comments you wish to make about the Forum?




         Many thanks for your participation in the Forum and the completion of this survey.


                                          Josephine Lang
                                  RMIT Learning & Teaching Fellow



                                                                                                         123
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

Appendix H: Consultant’s report on the review of the
Assessment Standards Forum




Brief report of the review of the RMIT on Assessment Standards Forum prepared by Associate
Professor Janice Orrell




                                                                                        124
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                        APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


                    Brief Report to RMIT on Assessment Standards Forum
                               Report prepared by: A/Prof Janice Orrell


General Overview

RMIT is in a state of rapid change in terms of infrastructure, organisational operations framework
and policy development. Clearly this is due in part to senior administrative changes and recognition
by the new leadership of the existence of significant gaps and limitations. There are also
considerable external pressures that have been confronted and opportunities that have been taken up
that have also made a major contribution to the scope and nature of the changes.

As an external consultant I have reviewed the assessment policy documentation and related
documents and it is my estimation that there is a solid, evidence-based policy framework in place
that should be a sound foundation to ascertain and enhance the quality of assessment practice at
RMIT. These policies should also go a long way to assist in the integration of the dual tertiary
sectors represented at RMIT.

At this point, it is my observation and strong recommendation that to add to, or change, the existing
high order documentation any further is not necessary and possibly undesirable. I recommend this
from two viewpoints. One is my view of the documentation suggests that it is extensive and
educationally sound. The second view is from my participation in the forum at which it was clear
that everyday staff and education leaders at RMIT need time to become familiar with the
documentation, to compare it with their current practice and to identify its implications for future
practice.

What is required at this point is a systematic plan of implementation of the existing policies and
procedures that will engage academic leadership at a departmental level in the change process.
Several steps are important in this process.

1. Developing a base line understanding.
   They need to have a reliable base line set of data about current assessment practice in terms of:
      What is assessed?
      How is it assessed? (Is it valid?)
      What frame of reference is used to produce grades?
      How is the reliability of grades assured?
      How are standards articulated and maintained?
      Are their departmental concerns about academic honesty?
      What is the cost of assessment in terms of academic time and funds for part time assessors?

2. Establish an agreed target(s) for change
This review should be rewarded, supportive, be non-punitive and encourage the setting of realistic
targets for change. These might be:
    • to establish and use systems for effective implementation of the moderation process,
    • to have more efficient assessment processes that reduce time on tasks for academics and
         students but produce higher quality learning;
    • more comprehensive education on academic honesty and citation processes and more
         transparent and consistent use of the rules regarding academic dishonesty


                                                                                                     125
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                          APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

     •    More diverse and authentic assessment that assists students to produce evidence of their
          graduate capabilities in employment seeking.
     •    Devising descriptors of standards of achievement that are negotiated with the relevant
          external professional and employment stakeholders.

3. Allocation of appropriate resources.
Rather than adopt a one size fits all, wise and judicious responses to this challenge should be
rewarded. For example, if the department budget has been freed up by less cost in marking, let
them keep the funds as discretionary. Ensure that teaching loads are not increased if they find more
educationally sound but more efficient ways of assessing. These strategies have been used in UK
Universities where some departments reduced their assessment costs to 15% of their former level.

Efforts such as large scale forums and resources for individual academics do little to change the
status quo or gain better conformity to the new policies. Change has to occur at the Department
level and for this to occur it must be supported by the departmental leadership. Leaders need to
engage in mandated programmes to enhance their literacy about assessment and its impact on
student learning, departmental efficiency and institutional quality assurance. They need to have
rewards for doing so and confidence that they will have access to resources to make the necessary
changes.

The resources should include:
• Access to face to face expert advice at the departmental level to address their selected targets.
• Exemplars (on-line, with contact details) of non-traditional assessment practices that have
   evidence of proven benefit in terms of increased efficiency, enhanced student engagement and
   improved student learning outcomes.


Forum Observations

The following are my observations from the discussions I participated in at the Forum.

•   Staff are anxious at the pace and breadth of change and need support in focusing their efforts
    and establishing realistic targets. They feel out of control and as a result their response seems to
    be passive aggressive resulting in a desire to withdraw or sabotage compliance.

•   The TAFE sector feels overlooked in terms of what it has already achieved and the limitations
    faced by pressures from their related industry. While they can see that there are many
    possibilities and advantages in the greater integration with the HE sector they feel that they
    already have much to offer relating to contemporary assessment issues, such as setting
    standards, that they have attended to some time ago. They would like to feel that the integration
    is more mutual and feel like partners in the process.

    In addition, they have felt constrained in the past by the inflexibility of industry and its
    requirements. They now feel additional constraint from new institutional rules regarding
    assessment. Dialogue with the TAFE sector related to Mastery learning and critical scrutiny of
    the policy in this regard may produce a much needed solution.

•   There were questions raised about the grading system and its capacity to report development in
    learning. I am not convinced that this is a problem with the policy but more a problem of
    academics not knowing how to design assessment and use the existing systems to associate with
    this type of reporting of learning outcome.

                                                                                                     126
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                      APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


•   Questions were also raised about comparability of scope, workload etc between courses. It is
    my view once again that if the moderation systems that have been designed were being
    systematically used at the Academic Organisational Unit (AOU) level, it would be feasible to
    begin to deal with this issue.

•   The following observations were made by the staff in their discussions:
       1. They would like to move to more authentic forms of assessment, (i.e. move away from
           essays and examinations) but need advice and examples for executing this.
       2. They would like an on-line menu of assessments that outlines advantages and
           challenges.
       3. They would like to think that there is greater diversity in the assessment they use. They
           recognise that this need to be negotiated at the AOU or course level to ensure that
           students are not having all group work in one semester or other such overloads or
           omissions.
       4. They feel that they are teaching at the lowest cognitive levels to assure themselves that
           students have acquired the necessary factual information. They would like to move to
           higher order thinking but need strategies to ensure students are developing accurate
           understanding of the basic concepts. There are strategies that I offered for this, but a
           comprehensive set of resources available on line would be useful.
       5. They call for induction of leaders to the new documentation so help them understand the
           implications and implement the procedures.
       6. The liked the manual but felt that it was weak in procedures and would like to see best
           practices included.
       7. They recognised the importance of feedback to students and one group called for week 6
           to be devoted to feedback and this could be taken from on of the 3 examination weeks as
           this was not utilised.
       8. They called for on-going professional development of leaders and for academics to
           manage the changes.
       9. They were adamant that there was need for flexibility, no one size fits all because of the
           diversity of programmes at RMIT; however, there was also recognition that the sheer
           size of RMIT and its programmes was an issue.




                                                                                                127
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                       APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation

On the Forum itself

I was most impressed at the level of engagement of those who attended and their honesty in
discussing the issues they raised. So attendance and engagement were very positive attributes.

The staff would have felt more empowered if someone from senior management had been present at
the end to hear their suggestions and perhaps help to establish some overall institutional targets for
change. This could have provided some more concrete impetus for change.

I suspect that the attendees needed more time for discussion. I would recommend a structure for the
following workshop in which there is a very brief introduction at which there is some kind of
statement of response to the concerns raised at this forum. Following this VERY BRIEF initial
statement, they could be given topics to discuss (as was this time) and some clear headings to which
they must report. During the report time a senior member of staff should be present. You may wish
to have a keynote to conclude and enthuse.

Concluding Comments

I truly commend the comprehensive and sound work that you are doing and producing at RMIT in
regard to assessment. I am very impressed with its quality and scope and anything I have written
here that sounds in anyway negative is merely meant to be a suggestion for you to consider for the
future.




                                                                                                  128
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                     APPENDIX C
                       Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum: Report & Evaluation


Appendix I: Forum resources




This appendix contains the handouts that were distributed on the day of the Forum:
   - Forum program
   - Summary of workshop discussion questions
   - Evaluation form
   - Resource: Assessment, Learning & Teaching Values from Leeds University UK
   - for the Forum Notebook see Appendix F


It also contains the request by Forum Delegates to A/Prof Janice Orrell to share a couple of
resources that she had raised in her keynote presentation ie:
    - A/Prof Janice Orrell’s generic assessment rubric
    - Reference to the assessment leadership article by Mantz Yorke




                                                                                               129
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
APPENDIX D




                 Review of Assessment Policy
             in the Australian University Context
            A report for the RMIT Assessment Standards Project that forms part of the
         Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s Teaching Quality Indicators Project.




November 2008




                                                                                           130
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix
                                                                                                                                                                           APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                        Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context



Contents

SECTION ONE: INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 132
    CONTEXTUAL BACKGROUND ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 132
      Purpose of this inquiry and report ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 132
      Making links to the RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Forum .......................................................................................................................................................................... 132
      Making links to previous recent work in the area of assessment in the university sector ........................................................................................................................................ 133
      In summary .............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 133
SECTION TWO: ENVIRONMENTAL SCAN OF THE ASSESSMENT POLICY CONTEXT ........................................................................................................................... 134
SECTION THREE: EXAMINATION OF OVERARCHING ASSESSMENT PHILOSOPHY AND PRINCIPLES .......................................................................................... 158
    COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF SECTION THREE UNIVERSITY DATA TABLES .................................................................................................................................................................... 174
      The concept of an assessment policy manual........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 175
      Making assessment philosophy explicit ................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 175
      Making assessment principles explicit ..................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 175
      Key emergent themes in assessment principles ........................................................................................................................................................................................................ 175
      Analysis and key findings ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 176
      RMIT’s performance ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................ 177
SECTION FOUR: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS ......................................................................................................................................................................... 179
REFERENCES ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 179




                                                                             Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                  Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                  131
                                                                                                                                          APPENDIX D
                                                                                       Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context


Section One: Introduction
This report contributes to the RMIT Assessment Standards Project that forms part of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s national initiative and pilot
project: Teaching Quality Indicators Project.

The report contains four sections:
    1. Introduction – provides the context and purposes of the inquiry that is summarised in this report
    2. Environmental scan of the assessment policy context – provides an overview of the general characteristics of the assessment policy and major levels of
        support for implementation within the Australian university sector
    3. Examination of overarching assessment philosophy and principles – analysis of emergent key themes guiding assessment policies and practices across the
        Australian university sector
    4. Conclusion and recommendations – provides advice for enhancing RMIT’s assessment policy context as a result of the report’s comparative analysis.



Contextual background
The RMIT Assessment Standards Project was the outcome of two complementary initiatives: i) the ATN Academic Standards initiative that is coordinated by the
ATN P/DVCs (Academic) for the ATN VCs; and ii) the Australian Learning and Teaching Council’s initiative, the Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) Project. The
RMIT Assessment Standards Project was a key focus for the TQI Project for the latter half of 2008 and the work undertaken also supported the ATN Academic
Standards initiative from the Assessment perspective and provided relevant data and analysis for the AUQA 2009 cycle. Accordingly, the work undertaken for the
RMIT Assessment Standards Project situated the TQI and ATN initiatives within the RMIT context.

Purpose of this inquiry and report
The purpose of this task is to provide an environmental scan of current assessment policy within the Australian Higher Education context in order to:
    • analyse the trends of the types of matters that are covered by assessment policy
    • compare RMIT’s current assessment policy within the Australian Higher Education context
    • provide advice on areas for improvement within RMIT’s assessment policy context.

This task builds on the earlier work for the ATN DVC/PVCs Academic on learning and teaching standards for the ATN 2. In the ATN report (Bierbaum & Lang
2008), current learning and teaching policies and support were benchmarked across i) the ATN members (Curtin, QUT, RMIT, UniSA, UTS); ii) a sample of high
performing learning and teaching Australian universities (UNSW, UQ, UoW, Monash); and two international universities (Harvard and Oxford).

For the purposes of this inquiry, the TQI dimension of institutional climate and systems was examined within the sample of Australian universities used in the ATN
report and, since this task is also related to the TQI Project, it also included the TQI member institutions. Table 1.1 indicates the universities that are examined for
the purposes of this task. Table 1.1 also identifies the institutions that were allocated funds via the DEEWR’s 2008 Learning and Teaching Performance Fund,
indicating the Australian Government’s reward to institutions demonstrating learning and teaching excellence. The data were compiled using a desktop research
approach.

One area of the findings within the ATN report (2008) reflected on assessment. The report found that generally high performing learning and teaching universities
grouped clearly learning and teaching policies, including assessment, on their websites and were easily accessible. Furthermore, when compared with others, the
ATN universities appeared to address many of the learning and teaching policy elements that others had, but frequently the ATN members lacked the level of detail
that others in the Higher Education sector had or were in the process of developing more coherent and comprehensive approaches. Generally, with the exception of
RMIT, the ATN members had recently developed (during early 2007) a ‘manual’ that housed all their assessment related policies and procedures. This practice is
evident of good practice and it is a characteristic of the high performing learning and teaching universities. This recent practice is seen as an important development
within the ATN with respect to policy implementation as it ensures that teaching staff and students are able to access readily the assessment policy and procedural
information (see Bierbaum & Lang 2008; section 3.3 Learning and Teaching Policies). This is an area that needs improvement at RMIT and the RMIT Assessment
Standards Project is set to address this issue.

The report also agreed with Hamish Coates 3 original ACER Report’s recommendations that more work within the ATN was needed in the are of the assessment
context to ascertain areas for benchmarking and sharing to inform development of academic standards in assessment policy and practice (see Beirbaum & Lang
2008; section 4: ACER Recommendation No. 6 [Priority 2]). The ATN report included recommendations for i) detailed analysis of the assessment policy context
across the ATN institutions to identify similarities and differences; and ii) draw upon the theoretical conceptualisations underpinning both the ATN Academic
Standards and ALTC TQI Project initiatives to develop advice on possibilities for shared areas related to assessment policy, procedures and practices that could be
worked on/ trialled to inform shared assessment practices for the ATN Academic Standards Model.


Table 1.1: The Australian universities examined for the purposes of this task and their membership/status
                                                                                                        Macquarie




                                                                                                                                                                             Monash
                                                                                                                             Griffith
                                                                                                                    Deakin




                                                                                                                                                                UNSW
                                                  Curtin




                                                                                  UniSA
                                                                        RMIT




                                                                                                                                                  UWA

                                                                                                                                                         UTas




                                                                                                                                                                       UoW
                                                             QUT




                                                                                             UTS




                                                                                                                                        UQ




Australian Technology Network of Universities                                            
(ATN) member
Teaching Quality Indicators (TQI) project                                                                                                         
member
Identified high performing learning & teaching                                                                                                                            
university in the ATN report (Bierbaum & Lang
2008)
DEEWR Learning and Teaching Performance                                                                                                                              
Fund allocations 2008



Making links to the RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Forum
On Tuesday 5 August 2008, the RMIT Assessment Standards Project: Advancing Learning and Teaching Excellence Forum was held at Storey Hall. The Forum
brought together key people from across RMIT in areas such as the Portfolio Academic Development Staff, Heads of Schools, Directors of Teaching and Learning,
and Program and Course Coordinators that have a keen interest in and/ or responsibility for learning, teaching and assessment. The Forum offered an opportunity for
Delegates to engage with the process of re-visioning RMIT’s assessment policy context to enhance the quality of learning and teaching. A draft preliminary version
of this report was provided to Forum Delegates as part of the Pre Forum Reading Pack. The draft preliminary report provided Forum Delegates with a background
context of assessment in the Higher Education for their deliberation at the Forum. A forum report and evaluation has been prepared and forms part of the resources
developed for the RMIT Assessment Standards Project.


2
  Bierbaum, R. & Lang, J. (2008) Response to the ACER Report on the ATN Academic Standards Model: Advice and Recommendations (January
2008), A response prepared for the Australian Technology Network’s DVC/PVCs (Academic), unpublished.
3
  Coates, H. (2007) ATN Academic Standards Model, commissioned by the ATN’s P/DVC (Academic), Australian Council for Educational Research,
unpublished.
                                                      Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                               Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                   132
                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX D
                                                                                    Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

Making links to previous recent work in the area of assessment in the university sector
It also appears that the last commissioned major work that investigated the issue of assessment across the Australian university sector is the work undertaken by the
Centre for the Study for Higher Education, The University of Melbourne (2002). This work was commissioned by Australian Universities Teaching Committee and
culminated in the online resource, Assessing learning in Australian universities: ideas, strategies and resources for quality in student assessment. The work
investigated good practice of assessment within the Higher Education sector and identified significant gaps and inconsistencies between institutional policy and
practices. A key research output was the development of the resource that is now available online, and which identified five contemporary assessment issues in
higher education:
     1. Capturing the potential of online assessment
     2. Designing efficient and effective assessment for large classes
     3. Responding to plagiarism and developing policies to foster academic honesty
     4. Using assessment to guide effective group work
     5. Recognising the needs of students unfamiliar with assessment practices in Australian Higher Education.

The project also re-positioned assessment in the Higher Education by re-defining assessment as a critical part of the learning process. Three objectives for quality in
student assessment in higher education were outlined:
    •    Assessment that guides and encourages effective approaches to learning;
    •    Assessment that validly and reliably measures expected learning outcomes, in particular the higher-order learning that characterises higher education; and
    •    Assessment and grading that define and protect academic standards.

From the perspectives of the students, the project described three key elements of assessment that are valued:
    • Unambiguous expectations – need for transparency and clear expectations of assessment tasks
    • Authentic tasks – connect with and reflect ‘real world’ tasks as part of assessment
    • Choice and flexibility – ability to access (and, where appropriate, negotiate) diversity of assessment.

Finally, the CSHE inquiry identified and described sixteen indicators of quality for effective assessment in higher education:
     1. Assessment is treated by staff and students as an integral component of the entire teaching and learning process.
     2. The multiple roles of assessment are recognised. The powerful motivating effect of assessment requirements on students is understood and assessment tasks
          are designed to foster valued study habits.
     3. There is faculty/departmental policy that guides assessment practices. Subject assessment is integrated into an overall plan for course assessment.
     4. There is a clear alignment between expected learning outcomes, what is taught and learnt, and the knowledge and skills assessed.
     5. Assessment tasks assess the capacity to analyse and synthesis new information and concepts rather than simply recall information which has been presented.
     6. A variety of assessment methods is employed so that the limitations of particular methods are minimised.
     7. Assessment tasks are designed to assess relevant generic skills as well as subject-specific knowledge and skills.
     8. There is a steady progression in the complexity and demands of assessment requirements in the later years of courses.
     9. There is provision for student choice in assessment tasks and weighting at certain times.
     10. Student and staff workloads are considered in the scheduling and design of assessment tasks.
     11. Excessive assessment is avoided. Assessment tasks are designed to sample student learning.
     12. Assessment tasks are weighted to balance the developmental (‘formative’) and judgemental (‘summative’) roles of assessment. Early low-stakes, low-
          weight assessment is used to provide students with feedback.
     13. Grades are calculated and reported on the basis of clearly articulated learning outcomes and criteria for levels of achievement.
     14. Students receive explanatory and diagnostic feedback as well as grades.
     15. Assessment tasks are checked to ensure there are not inherent biases that may disadvantage particular student groups.
     16. Plagiarism is minimised through careful task design, explicit education and appropriate monitoring of academic honesty.

This work continues to carry currency across the Australian university sector as it is regularly referred to in support resources for assessment and, as is shown in the
following snapshots of assessment policy contexts, these principles are often embedded in current university assessment policy at individual institutions.

Since then, the establishment of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council (formerly Carrick Institute) has continued to support projects that involve
investigating aspects of assessment practices within the Higher Education sector e.g. integration and assessment of graduate attributes in curriculum; and the priority
projects related to assessment standards, assessment practices and reporting.

In summary
This report is a significant activity of the RMIT Assessment Standards Project as it provides a strategic overview of the assessment policy in the Australian
university context and generates a comparative analysis of the characteristics of assessment policy. Drawing on the identified sample of Australian universities (ie
ATN members, TQI Project Pilot universities and key DEEWR’s 2008 LTPF awardees), the report develops an environmental scan of the assessment policy context.
The report:
    • summarises each institution’s profile on assessment policy that includes key principles of assessment and location/accessibility
    • analyses assessment policies across the university sector to determine key trends, themes, issues addressed
    • examines key themes of overarching assessment policy principles
    • comparatively analyses current RMIT assessment policy context with others in the Australian Higher Education sector
    • provides advice on opportunities for improvement to ensure quality in student assessment and their learning experience.




                                                    Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                      133
                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX D
                                                                                    Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context


Section Two: Environmental scan of the assessment policy context
This section of the report provides an overview of the general characteristics of the assessment policy within the sample of Australian universities used in this
inquiry. Each institution’s assessment policy context is summarised in a table that:
    • locates the relevant online locations of assessment policies and procedures and key support for academic staff
    • describes key areas covered by the organisation’s assessment policies and procedures
    • presents the overarching assessment philosophy and principles.

A brief analysis of the assessment policy context is then undertaken using a Plus, Minus, Interesting (PMI) analysis tool to provide a quick guide to issues that might
inform any changes considered to RMIT’s assessment policy context. This brief analysis was particularly useful for the Delegates participating in the Forum (Aug
2008).




                                                    Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                      134
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                    Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.1: Curtin University of Technology’s Assessment Policy
                                                                                                   Assessment Policy Details                                  Description                                                  Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                              2008 Assessment Manual:                     A manual of assessment policies and procedures for       Philosophy: Outcomes focused teaching and learning
                                                                                                                                          staff and students. It contains 70 pages and with 38     Curtin has an outcomes focussed teaching and learning framework and aims to provide excellent teaching and
                                                                                              Consolidated Policies and                   sections each identifying an aspect of assessment from   learning opportunities at all times.
                                                                                              Procedures                                  an academic or administration perspective.
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Excellent teaching and learning includes:
                                                                                                                                          Sections of the 2008 Manual are:                              •     intellectually challenging learning outcomes
                                                                                              Download PDF Assessment Policy              1. Introduction                                               •     engaging learning environments
                                                                                              and Procedure Manual at:                    2. Exceptions
                                                                                              http://policies.curtin.edu.au/policies/te                                                                 •     flexible learning opportunities
                                                                                                                                          3. University Assessment Policy and Principles                •     assessment that aligns with learning outcomes
                                                                                              achingandlearning.cfm                       4. University Grading System                                  •     systematic evaluation of teaching and learning.
                                                                                                                                          5. Responsibility for Academic Results
                                                                                              Status: Approved                            6. Role and Responsibilities of Board of Examiners
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Learning outcomes indicate what successful students can do as a result of their learning experiences.
                                                                                                                                          7. Calculation of SWA and CWA
                                                                                              Commencement Date: 01/01/2008               8. Satisfactory Course Progress
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Learning outcomes must be clearly stated, demonstrable, achievable and measurable. Assessment tasks are
                           Office of Teaching and Learning; http://lsn.curtin.edu.au/teach/




                                                                                                                                          9. Determining Academic Status
                                                                                              Date last modified: 17/04/2008                                                                       opportunities for students to demonstrate their achievement of learning outcomes.
                                                                                                                                          10. Conditional Status
                                                                                                                                          11. Termination from Course
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Assessment Principles
university of technology




                                                                                              Approval Authority: Academic Board          12. Academic Status Appeals
                                                                                                                                                                                                   In an outcomes framework, assessment is criterion-referenced. That is, assessment is made on the basis of
                                                                                                                                          13. Deferred Assessment
                                                                                              Policy Contact: Director, Student           14. Supplementary Assessment                             performance defined by pre-specified criteria, rather than norm-references where assessment is made on the
                                                                                              Services                                                                                             basis of performance relative to that of other members of the class or cohort.
                                                                                                                                          15. Inability to Complete a Final Examination
                                                                                                                                          16. Conceded Pass
                                                                                              The 2007 version was the first edition      17. Examinations Policy and Procedures                   Practices such as scaling marks and grading students to fit a normal distribution curve are inappropriate.
                                                                                              of the manual, which was reviewed                                                                    Student achievement of the outcomes at the level specified in the unit outline is the chief determinant of final
                                                                                                                                          18. Security of Examination Papers
                                                                                              for finalisation, January 2008.                                                                      results.
                                                                                                                                          19. Regulations for the Conduct of Examiners
                                                                                                                                          20. Student Access to Examination Answer Booklets
                                                                                              Related resource:                                                                                    Within this outcomes framework, the following principles apply to all assessment:
                                                                                                                                          21. Supervised Online Asssessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Assessment within a course
                                                                                                                                          22. Penalties for Late Submission
                                                                                                                                          23. Feedback on Assessment                               1. Within a course, assessment tasks:
                                                                                              eVALUate -                                                                                           • are developmental to ensure incremental achievement of the course learning outcomes which are derived from
                                                                                              (http://evaluate.curtin.edu.au) is          24. Assessment Appeals
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Curtin’s Graduate attributes
                                                                                                                                          25. Awards with Distinctions
University: Curtin




                                                                                              Curtin's online system for                                                                           • provide evidence of students' development of higher order thinking skills such as analysis, synthesis and
                                                                                              gathering and reporting student             26. Awards with Honours
                                                                                                                                                                                                   evaluation.
                                                                                              feedback on their perceptions of            27. Vice-Chancellor’s List
                                                                                                                                          28. Unit Outlines                                        2. Evaluations of overall student progress are based on multiple and diverse sources of evidence gathered from
                                                                                              the effectiveness of their learning                                                                  formative and summative assessment tasks.
                                                                                              experiences. eVALUate has two               29. Provision of Final Results to Students
                                                                                                                                          30. Academic Transcript                                  Assessment within a unit
                                                                                              survey instruments:                                                                                  1. Assessment tasks are linked directly to the unit learning outcomes.
                                                                                                                                          31. Recognition of Prior Learning
                                                                                                                                          32. Time Limit on Recognition of Units in a Course of    2. All details of assessment tasks, including their weighting, marking criteria, and penalties for late submission
                                                                                                                                                                                                   are explained clearly in the unit outline.
                                                                                               • a unit evaluation survey (which               Study
                                                                                                                                                                                                   3. The assessment load is determined by whatever is reasonable to assess students’ achievement of the learning
                                                                                                   asks students their perceptions of     33. Exclusion of Students from Clinical and Practical
                                                                                                                                               Placements                                          outcomes. As a general guide, a 25 credit unit should have a maximum of four assessment tasks, including an
                                                                                                   what helps and hinders their
                                                                                                                                          34. Academic Integrity, Plagiarism and Academic          examination (if appropriate).
                                                                                                   achievement of unit learning
                                                                                                                                               Misconduct                                          4. Students are entitled to clear, constructive and timely feedback on their learning after each assessment task.
                                                                                                   outcomes), and
                                                                                                                                          35. Double Degree Students                               5. Fair assessment is assured through:
                                                                                               •   a teaching evaluation survey                                                                    • Marking and grading in accordance with clearly communicated criteria.
                                                                                                   (which asks students to give           36. Ownership of Project Work and Essays
                                                                                                                                          37. Definitions                                          • Appropriate moderation procedures.
                                                                                                   feedback to individual teachers on                                                              • An appropriate range of types and modes of assessment (such as individual assignments, examinations,
                                                                                                   their teaching effectiveness).         38. Summary of Changes From 2007 Edition
                                                                                                                                                                                                   group-based activities and peer-assessment). The use of only one type or mode of assessment is not appropriate
                                                                                                                                                                                                   and care should be taken to ensure a range of techniques is employed so that any single type or mode does not
                                                                                                                                                                                                   excessively dominate.
                                                                                                                                                                                                   • Equivalence of assessment tasks when the unit is offered on more than one campus or in more than one mode
                                                                                                                                                                                                   of study (such as face to face and online). This means that assessment tasks may be adapted to suit the needs of
                                                                                                                                                                                                   campuses or modes of study, but they must be of equivalent complexity and nature, and they must always
                                                                                                                                                                                                   directly assess the unit learning outcomes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                   • Reasonable accommodations for students with a verified disability, medical or other condition.
                                                                                                                                                                                                   • As a general guide, a final examination should not be worth more than 50% of the unit mark in order to give
                                                                                                                                                                                                   students the opportunity to improve their performance based on feedback from previous assessments.

 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 The Assessment Manual collates all relevant policies and procedures within the ‘one place’ and is comprehensive. The Assessment Manual is relatively easy to
 locate and the pathway is intuitive. The online pathway is: From University homepage> Office of Teaching and Learning homepage> Scroll down to ‘Teaching at
 Curtin’ and select ‘Academic Policies and Procedures’ > select ‘Assessment Policy and Procedure Manual’. The Assessment Manual is housed on the University’s
 Policy webpage but it is well signposted from the central learning and teaching unit’s homepage. Once on this page the policy information details are explicitly
 presented, which describes the approval authority, current status of approval and date of update, and policy contact. The Manual is presented as a PDF (288kb) that
 can be viewed online or downloaded.

 It seems that the Manual was first drafted in 2007 and appears it is easily updated by the Approval Authority (Academic Board). It seems that the Manual will be
 refreshed each year e.g. it is currently titled: 2008 Assessment Manual: Consolidated Policies and Procedures. It was last updated in April 2008.

 Minus
 This is a comprehensive approach to development and implementation of Assessment within the organisation. It is difficult to find any ‘minus’ areas and so the
 identification here is a minor issue.

 The foundational text is the University’s philosophy and principles of assessment. They refer to ‘course’ and ‘unit’ principles, yet these are not defined (either in this
 section of the Manual or the ‘definitions’ section). Given that the Australian Higher Education sector uses these terms in many different ways these terms should be
 defined. Eventually, it becomes evident that a ‘course’ refers to the overall program of study (e.g. Bachelor of Education) and ‘unit’ refers to a subject in a program
 of study (e.g. Ed 125 Introduction to Curriculum).

 Interesting
 The concept of an annually refreshed Assessment Manual is both interesting and comprehensive. After the initial development of the Manual, there may be less
 emphasis or need for refreshing policies, however most universities seem to have a three year cycle for reviewing their assessment policies. It would be interesting to
 understand Curtin’s processes for refreshing the Assessment Manual and also how the Manual has been received and used by academic staff. Despite the fact that the
 Director, Student Services coordinated the development of the Manual, the focus of the Assessment Manual appears to be academic and teaching staff. Other
 universities (e.g. UniSA’s Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual 2008) have explicitly identified their assessment policies and procedures for both staff and
 students.




                                                                                                                                                  Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                 135
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.2: Queensland University of Technology’s (QUT) Assessment Policy
                                                                                                                                                                   Assessment Policy Details                                Description                                                          Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                                                                                               Chapter C/9.1 Assessment                 The online Manual of Policies and Procedures (MOPP)      Purpose of assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                        contains nine key chapters:                              Learning environments are designed to achieve clear learning outcomes. Assessment is an integral component
                                                                                                                                                               Policy                                        A. Governance and organisation                      of the learning environment. Assessment achieves the following major purposes:
                                                                                                                                                                                                             B. Human resources                                        •     encourage students to achieve the desired learning outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                             C. Teaching and learning                                  •     monitor students’ progress, and provide feedback so that students can plan future learning
                                                                                                                                                               Visit Teaching and Learning section
                                                                                                                                                                                                             D. Research and development                               •     assure academic standards certify achievement, and
                                                                                                                                                               of the Manual of Policies and
                                                                                                                                                                                                             E. Student services and administration                    •     provide data that can be aggregated to monitor the performance of academic programs and learning
                                                                                                                                                               Procedures (MOPP) at
                     Learning and Teaching; http://www.qut.edu.au/about/learnteach.jsp; Teaching and Learning Support Services: http://www.talss.qut.edu.au/




                                                                                                                                                                                                             F. Information management                                       environments.
                                                                                                                                                               http://www.mopp.qut.edu.au/
                                                                                                                                                                                                             G. Financial management
                                                                                                                                                                                                             H. Physical facilities
                                                                                                                                                               Or directly to Section 9: Assessment                                                              Assessment Principles
                                                                                                                                                                                                             I.    International and community engagement
                                                                                                                                                               of Students:                                                                                      In order to achieve the purposes of assessment, the following set of principles is used.
                                                                                                                                                               9.1 Asessment Policy
                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Assessment Policy is embedded in Chapter C
                                                                                                                                                               http://www.mopp.qut.edu.au/C/C_09_                                                                (a) Assessment is aligned with learning outcomes
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Teaching and Learning. The Teaching and Learning
                                                                                                                                                               01.jsp                                                                                            Good curriculum design starts with the desired learning outcomes, which inform the choice of the learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                        sections include:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 experiences and associated assessment strategies. Assessment links clearly to the learning objectives, content,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Teaching and learning framework
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 and teaching and learning approaches at unit and course level.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Teaching and learning development
                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Courses and awards
                                                                                                                                                               Status: This policy is currently under                                                            (b) Assessment is standards based
                                                                                                                                                                                                        4. Course development and approval, and quality
                                                                                                                                                               review – Contact Director, Academic                                                               Assessment is based on pre-determined and clearly articulated criteria and associated standards of knowledge,
                                                                                                                                                                                                             assurance
                                                                                                                                                               Policy and Programs for further                                                                   skills, competencies and/or capabilities.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        5. Non-award students and continuing education
                                                                                                                                                               details.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        6. Workplace learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (c) Assessment is valid and reliable
                                                                                                                                                                                                        7. Teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Valid assessment measures the desired learning outcomes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        8. Progression, attrition and unit completion
                                                                                                                                                               Contact Officer: Director, Academic
                                                                                                                                                                                                        9. Assessment of students
                                                                                                                                                               Policy and Programs                                                                               Reliability in assessment ensures that different markers make the same judgements about an individual
University of Technology




                                                                                                                                                                                                        10. Theses, dissertations and project reports.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 student’s achievements and/or that the same markers make the same judgements if students’ achievements are
                                                                                                                                                               Approval Date: 26/09/2003                                                                         re-assessed.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Drilling down, Chapter C Teaching and Learning,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Section 9: Assessment Policy contains:
                                                                                                                                                               Approval Authority: Academic Board                                                                (d) Assessment is coherent, comprehensive and sequenced
                                                                                                                                                                                                        9.1 Assessment policy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Assessment across a course and within a unit is coherent. Assessment is an integral part of the curriculum
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.1 Purpose of assessment
                                                                                                                                                               Date next review: 01/07/2007                                                                      design for any course or unit (see the assessment section of the Unit Outline proforma). Accordingly,
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.2 Principles of assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 assessment strategies for each course will include a consideration of the assessment profile across the whole
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.3 Approach to assessment – Criterion
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 course as well as assessment in individual units in order to ensure theat all the objectives of the course will be
                                                                                                                                                                                                               referenced Assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 achieved, including the full complement of knowledge, skills and graduate capabilities that are intended to be
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.4 Formative and summative assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 developed throughout the course. In this respect, both unit and course coordinators have a vital role to play in
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.5 Assessment of Graduate Capabilities
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 the design and execution of assessment items and strategies.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.6 Assessment patterns
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.7 Assessment in the first year of study
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Assessment is comprehensive in that it addresses the breadth of learning objectives outlined at unit and course
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.8 Self and Peer Assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 level, challenges the students to deeper learning, and provides opportunities for students to demonstrate their
University: Queensland




                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.9 Assessment of group work
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 full capabilities.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.10 Management of assessment in large
                                                                                                                                                                                                               classes
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Assessment is sequenced in that, over time, assessment items should build on prior experience and learning to
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.11 Assessment of workplace learning
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 allow students to demonstrate complex concepts and require students to link learning across different units in
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.12 Student performance as staff feedback
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 the course. In this respect the types of assessment items need to be chosen to reflect the nature of learning that
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.13 Assessment arrangements for persons with
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 occurs at different stages of the course.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               close or significant relationships with the
                                                                                                                                                                                                               assessor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (e) Assessment is equitable and inclusive
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.14 Transparency of Faculty/ School
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Assessment strategies provide equal opportunities for students from diverse backgrounds to excel. In doing so,
                                                                                                                                                                                                               Assessment Policies to Students
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 they exhibit social and cultural inclusivity.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1.15 Notification of assessment requirements
                                                                                                                                                                                                               9.1. 16 Roles and Responsibilities of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (f) Assessment is authentic
                                                                                                                                                                                                               Stakeholders
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Authentic assessment is relevant where possible to life and work contexts. It should be challenging, engaging
                                                                                                                                                                                                               Related Documents
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 and directly relevant to the learning objectives and content of the unit and course.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               Modification History
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 (g) Assessment provides feedback to staff
                                                                                                                                                                                                        9.2 QUT Grading System
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Assessment has a quality improvement and assurance dimension because it provides feedback for teaching
                                                                                                                                                                                                             9.2.1 Grading Scale
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 staff. Students’ misunderstandings that become evident through assessment provide insights for modifying
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Related Documents
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 teaching practices and/or unit content.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Modification History

                                                                                                                                                                                                        9.3 Procedures for academic dishonesty
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.1 What is academic dishonesty?
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.2 Application
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.3 Procedures for dealing with minor cases of
                                                                                                                                                                                                              academic dishonesty
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.4 Procedures for dealing with major cases of
                                                                                                                                                                                                              academic dishonesty
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.5 Procedures for dealing with cheating in
                                                                                                                                                                                                              central examinations
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.6 Penalties
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.7 Appeals
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.8 Records
                                                                                                                                                                                                              9.3.9 Reporting
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Related Documents
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Modification History



 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 The development of a university wide Manual of Policies and Procedures as that represented in QUT’s MOPP is a useful strategy to
 house relevant policy documents within one central function/area. Once located (e.g. through a keyword search or use of the “Policy”
 hotlink from the University’s homepage), MOPP is a useful governance tool and encourages a transparent policy implementation process.

 Minus
 The QUT’s Manual of Policies and Procedures (MOPP) where the assessment policies and procedures are embedded within Chapter C:
 Teaching and Learning section, is not linked via the University’s Learning and Teaching homepage. The way to locate the relevant
 assessment policies is to undertake a keyword search on the university’s website using the term: “assessment policy”. This results in
 directing you to the MOPP that contains the information required. Hence the navigational pathway is not readily visible for learning,
 teaching or assessment related policy within the intuitive location of the central function of the Learning and Teaching homepage or the
 Teaching & Learning Support Services (TALSS) homepage.

 Interesting
 The Assessment policy clearly links to the significant work done by QUT on graduate capabilities such as the “Teaching Capabilities
 Framework: Delivering outstanding student learning through excellence in teaching” 4. The Assessment policy is cross-referenced to the
 section of graduate capabilities in section C/1.4 that introduces the Teaching and Learning Framework and the place/role of graduate

 4
  PDF version of the document is located online at: http://www.talss.qut.edu.au/about/publications/tcf.pdf; or, it can be located as web version in the
 MOPP via: http://www.talss.qut.edu.au/staff/staffdev/reports.jsp
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                136
                                                                                                                                   APPENDIX D
                                                                                Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

capabilities within QUT’s learning and teaching context; and also the ATN Project on graduate capabilities 5. It is interesting to note that
the QUT is currently reviewing their Teaching Capabilities Framework within the policy context and it will be interesting to see how this
policy context evolves under this review. It is probably worth following up on this review, particularly as RMIT is currently taking on the
matter of implementing generic graduate capabilities 6.

Another area of interest in the QUT’s assessment policy is that there are a number of subsections (9.1.8 and 9.1.10) that are dedicated to
alternative modes of assessment: self and peer ; as well as policy guidance on assessing group work. Furthermore, the issue of
management of assessment in large classes is also raised (s 9.1.10). While the text in the policy is limited, the presence of these diverse
ways of thinking about assessment and their place in learning is a significant achievement, particularly as this policy document was
approved in 2003.




5
    Generic Capabilities of ATN University Graduates http://www.clt.uts.edu.au/ATN.grad.cap.project.index.html
6
    See the RMIT Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010 at: http://www.rmit.edu.au/teaching/ltstrategy
                                                Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                        Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                  137
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                           Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.3: University of South Australia’s (UniSA) Asssessment Policy
                                                                                                           Assessment Policy Details                                                Description                                                            Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                                       2008 Assessment Manual:                 A manual of assessment policies and procedures for staff and students. It contains 58      Extract from 2008 Assessment Manual:
                                                                                                                                               pages and with 11 key sections plus ‘Significant amendments in this edition’ and
                                                                                                       Consolidated Policies and               ‘General Definitions’ being the remaining sections of the manual.
                                                                                                       Procedures                                                                                                                         Principles of student assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Validity and reliability
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Every effort will be made to ensure that assessment methods are valid and
                                                                                                                                               Key sections of the 2008 Manual are:                                                       reliable, recognising that human judgement is a significant element in indicators
                                                                                                       Download PDF Assessment Policies        1. Assessment Principles and Requirements                                                  of achievement. Moderation (including external moderation where appropriate) of
                                                                                                       and Procedures Manual at:                   1.1Principles of student assessment                                                    both the setting of assessment tasks and of marking will be established to improve
                                                                                                       http://www.unisa.edu.au/policies/man        1.2Requirements for undergraduate courses                                              the validity and reliability of assessment processes.
                                                                                                       ual/2008/2008_APPM.pdf                      1.3Feedback to students
                                                                                                                                                   1.4Examinations as an assessment technique                                             Formative and summative purposes
                                                                                                       Status: Approved                            1.5Collection and return of assignments and results                                    Assessment will be used for both formative and summative purposes. In its
                                                                                                                                               2. Course Information Booklets                                                             formative role it will help students and staff to indentify strengths, weaknesses,
                                                                                                       Revised annually and distributed in     3. Moderation and Variation                                                                and ways to improve. In its summative form it will provide information to judge
                                                                                                       hardcopy at the beginning of the               3.1 Moderation of assessment                                                        the extent to which aspects of Graduate Qualities are achieved within a course or
                                                                                                       academic year and published on the             3.2 Variations to assessment tasks                                                  program.
                                                                                                       University website.                            3.3 Extension to assessment task deadlines
                                                                                                                                                      3.4 Variations to examinations                                                      Student feedback
                                                                                                       This 2008 edition applies to all        4. Practicum, Field and Clinical Placements                                                A key element of the University’s approach to student engeagement is that
                                                                                                       assessment undertaken in the 2008              4.1 Administrative arrangements and assessment requirements                         students actively contribute to their own learning and exercise a degree of
                                                                                                       calendar year. Assessment undertaken           4.2 Medical fitness and /or suitability for placement: Legislative reporting        responsibility for managing their own learning program. This requires that they
                                                                                                       in an earlier year is governed by the          requirements for a program of study leading to registration as a health             be provided with feedback that is in time for them to benefit in preparing for
                                                                                                       manual for that year.                          professional                                                                        future tasks, and is constructive so that they can make sensible judgements about
                                                                                                                                                      4.3 Medical fitness and/or suitability for placement                                modifying aspects of their academic performance in order to meet more
                                                                                                       Approval Authority: Academic Board             4.4 Recording information about suitability for placement                           comprehensively the objectives of a course. Feedback will therefore enable
                                                                                                                                                      4.5 Suitability Advisory Panel                                                      studwents to understand both their level of development of the required skills and
                                                                                                       Contact for Staff: Senior Policy               4.6 Terms of Reference of the Suitability Advisory Panel                            understandings embedded in the assessment activity and how their performance
                                                                                                       Officer, Student and Academic                  4.7 Duties of the Chair                                                             could be improved in subsequent activity.
                                                                                                       Services                                       4.8 Conflict of Interest
                                                                                                                                                      4.9 Schedule                                                                        Program outcomes and course assessment
                                                                                                                                                      4.10 Accommodating students with disabilities in a practicum, field or              Assessment setting will be a collaborative activity across each programs. The
                                                                                                                                                      clinical placement                                                                  assessment of students across the courses within their program will be
                                                                                                                                                      4.11 Unsatisfactory performance in a placement                                      coordinated to:
                                                                                                                                                      4.12 Misconduct in a placement                                                            a) ensure consistency in the University’s expectation of workload across
                                                                                                                                               5. Re-marking and Re-submission                                                                       courses;
                         Teaching and Learning; http://www.unisa.edu.au/teachinglearning/default.asp




                                                                                                                                                      5.1 Re-marking                                                                            b) spread assessment load and intensity across the study period; and
                                                                                                                                                      5.2 Re-submission                                                                         c) measure the extent to which the program’s Graduate Qualities are
                                                                                                                                               6. Examination Procedures                                                                             achieved.
                                                                                                                                                      6.1 General procedures
                                                                                                                                                      6.2 Procedures during the examination                                               Assessment and teaching and learning approaches
                                                                                                                                                      6.3 Procedures for leaving the examination room                                     Assessment practices will be sufficiently diverse so as not to restrict academic
                                                                                                                                                      6.4 Breaches of examination procedures
of South Austrralia




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          staff to a single teaching and learning approach. They will promote student as
                                                                                                                                                      6.5 Procedures for breaches that cause disruption to an examination                 described in the University’s Teaching and Learning Framework and student-
                                                                                                                                                      6.6 Procedures for breaches that do not cause disruption to an examination          centred learning as described in the Unviersity’s Code of Good Practice:
                                                                                                                                                      6.7 Arrangements for students studying a course externally                          University Teaching, consistent with the collaborative and independent learning
                                                                                                                                                      6.8 Off-campus examination arrangements for students studying a course              approach underpinning the Code.
                                                                                                                                                      internally
                                                                                                                                               7. Secondary Assessments                                                                   Communication of assessment requirements to students
                                                                                                                                                      7.1 Secondary assessment                                                            The expectations of the assessment task, its relationship to the program Graduate
                                                                                                                                                      7.2 Supplementary assessment (on academic grounds)                                  Qualities, and the criteria and standards by which performance is to be judged,
                                                                                                                                                      7.3 Unexpected and exceptional grounds                                              will be made clear to students form the outset in the course information booklet.
                                                                                                                                                      7.4 Deferred assessment                                                             Students will also be made aware of assessment requirements such as length,
                                                                                                                                                      7.5 Special consideration                                                           weighting, submission dates, provisions for extension and re-submission, form of
University: University




                                                                                                                                               8. Final Grades and Notations                                                              presentation and the extent to which these (and the assessment task itself) are
                                                                                                                                                      8.1 Determination and approval of results                                           negotiable between academic staff and students.
                                                                                                                                                      8.2 Interim notations
                                                                                                                                                      8.3 Conceded and terminating passes                                                 Assessment and student engagement
                                                                                                                                                      8.4 Use of non-graded pass and fail (NGD/ F)                                        Assessment plays a central role in shaping student learning and will provide
                                                                                                                                                      8.5 Final grades and notations                                                      students with the stimulus to learn in depth, to apply their developing skills and
                                                                                                                                                      8.6 Calculation of the grade point average                                          knowledge in new situations and challenge and change their ways of thinking and
                                                                                                                                                      8.7 Student appeals against final grades                                            doing. Assessment will be undertaken by a range of people involved in the
                                                                                                                                               9. Academic Integrity                                                                      teaching and learning process including the staff member responsible for the
                                                                                                                                                      9.1 Academic integrity                                                              course, other members of the teaching team, groups of students who exercise
                                                                                                                                                      9.2 Academic misconduct                                                             some judgement about the contribution of one or more of their colleagues, and by
                                                                                                                                                      9.3 Use of text comparison software                                                 the individual students who judges his or her progress and performance against
                                                                                                                                                      9.4 Academic Integrity Officers                                                     explicit criteria. Where possible, students will participate in the assessment
                                                                                                                                                      9.5 Initial inquiry into alleged academic misconduct                                process through such means as:
                                                                                                                                                      9.6 Formal inquiry                                                                        a) discussion of how the assessment methods related to the program
                                                                                                                                                      9.7 Additional outcomes available following a formal inquiry                                     goals;
                                                                                                                                                      9.8 Appeals against outcomes of a formal inquiry                                          b) self and peer assessment activities
                                                                                                                                                      9.9 Recording information about academic misconduct                                       c) making responsible choices among different methods; and
                                                                                                                                               10. Academic Review                                                                              d) providing feedback as part of course evaluation processes leading to
                                                                                                                                                    Monitoring unsatisfactory progress                                                                 future improvements.
                                                                                                                                                    Procedures for the mid-year review of academic progress
                                                                                                                                                    Procedures for the end-of-year review of academic progress                            Inclusive assessment practice
                                                                                                                                                    Procedures for preclusion or individual monitoring                                    Assessment practices will be inclusive and support equity principles. They will
                                                                                                                                                    Appealing against preclusion                                                          cater for both individual and group diversity. It will be recognised that all
                                                                                                                                               11. Student Appeals Committee                                                              assessment models have limitations and a capacity to disadvantage by, for
                                                                                                                                                      11.1 Grounds for appeal                                                             example, using a variety of assessment techniques. Inclusive language will be
                                                                                                                                                      11.2 Lodging an appeal                                                              used to avoid gender, racial, cultural or other language bias.
                                                                                                                                                      11.3 Committee membership
                                                                                                                                                      11.4 Committee procedures                                                           Feedback to students
                                                                                                                                                      11.5 Notification of decisions                                                      Feedback is one of the most important aspects of the learning process and serves
                                                                                                                                                      11.6 Further avenues of appeal                                                      the critical function of enabling students to make timely and informed judgements
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          about their performance so that subsequent assessment can be undertaken with
                                                                                                                                               Related links to policy                                                                    improved likelihood of success. Feedback is provide in a variety of ways,
                                                                                                                                               Code of Good Practice: University teaching                                                 including answers to questions, comments from teaching staff, both individually
                                                                                                                                               http://www.unisa.edu.au/policies/codes/goodprac/univ.asp                                   and to the whole class, emails and online discussion comments, both individually
                                                                                                                                               First approved by Academic Board in 1993, this document ‘articulates the consensus         and to the whole class, oral comments on presentations and participation in class
                                                                                                                                               that exists currently within the University about the characteristics of good teaching.’   discussions, preliminary assignment advice, face-to-face assignment discussion,
                                                                                                                                               (p. 2) This document provides details of the overarching teaching philosophy that          individually, and in groups, and written feedback comments on drafts and
                                                                                                                                               underpins UniSA policy and practice. Consequently it provides contextual                   assignments.
                                                                                                                                               background and it is useful to read this ten page document with the Assessment
                                                                                                                                               Manual.                                                                                    Further procedural advice is given e.g. appropriate periods for feedback to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          students; approaches of teaching teams towards feedback etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Examinations as an assessment technique
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Course coordinators must provide an appropriate educational rationale for
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          adopting examinations as a form of assessment. The principles of student
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          assessment are applied to all forms of examinations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Collection and return of assignments and results
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A series of policy and procedures are outlined under this principle about the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          duties and responsibilities of staff and students regarding submitting and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          returning assessment work.


 PMI Analysis
                                                                                                                                                       Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                          138
                                                                                                                              APPENDIX D
                                                                           Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

Plus
The UniSA’s Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual 2008 is a comprehensive document that is refreshed each year since its
inception in 2004. All editions of the manual are able to be accessed online. The established history of the annual review of the manual
has also supported the evolution of a “Significant amendments in this edition” section that is located at the front end of the policy
document. This is a useful and strategic addition for staff (and students) to signal any changes from the previous year’s policies and
procedures.

Another positive aspect of the Manual is the identification of related resources for students and staff that are linked throughout the
manual e.g. fact sheets, frequently asked questions, forms and guidelines. This ensures that the manual is not only a reflection of policy
but also anticipates user needs that are critical to policy implementation. There is also an explicit effort for the 2008 Assessment Manual
to speak directly to both students and staff of the University e.g. use of subheadings such as “Communication to students”, “Further
information for staff” and “Further information for students”.

The use of the capability of the online environment for cross-referencing relevant material and a glossary of definitions, along with
linking to related resources is a good use of the online environment that enhances user options on how to navigate and read the policy
manual. It draws successfully on the online environment for multilayering the resources available to the user.

Minus
The Manual is entitled ‘Policy and Procedures’ yet it is difficult to discern policy from procedure. This is probably the case with other
manuals too but it seems more evident in this manual. Whether this difference is necessary at the user level is something that may require
discussion i.e. what are the implications for practice if policy and procedure are meld together?

Another issue is the misuse of the online environment for cross-referencing e.g. the continual linking of ‘assessment’ throughout the
policy document to its definition (from the glossary). This becomes tedious for the user, particularly as the term ‘assessment’ is used so
frequently within the document (e.g. eight times on the ‘Assessment Principles and Requirements’, p.1).

Interesting
A significant section of the UniSA’s Assessment Manual is dedicated to the policy and procedure related to the “Practicum, Field and
Clinical Placements” (section 4, pp. 12-18). This reflects a well-thought out institutional approach to supporting and implementing
placements as part of a program of learning. It addresses legislative obligations in relation to placements as well as professional or
industry requirements for placements as part of learning program. As RMIT is currently in transition in implementing its Work Integrated
Learning (WIL) Policy and Procedures, this might a useful model for a more detailed exploration to determine if the prospective RMIT’s
Assessment Manual should consider a section committed to placements and assessment.

It is also worth noting that under the ‘Assessment Principles and Requirements’ (section 1 of the Manual) a number of
operational/procedural details are described. The focus seems to take the perspective of inclusivity as an equity principle of assessment
that is planned within appropriate time periods and reflects diversity. To illustrate for example, the details set parameters for types of
assessment (including formative and summative) and expectations to deliver across the teaching period; coordination of assessment
across a program of study and the responsibilities for monitoring this practice; issues of appropriate workload for students etc. This has
some similarities with the intentions of the SET Portfolio Assessment Guidelines and may be of interest to explore further in relation to
this synergy.

The Manual also provides a rationale for why a course coordinator or program manager may opt for examinations (see principle:
Examinations as an assessment technique) and this rationale shifts profoundly organisational thinking about the role of examinations in
assessment and learning. The principle as defined by UniSA is that the examination is no longer a priviliged tool above other assessment
strategies; rather that it should be used appropriately and not a ‘given’ or ‘default’ option. It appears this conceptualisation of the
examination as an assessment tool was initially flagged in the 2005 edition of the manual and has continued to be refined. There is also
an acknowledgement that at times there may be professional association requirements that may require formative summative
examinations that are weighted greater than 70% for any particular course (subject). In such cases, the relevant school/s ‘must seek a
formal exemption from the division’ for such practice. Furthermore, ‘feedback to students’ is also addressed within the section one of the
Manual, providing details of how such practice might be achieved.

One aspect of the RMIT Assessment Standards Project is to open the discussion about possible policy, mechanisms and practice that
RMIT may engage with to address issues of assessment standards both within the institution and as possibilities for benchmarking
standards with ATN members and/ or other institutions. The UniSA Assessment Manual has a chapter on Moderation and Variation,
which may provide initial ideas for our discussions at RMIT on this matter.




                                           Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                   Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                             139
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                              Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.4: University of Technology Sydney’s (UTS) Asssessment Policy
                                                                                              Assessment Policy Details                                                Description                                                    Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                           Coursework Assessment                  A manual of assessment policy and procedures primarily targeted to staff. It has 9 key   Good Academic Practice
                                                                                                                                  sections plus appendices, which are:                                                     Students come to university for a variety of reasons including to gain a specific
                                                                                           Policy and Procedures                   1. Background                                                                           qualification, to pursue their interest in a particular field and to broaden their
                                                                                           Manual                                       Good Academic Practice                                                             education. Good academic practice demands personal integrity and respect for
                                                                                                                                        Philosophy                                                                         scholarship. For example, academic staff are responsible for marking
                                                                                                                                        Principles                                                                         assessment fairly and consistently, and providing feedback within a reasonable
                                                                                           Download PDF Manual at:                 2. Roles and Responsibilities                                                           timeframe, and students are responsible for submitting work that represents their
                                                                                           http://www.uts.edu.au/teachlearn/pol         Students                                                                           own efforts to meet the stated requirements.
                                                                                           icies.html                                   Lecturers
                                                                                                                                        Markers                                                                            Student learning will be more effective and enjoyable if basic principles of good
                                                                                           Status: Approved                             Subject Coordinators                                                               academic practices are followed. These include the following:
                                                                                                                                        Assessors                                                                          -Academic integrity
                                                                                           Approved: 1 Aug 2007                         Responsible Academic Officers (RAO)                                                -Self-motivation and commitment to learning
                                                                                                                                        Deans                                                                              -Awareness of requirements
                                                                                           Approval Authority: Academic                 Results Ratification Committee                                                     -Participation
                                                                                           Board                                        Academic Liaison Officers (ALO)                                                    -Respecting rights of others
                                                                                                                                        English Language Study Skills Assistance (ELSSA) Centre                            -Seeking timely help from appropriate sources.
                                                                                           Contact: Director, Student                   Student Ombud
                                                                                           Administration Unit                          Student Administration Unit (SAU)                                                  Philosophy
                   Teaching and Learning; http://www.uts.edu.au/teachlearn/overview.html




                                                                                                                                   3. Preparation for the Assessment Process                                               Assessment is an integral part of the learning process. Through assessment,
                                                                                                                                        Assessment Patterns                                                                judgements can be made about the quality and extent of students’ achievements
                                                                                                                                        Subject Outlines                                                                   and performances. The forms of assessment used throughout UTS are diverse
                                                                                                                                        Assessment Items/ Types of Assessment                                              and vary according to academic discipline. The methods of assessment should
of Technology, Sydney




                                                                                                                                   4. Completing tasks                                                                     demonstrate an appropriateness to a subject’s learning outcomes and graduate
                                                                                                                                        Group Work and Assessment (Collaborative Assessment)                               attributes. Assessment plays an important educative role in conveying to
                                                                                                                                        Submission and Collection of Assessment Items                                      students the kind of intellectual engagement desired and provides feedback on
                                                                                                                                        Academic Misconduct                                                                learning. Assessment enables students to meet minimum academic and
                                                                                                                                        Cheating and Plagiarism                                                            professional requirements and allows UTS to meet its responsibilities to the
                                                                                                                                        Student Misconduct Procedures                                                      community. Students need confidence in the continuing standing of their
                                                                                                                                        Students with Difficulty Meeting Assesment Requirements                            courses and the rigorous environment in which learning occurs.
                                                                                                                                        The Centrally Conducted Exams Process
                                                                                                                                        Conduct of Examinations                                                            Assessment in UTS is based on the general principle of criterion-based
                                                                                                                                        Conduct of Supplementary Examinations (T result)                                   assessment that means students’ work is assessed against stated criteria that
                                                                                                                                        Students Unable to Attend an Examination                                           reflect the objectives of the subject. Grades are based on a student’s level of
                                                                                                                                        Students Who Leave An Examination Early Due To Illness/ Misadventure               performance in achieving stated objectives (criterion-referenced assessment),
                                                                                                                                        Students Whose Examination Performance Is Affected By Illness/ Misadventure        not on the number of other students who achieve a particular grade (norm-
University: University




                                                                                                                                   5. Marking                                                                              referenced assessment).
                                                                                                                                        Marking
                                                                                                                                        Borderline Results                                                                 Principles
                                                                                                                                        Conflict of Interest                                                               These general principles have been followed in the development of this
                                                                                                                                        Feedback                                                                           assessment policy and procedure manual:
                                                                                                                                   6. Recording Results                                                                    i) Staff should ensure modes of assessment are specifically linked to the
                                                                                                                                        Table of Results and Grades                                                        educational objectives of a subject and course.
                                                                                                                                        Assessment Grades and Results – Role of Subject Coordinators and Responsible       ii) Assessment should be an aid to successful learning and encourage students to
                                                                                                                                  Academic Officers                                                                        apply their knowledge and skills in an analytical and critical manner.
                                                                                                                                        Recording Results                                                                  iii) Assessment requirements should be clearly stated.
                                                                                                                                        Interim Notations – Results Not Finalised                                          iv) Students should receive feedback on their work in a timely manner that
                                                                                                                                        Changes to Final Grades                                                            assists them to understand the learning objectives achieved and how they can
                                                                                                                                        Determination of Late Variation to Student Enrolment                               improve the quality of their work.
                                                                                                                                        Release of Final Results                                                           v) Assessment should be fair and equitable for all students.
                                                                                                                                        Records                                                                            vi) Students and staff should be aware of assessment policy and procedures, and
                                                                                                                                   7. Concerns with Results                                                                policies related to academic misconduct and appeals.
                                                                                                                                        Remarking and Resubmission                                                         vii) Assessment should enable UTS to certify that the grade awarded
                                                                                                                                        Seeking Help                                                                       corresponds to the student’s performance and that the student has met subject
                                                                                                                                   8. Review of Final Subject Assessment Results                                           and course requirements in an approved manner.
                                                                                                                                        Criteria                                                                           viii) Assessment should involve reasonable workloads for both staff and
                                                                                                                                        Stages                                                                             students commensurate with the credit points allocated to a subject.
                                                                                                                                        Committee Procedures                                                               ix) UTS regards assessment as a confidential matter. No person involved in the
                                                                                                                                        Decision of Responsible Academic Officer (RAO)                                     process should divulge to any unauthorised person any information related to an
                                                                                                                                   9. Special Issues                                                                       individual student’s assessment or grades.
                                                                                                                                        Learning and Assessment Arrangements for Students who have Permanent or
                                                                                                                                  Temporary Disabilities
                                                                                                                                        Students with Continuing Disabilities
                                                                                                                                        Temporary Disability
                                                                                                                                        Students Who Have Carers’ Responsibilities
                                                                                                                                        Students with English Language Difficulties
                                                                                                                                   Appendices
                                                                                                                                   Index




 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 Like other ATN members, UTS has its assessment related policies and procedures located in one e-document on their website:
 Coursework Assessment Policy and Procedures Manual. At sixty-one pages, it is a relatively comprehensive policy document available
 online. “Good Academic Practice” is outlined in the preamble to the assessment philosophy and principles, which acknowledges that
 student motivation towards university study is varied as well as contextualises assessment as an integral part of learning.

 Minus
 The assessment manual is a little difficult to find but once the “Teaching and learning policies” homepage 7 is located the hotlinks to the
 assessment manual is easily identified.

 There is a brief section on ‘Group work and assessment (collaborative assessment)’ in section four of the manual. As universities show
 increasing interest in collaborative learning and asessment, and the increasing pressure from employers demanding graduates with the
 capacity to work collaboratively, this section raises the hopes about how an institution might manage and encourage the development of
 this type of learning and assessment. Unfortunately, the UTS policy and procedure in this area is limited as it portrays the limitations of
 collaborative learning, and particularly, its impact on assessment. However, in offering a category within the manual on this topic raises
 the challenge and opportunity for RMIT to consider how it might address this area with innovative policy and practice to meet the needs
 of graduates with a global passport outlook.

 Interesting
 The sections on ‘marking’ (section 5) and ‘recording results’ (section 6) might provide further ideas to tackle the issues associated with
 assessment standards at RMIT. The ‘marking’ section is not as formalised as in the UniSA Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual;


 7
          http://www.uts.edu.au/teachlearn/policies.html
                                                                                                                                           Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                         140
                                                                                                                                    APPENDIX D
                                                                                 Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

rather they are more like guiding principles for practice, specifying the role that subject (course) coordinators play in setting and
maintaining assessment standards.

Other areas of interest to RMIT, which reside not in the UTS assessment manual, but within the “Teaching and learning policies”
homepage, include:
   • UTS Fieldwork Guidelines 8 – link to implementation of RMIT WIL policy and procedures
   • Graduate Profile Framework 9 – links to implementation of RMIT’s generic attributes.




8
    http://www.gsu.uts.edu.au/policies/fieldworkguidelines.html
9
    http://www.uts.edu.au/work/coursedevelopment/links/documents/graduateprofile.pdf

                                                 Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                         Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                   141
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                      Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.5: Macquarie University’s Assessment Policy
                                                                                                     Assessment Policy Details                                 Description                                                            Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                                  The assessment policy is                A thirteen page draft assessment policy with 25 areas      Philosophy
                                                                                                                                          of policy statement in addition to i) Philosophy and ii)   Assessment of student learning performance and feedback on their progress are pivotal and ‘high stakes’
                                                                                                  currently under review.
                                                                                                                                          Principles of good practice sections. It is addressed to   processes in university learning and teaching. Assessment communicates to students what must be learned and
                                                                                                                                          all academic and teaching staff as well as all students    are vehicles by which the University assures itself and society of its graduates’ capabilities.
                                                                                                  Download PDF the DRAFT
                                                                                                                                          across the university, as well as provide stakeholders
                                                                                                  Assessment policy at:
                                                                                                                                          (eg professional accrediting bodies, employers of          This assessment policy supports assessment and feedback practices that implement the core values and
                                                                                                  http://www.els.mq.edu.au/teach_learn/
                                                                                                                                          graduates) information on assessment issues.               principles espoused in Macquarie University’s Mission and Learning and Teaching Plan. The intention is to
                                                                                                  Assessment%20Policy%20V10%20_
                                                                                                  Draft.pdf                                                                                          ensure that the design of assessment tasks, feedback processes and grading strategies are efficient, effective and
                                                                                                                                          The 25 policy statements include:                          ethical, as well as imbued with educational integrity and equity and grounded in research based evidence
                                                                                                                                           1. Requirements for Completion of a Unit                  regarding effective practice.
                                                                                                  Date approved: Draft March 10 (2008)
                                                                                                                                           2. Satisfactory Completion of a Unit
                                                                                                                                           3. Examinations (see Examinations Policy)                 Importantly this policy is based on the premise that all assessment practice must be aligned with curriculum
                                                                                                                                           4. Advice to Students                                     intentions, and measured against externally validated standards and not merely directed at arriving at a grade.
                                                                                                  Contact: Dr Marina Harvey
                                                                                                                                           5. Assessment Design                                      Equally, this policy is based on the premise that it is important that students are to be guided by assessment to
                                                                                                                                           6. Graduate Capabilities                                  engage in their education, rather than merely pursue grades. Student engagement is best facilitated by learner
                                                                                                                                           7. Teaching Research Nexus                                managed learning in which students are active partners in the process through undertaking challenging
                                                                                                                                           8. Workplace/ Clinical Assessment                         responsibilities and making choices.
                                                                                                                                           9. On-line Assessment
                                                                                                                                           10. Formative Assessment                                  Principles of Good Practice
                  Learning and Teaching Centre; http://www.mq.edu.au/learningandteachingcentre/




                                                                                                                                           11. Frames of Reference                                   The principles that underpin this policy are derived from evidence-based assumptions, namely, htat high
                                                                                                                                           12. Judgements of Student Learning Outcomes               quality assessment processes and practices:
                                                                                                                                           13. Academic Integrity
                                                                                                                                           14. Inclusive Practice                                       Ensure that students’ and teachers’ effort and workloads possess a pivotal role in focusing learning and
                                                                                                                                           15. Approval of Assessment Requirements                      teaching efforts on intended learning outcomes, not ritualised assessment routines to produce or achieve
                                                                                                                                           16. Changes to Assessment Requirements                       grades.
                                                                                                                                           17. Disposal of Assessment Material
                                                                                                                                           18. Responsibility for Assessment Items                      Promote active student engagement in learning which is characterised by:
                                                                                                                                           19. Extension of Time to Complete Assessment                    •   Motivation and enthusiasm for learning
                                                                                                                                               Tasks                                                       •   Increasing mastery, competence and academic independence
University




                                                                                                                                           20. Resubmission
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •   Student inquiry and research-based learning
                                                                                                                                           21. Special Consideration
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •   Disposition towards life long learning
                                                                                                                                           22. Quality Assurance and Management of
                                                                                                                                               Assessment                                                  •   Utilisation of feedback to improve performance
                                                                                                                                           23. Procedures for Assessment Literacy                          •   Connectedness to real world issues
                                                                                                                                           24. Moderation of assessment methods                            •   Engendering and development of graduate capabilities
University: Macquarie




                                                                                                                                           25. Moderation of results
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Recognise and value student diversity, including the indigenous and international character of the student
                                                                                                                                                                                                        body and promote and support internationalisation and the international experience of learning to achieve
                                                                                                                                                                                                        personal, social and cultural development by students, teachers, and the University community.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Demonstrate a scholarly approach by both students and staff characterised by:
                                                                                                                                                                                                          •   Inquiry and scholarship
                                                                                                                                                                                                          •   Critical thinking and analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                                          •   Self and peer review’
                                                                                                                                                                                                          •   Intellectual academic integrity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Embody high quality, timely feedback as an essential element that mist have value for students in improving
                                                                                                                                                                                                        their learning performance and developing their capacity to self assess.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Meet expectations and standards of national and international stakeholders;

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Exemplify ethical practice, honesty, integrity, objectivity, equity, social justice, tolerance and inclusiveness,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        thus providing an opportunity for success for all students;

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Produce grades and reports of student learning achievements that are valid, reliable and accurate
                                                                                                                                                                                                        representations of each student’s capabilities in relation to clearly articulated learning objectives and result
                                                                                                                                                                                                        from processes that are consistent, fair and equitable;

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Are the focus of quality assurance and quality enhancement management processes to promote socially just
                                                                                                                                                                                                        student learning achievement that meets national and international standards and expectations

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Require involvement of leaders and managers to achieve quality enhancement and continuous improvement
                                                                                                                                                                                                        as evidenced through:
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Transparent, consistent, efficient and effective processes;
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Provision of opportunities to enhance assessment literacy of all stakeholders, at all levels of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                responsibility, so that they are well informed of their rights and responsibilities and have reasonable
                                                                                                                                                                                                                expectations regarding assessment process outcomes;
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Accountability and responsibility among staff and students guided by a Code of Ethical Assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Practice;
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Moderation and peer review processes that have dual focus, namely: i) assessment design and ii)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                grading outputs, and
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Regular and multi-level review cycles that inform institutional QA, QE processes
                                                                                                                                                                                                           •     Embedded quality processes to ensure adherence to institutional policy frameworks, and attention to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                issues related to academic integrity; access, equity, records management, intellectual property.




 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 Macquarie University is currently undergoing significant cultural change with new executive team managing new policy and institutional
 strategic directions. Part of this process is to generate a whole-of-institution approach to policy including learning and teaching related
 policies. An output of this strategic focus is the development of a new draft assessment policy. Like many other Higher Education
 institutions, this draft assessment policy is bringing related policy statements together in the ‘one’ area. The details are not as
 comprehensive as other institutions that have established the assessment manual concept; yet it provides a broad framework for building
 up the detail as the document evolves.

 Minus
 Much of the content in the new policy document is relatively operational i.e. the processes are being articulated. This is likely to be a
 reflection of the institutional context that is managing significant cultural change to make policy and processes more transparent and
 carried out with greater consistency between the different areas of the institution.

 Interesting
 An interesting practice that has emerged in the draft Assessment Policy is the way that the policy is introduced and contextualised. It is
 presented as part of a framework that will support its implementation. Particularly, it emphasises that the
 “policy is accompanied by:
     1. Principles of good practice.
     2. A Code of Practice that comprises a set of explicit statements regarding the rights and responsibilities of students, academic staff
        and the institution in relation to ethical (assessment) practice.
                                                                                                                                                  Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                    142
                                                                                                                              APPENDIX D
                                                                           Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

    3. A change and enhancement process that includes:
          a. Agreement, shared understanding and commitment related to the values;
          b. Induction and support for staff that is educative;
          c. Systems of recognition and reward for staff and academic organisational units who engage with the change and
               enhancement process.
    4. Short term and long term targets for strategic change.
    5. Procedures and guidelines for assessment design, communication, feedback and reporting.
    6. QA/ QE and moderation processes.” Overview, Page 1 of the draft policy.


This approach to development of policy and its implementation recognises the critical nature of the demands of cultural shifts and
addressing change in institutions. It is attempting to address policy development within the institutional context and its practices rather
than in isolation. In this respect, it has similarities with the RMIT Assessment Standards Project and we might be able to learn from
Macquarie’s experiences.




                                           Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                   Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                             143
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                            Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.6: Deakin University’s Assessment Policy
                                                                                                   Assessment Policy Details                                              Description                                            Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                    The Deakin Guide provides information on university               Policies, Procedures and Rules related to
                                                                                    policies, procedures and rules as well as its committees,         assessment in HE:                                    There seems to be no specific ‘philosophy’ articulated; however the “Assessment (Higher
                                                                                    plans, guidelines and other related information and forms.                                                             Education) – Operational Policy” has an introductory section under the title of ‘Policy’,
                                                                                    The url is:                                                       - Assessment and Academic Progress Enabling Policy   which seems to carry themes that may be considered as an overarching philosophy mixed
                                                                                    http://theguide.deakin.edu.au                                     - Academic Progress operational policy               with operational parameters (for HE) where it states:
                                                                                                                                                      - Anonymous Marking in Examinations policy           - Any unit offered by a Deakin entity must be sponsored by a faculty.
                                                                                    There is no consolidated and separate manual of assessment        - Advanced Standing (Credit Transfer) operational    - Assessment practices and procedures at Deakin University will ensure quality control,
                                                                                    related policies. Therefore a search of assessment in The         policy                                               consistency and equity in assessment.
                                                                                    Deakin Guide (under visitor access) revealed the following        - Academic Progress operational policy               - The primary focus of assessment shall be to encourage, direct and reinforce learning.
                                                                                    assessment policy, procedure and operational plan.                - Plagiarism and Collusion operational policy        Assessment should be designed to assist students in their learning. Assessment should also
                                                                                                                                                      - Offshore Teaching Partnership Staff operational    be capable of indicating achievement, maintaining standards, providing certification and be
                                                                                    The Deakin Guide has assessment policies and procedures for       policy                                               as transparent as possible.
                                                                                    both Higher Education and VET sectors. These have been                                                                 - Assessment tasks devised for a course or unit shall reflect in scope and depth the stated
                                                                                    designed as separate documents specific to the sector.            - Assessment (Higher Education) procedure            objectives for that course or unit. The assessment methods used must be shown to achieve
                                                                                                                                                      - Comparability of Assessment procedure              consistent and fair results. Units of equal value in their contribution to a degree or other
                                                                                    Examples of VET policy and procedure:                             - Anonymous Marking in Examinations procedure        award should make comparable summative assessment demands on students.
                                                                                    - Learning and Assessment (VET) – Operational Policy              - Advanced Standing procedure                        - Faculty boards shall determine the means of assessment for each unit offered by the
                                                                                                                                                      - Plagiarism and Collusion procedure                 faculty. Faculties, schools and individual assessment panels (see Regulation 5.5(1)
                Institute of Teaching and Learning; http://www.deakin.edu.au/itl/




                                                                                    - Learning and Assessment Strategy (VET) – Procedure
                                                                                    - Asssessment (VET) – Operational Policy.                         Offshore Teaching Partnership Staff procedure        Assessment and Academic Progress) may develop assessment practices that are derived
                                                                                                                                                                                                           from and consistent with this policy and set of principles and University procedures.
                                                                                    For the purposes of the TQI Project, the data presented here is                                                        - In certain circumstances students may be eligible for special consideration, special
                                                                                    related to Higher Education sector.                               Rules:                                               assessment or supplementary assessment.
                                                                                                                                                      - Assessment (HE) Administration Schedule            - Consistent with its responsibilities to Council for the maintenance and monitoring of
                                                                                    Legislation: The Deakin University Act 1974                       - Faculty (eg Arts; Business and Law) multiple and   academic standards, the Academic Board shall monitor compliance with this policy in the
                                                                                    Statute 05.05 – Assessment and Academic Progress;                 specific assessment rules                            manner specified in the accompanying procedures.
University




                                                                                    Regulation 05.05(1) – Assessment and Academic Progress –
                                                                                    Higher Education Awards Other Than Higher Degrees by              Assessment (HE) procedure – a key document           Principles of assessment*
                                                                                    Research                                                          governing assessment practice that contains:         In carrying out this procedure, staff will ensure that the following principles are observed:
                                                                                                                                                      - principles of assessment                             • The University recognises the importance of both the summative and formative
                                                                                    The Regulation consists of 4 parts: Assessment; Special           - setting assessment and informing students                functions of its assessment regimes and the need to make a clear distinction between
University: Deakin




                                                                                    Consideration in Assessment; Academic Progress; Appeals.          - receiving assessment work                                them. Care shall be taken that the need to grade students does not conflict with the
                                                                                                                                                      - feedback on assignments                                  important educative role that assessment can perform in both conveying to students
                                                                                                                                                      - reviewing results and ensuring comparability             the kinds of intellectual engagement desired and in providing feedback on their
                                                                                    Status: Approved by Council on 24 October 2002 and                - special consideration and special assessment             performance. The role to be performed by individual assessment tasks shall be made
                                                                                    incorporating all amendments to 12 October 2006.                  - supplementary assessment                                 clear to students from the outset.
                                                                                                                                                      - review of result                                     • It is expected that staff responsible for course and unit development demonstrate
                                                                                                                                                      - examinations                                             professional expertise in devising modes of assessment which accurately reflect the
                                                                                    Overall Governance: Council approves Statute/ Regulation/         - results                                                  relevant educational objectives, which suit the particular assessment goal and which
                                                                                    Enabling Policy; Academic Board approves Operational              - quality assurance.                                       are inn tune with the style of presentation adopted for the subject matter.
                                                                                    Policy/ Procedure/ Rules                                          This is a brief/concise document considering the       • Students should be advised of all requirements for assessment at the beginning of each
                                                                                                                                                      topics it covers (5 pages).                                semester.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • The quantity of assessment that contributes towards a final result should be the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 minimum amount necessary to ensure a valid result. Ideally, there should be more than
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 one assessment task for each unit and these should occur across the semester rather
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 than being concentrated at the end.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • When setting assessments, teaching staff should be mindful of students’ total
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 workloads within the particular time frame.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • Where an assessment panel wishes to include an assessment hurdle requirement (for
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 example, a requirement that students must obtain a passing grade in an individual
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 assessment task in order to obtain a passing grade overall) that requirement should be
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 demonstrably related to acquiring knowledge or skills necessary to attain an
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 appropriate level of competency in the unit, or meeting professional or other
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 accreditation requirements.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • Each piece of assessment should be accompanied by clear assessment criteria, which
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 are effectively communicated to students and assessors.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • Each individual assessment task need not test all goals for the unit; rather the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 fulfilment of all goals should be assessed over the total assessment experience.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             • In awarding numerical marks for an assessment task, assessment panels should only
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 use gradations of marks between 0 and 100% appropriate to distinguish differences
                                                                                                                                                                                                                 between student performances of that task.

                                                                                                                                                                                                           * taken from: Assessment (HE) procedure



 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 Deakin have a whole procedure dedicated to “Comparability of Assessment – Procedure” (Approved by Academic Board on 21 April
 2005). This procedure outlines detailed processes for ‘preparing for assessment’ and ‘methods for ensuring comparability of assessment’.
 These might be a useful reference point to consider in any work we may undertake in thinking about conceptualising the practice of
 assessment standards.

 Minus
 Like the current practice at RMIT, there is no consolidated and separate manual of assessment related policies. The presence of the
 Deakin Guide does help to consolidate a (virtual) space for policies, however there is little coherence for the user to locate readily all the
 associated policy and procedures related to assessment.

 Another added complexity at Deakin is its complex hierarchy of policy context which appears to be: Legislation/ Statutes & Regulations
 > Enabling Policy> Policy> Operational Policy > Procedures > Rules. This institutional practice, combined with some policies being
 differentiated for HE and VET sectors while others aren’t, also adds to the level of complexity of understanding assessment policy and its
 consequences for teaching practice within the Deakin context.

 Interesting
 The Deakin Guide has assessment policies and procedures for both Higher Education and VET sectors. These have been designed as
 separate legislation, policy and procedure/ operational documents specific to each of the respective sectors. It is interesting to note where
 the principles of assessment are located within the regulatory/ policy framework of the university for each sector. The principles of
 assessment for the HE sector are embedded within the “Assessment (Higher Education) – Procedure” (approved by Academic Board on 6
 Nov 2003) while the assessment principles for the VET sector are enshrined within the “Assessment (VET) – Operational Policy
 (approved by Academic Board on 4 Dec 2003).

 To provide a comparison of the principles of assessment between the HE (see Table 7) and VET sectors at Deakin, the VET principles
 have been defined in the following way.
 “Assessment in VET courses must:
                                                                                                                                          Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                      144
                                                                                                                             APPENDIX D
                                                                          Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

    •   comply with the assessment guidelines in the applicable nationally endorsed Training Packages or the assessment requirements
        specified in accredited courses;
    • lead to the issuing of a statement of attainment or qualification under the Australian Qualifications Framework when a person is
        assessed as competent against nationally endorsed unit(s) of competency in the applicable Training Package or modules specified
        in the applicable accredited course;
    • are valid, reliable, fair and flexible;
    • enable students to be informed of the context and purpose of the assessment and the assessment process;
    • focus on the application of knowledge and skill to the standard of performance required in the workplace and cover all aspects of
        workplace performance, including task skills, task management skills, contingency management skills and job role environment
        skills;
    • involve the evaluation of sufficient evidence to enable judgements to be made about whether competency has been attained;
    • provide for feedback to the applicant about the outcomes of the assessment process and guidance on future options in relation to
        those outcomes;
    • be equitable for all persons, taking account of individual needs relevant to the assessment;
    • provide for reassessment on appeal.
All students enrolled in a module or unit of competency will undertake equivalent assessment tasks.”
Extract from Assessment (VET) – Operational Policy; s.6 – 7.

This example of how a university is managing a dual sector context provides interesting insights for us at RMIT to consider as we move
forward to designing our concept of an assessment policy and procedures manual.




                                          Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                  Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                            145
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                   Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.7: Griffith University’s Assessment Policy
                                                                                                           Assessment Policy Details                                     Description                                                Overarching Philosophy &/or principles


                 Also see: Griffith Institute for Higher Education: http://www.griffith.edu.au/gihe
                                                                                                      Assessment is found under the               There is no ‘Assessment Manual’ as such but the               Philosophy of Assessment
                    Learning and Teaching; http://www.griffith.edu.au/learning-teaching               Learning and Teaching menu (from            Assessment website linked to the Learning and Teaching        Assessment is the process of forming a judgement about the quality and extent of student
                                                                                                      Griffith’s homepage), specifically          website could be seen as the assessment manual, which goes    achievement or performance, and therefore by inference a judgement about the learning itself.
                                                                                                      “Developing Curriculum”.                    further than many other institutions’ assessment manuals as   Assessment inevitably shapes the learning the takes place; that is, what students learn and how
                                                                                                      http://www.griffith.edu.au/learning-        it draws together relevant assessment policies and            they learn it should reflect closely the purposes and aims of the course of study.
                                                                                                      teaching/developing-the-                    procedures in addition to related information and resources
                                                                                                      curriculum/assessment                       to support academic staff with issues of assessment within    The aims of assessment include:
                                                                                                                                                  the one website location.                                          •    Improving the quality of the curriculum (courses and programs);
                                                                                                      The Assessment homepage contains                                                                               •    Evaluating the effectiveness of the teaching process and facilitating continuing
                                                                                                      information about:                          The Assessment Policy specifies the University’s                        improvement;
University




                                                                                                      - Key policies and documents                assessment philosophy and the general principles that guide        •    Improving and promoting subsequent learning through feedback that is clear,
                                                                                                      - University committees                     assessment practices.                                                   informative, timely and relevant;
                                                                                                      - Teaching support:                                                                                            •    Formally certifying achievements for external audiences; and
                                                                                                        - good practice guide: developing         Furthermore, the assesment policy identifies the following
                                                                                                                                                                                                                     •    Accountability to the University, accrediting bodies, employers and the wider
                                                                                                      effective assessment                        related policies, procedures and forms:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          community.
                                                                                                        - assessing learning                      - Alternative Assessment for Students with Disabilities
University: Griffith




                                                                                                        - teaching and assessment in large        - Examinations Timetabling Policy and Procedures
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Assessment methods may take a variety of forms: the key criterion for choice among methods
                                                                                                      classes                                     - Guidelines for Assessment Boards
                                                                                                                                                                                                                should be appropriateness to the learning outcomes. Assessment should be criteria based that
                                                                                                        - conducting an assessment marking        - Guidelines for Dealing with Lost Assessment Items           than norm referenced, and may include individual or collaborative achievement or both. The
                                                                                                      meeting with sessional teachers.            - Guidelines for Group Assessment, Self-Assessment and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                requirements for learner success should be made clear, and the overall strategy should be to
                                                                                                                                                  Peer Assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                                                develop in students the ability to evaluate the quality of their own work in order to equip them to
                                                                                                      Assessment Policy can be downloaded at:     - Guidelines to Assist Staff in Designing Assessment          function as professionals with a commitment to lifelong learning.
                                                                                                      http://www62.gu.edu.au/policylibrary.nsf    Requirements
                                                                                                      /xmainsearch/65e95921348eb64c4a256b         - Policy on Academic Misconduct                               Assessment practices within the University are based on the general principles of criteria based
                                                                                                      dd0062f3b0?opendocument                     - Policy on Invigilation of Examinations                      assessment. These are that the desired learning outcomes for a course of study are clearly
                                                                                                                                                  - Role of the Course Convenor
                                                                                                                                                                                                                specified; assessment tasks are designed to indicate progress towards the desired learning
                                                                                                      Status: Approved                            - Role of the Program Convenor                                outcomes; and the assessment grade is a measure of the extent to which the learning outcomes
                                                                                                      Approval Date: 13 Dec 2007                                                                                have been achieved. The standard of performance that is required for the award of a particular
                                                                                                      Review Date: 2009                                                                                         grade is a judgement that is based on the professional expertise of the various staff who
                                                                                                      Approval Authority: Academic                                                                              contribute to the assessment process and is informed by experience with accepted standards,
                                                                                                      Committee                                                                                                 including, where appropriate, standards in other institutions. There is no pre-determined
                                                                                                                                                                                                                distribution of grades as the outcome of assessing a group of students.




 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 A strength of Griffith’s assessment Learning and Teaching website is how it clusters policy, practice and support around nine broad
 themes under ‘developing curriculum’ (i.e. academic integrity; assessment; blended learning; curriculum design; distinctive learning
 experiences; evaluation; graduate skills and student outcomes; student support; teaching scholarship). This ‘one stop shop’, user friendly
 approach to thinking about and developing curriculum makes it easy for the academic, or teaching teams, to readily access and utilise the
 material for their curriculum design and development. All the policy and resources related to assessment are located at this one website.

 Minus
 While there is an overarching philosophy statement of assessment in the assessment policy, Griffith’s assessment principles aren’t stated
 explicitly. The overall structure for the ‘core’ assessment policy is not presented as a framework, which makes it difficult to determine
 quickly what is covered by the policy. A general sense of the issues addressed in the assessment policy can only be determined by
 scrolling down the webpage. Using this practice, the issues addressed in Griffith’s assessment policy are:
     1. Philosophy of Assessment
     2. Roles
     3. The Assessment Requirements for a Course
     4. Award of Grades
     5. Pass Conceded Grades, Supplementary Assessment
     6. Special Consideration, Extensions and Deferred Assessment
     7. Conduct of Students in Examinations
     8. Cheating, Plagiarism
     9. Notification of Results
     10. Appeals Against Award of Grade
     11. Disposal of Assessment Material
     12. Responsibilities of Examiners and Course Convenors
     13. Responsibility of Faculty Assessment Boards.

 The ‘Guidelines to Assist Staff in Designing Assessment’ seems to indicate a policy procedure type of document and holds promise that
 it will include resources and support to teaching staff about how to design innovative and appropriate assessment aligned with the
 university’s stated philosophy on assessment. However, the document is very brief (less than one page) and deals with the issue of the
 standard assessment load for a typical undergraduate course (i.e. a 10 credit point course should be broadly equivalent to 5, 000 word
 assignment or a 3 hour written examination or equivalent combination of other assessment tasks) and, unfortunately, bears no further
 advice about how to go about designing assessment.

 Interesting
 While the “Guidelines to Assist Staff in Designing Assessment” provide limited advice to teaching staff about ways to design
 assessment, the attempt of the policy to define the ‘workload standard’ for a course is of interest to us at RMIT as we engage with
 conceptualising assessment standards and standardisation. This policy was approved by Griffith’s Academic Board in May 2001, so it
 may be useful to gain insights from Griffith of the impacts of this policy implementation to see what works and what challenges have
 been identified.

 The “Guidelines for Group Assessment, Self Assessment and Peer Assessment” defines usefully these assessment types and provides
 some key insights into practice that supports these types of assessment. However, like the “Guidelines to Assist Staff in Designing
 Assessment”, there are limitations to the advice provided and further support to teaching staff including case studies and/or exemplars
 would be useful to teaching teams considering to taking these types of assessment within their assessment strategies. This said, these
 guidelines make for useful starting points for our own assessment manual at RMIT.


                                                                                                                                                 Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                146
                                                                                                                             APPENDIX D
                                                                          Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

Another area of interest is the way Griffith has articulated the roles of the course convenor (i.e. course coordinator) and the program
convenor (i.e. program coordinator/ leader/manager) and their significant contribution to learning, teaching and assessment, particularly
from the perspective of ensuring a quality learning experience. The policy statements for Role of the Course Convenor and Role of the
Program Convenor outline the key responsibilities of each role towards ensuring the learning and how that learning is assessed is
achieved. Expectations are explicit and would also provide key measures for assisting the determination of assessment standards. The
responsibilties are articulated clearly and could assist the workplanning process in relation to the demands these roles inculcate. These
policy documents may provide useful to RMIT as it considers the notions of assessment standards.




                                          Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                  Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                            147
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                                              Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.8: University of Queensland’s (UQ) Asssessment Policy
                                                                                                           Assessment Policy Details                                                          Description                                                              Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                                       Handbook of University                     The Handbook of University Policies & Procedures (HUPP) is an online collation of the                        Philosophy statement and principles
                                                                                                                                                  universities policies. The Assessment policy is found within the Teaching and Learning section               Assessment serves a range of purposes including the (i)
                                                                                                       Policies & Procedures contains             (Section 3) but there are a number of related policies that are identified related to, or have reference
                   Teaching and Educational Development Institute (TEDI): http://www.tedi.uq.edu.au/   the University’s policy tools across all                                                                                                                development of student learning (formative), (ii) making of
                                                                                                                                                  to, assessment. These related policies linked directly from the Assessment policy include:                   judgements about students learning (summative) and (iii)
                                                                                                       its functions. One function presented
                                                                                                                                                  - General Award Rules (Part 1A – Assessment)                                                                 monitoring of student learning as a measure of teaching
                                                                                                       is ‘Teaching and Learning’ (section
                       Teaching and Learning at UQ; http://www.uq.edu.au/teaching-learning/


                                                                                                                                                  - 3.20.8: Curriculum Review                                                                                  effectiveness (evaluation). This [assessment] policy provides the
                                                                                                       3).
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.20.9: The Course Profile (The course profile is a critical resource for students, detailing course       compulsory framework within which assessment are to be
                                                                                                       url:
                                                                                                                                                  aims, objectives and graduate attributes, teaching and learning activity modes, how performance in           managed.
                                                                                                       http://www.uq.edu.au/hupp/index.htm
                                                                                                                                                  the course will be assessed and other general assessment expectations and penalties. ie this is like
                                                                                                       l?page=25075
                                                                                                                                                  our RMIT Course Guides)                                                                                      A first principle is that all assessment, whether graded or not,
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.30.3: Arrangements for Reasonable Adjustment in Examinations for Students with a Disability              should be seen as formative. A second principle is that students
                                                                                                       Within ‘Teaching and Learning’ is a
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.1: Student Charter                                                                                    should be given the opportunity to develop as a result of such
of Queensland




                                                                                                       section on Assessment (Policy No.
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.7: The Provision of Alternative Academic Arrangement for Student with a Disability                    feedback, and that this should be reflected in the weighting given to
                                                                                                       3.30.1).
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.15: Programs and Asssessment for Elite Athletes                                                       and timing of summative assessment across the semester. Providing
                                                                                                       http://www.uq.edu.au/hupp/index.htm
                                                                                                       l?page=25109&pid=25108                                                                                                                                  feedback to students on their progress throughout a course of study
                                                                                                                                                  Other related policies identified include:                                                                   is critical to improving student learning.
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.12: Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
                                                                                                       Also related to Assessment Policy in
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.20.5: Statement of Graduate Attributes                                                                   Matters relating specifically to summative assessment have been
                                                                                                       this section is:
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.20.1: Maintenance of Academic Records                                                                    defined to ensure that equitable and transparent processes are
                                                                                                       Arrangements for Reasonable
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.60.1: Procedures for Dealing with Student Discipline and Misconduct Matters                              applied.
                                                                                                       Adjustment in Examinations for
University: University




                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.10 Student Grievance Resolution
                                                                                                       Students with a Disability
                                                                                                                                                  - 3.40.11 Appeals to Senate by Students                                                                      The University of Queensland uses criterion-referenced assessment
                                                                                                       url:
                                                                                                       http://www.uq.edu.au/hupp/index.htm                                                                                                                     as the method to explicitly define the relationships between
                                                                                                                                                  The Assessment Policy (3.30.1) examines the following categories:                                            summative assessment and their (i) learning objectives, (ii)
                                                                                                       l?page=25111&pid=25108
                                                                                                                                                  - Overview                                                                                                   standards to be met (iii) performance expectations held of students,
                                                                                                                                                  - Description: formative and summative assessment; criterion referenced assessment                           and (iv) award of grades. In criterion referenced assessment,
                                                                                                                                                  - Information about assessment                                                                               judgements about the quality of students’ performance are made by
                                                                                                       Status of Assessment Policy:
                                                                                                                                                  - forms of assessment                                                                                        reference to predetermined criteria and standards and not by
                                                                                                       Approved
                                                                                                                                                  - spread and timing of assessment                                                                            reference to the achievement of other students. The following
                                                                                                       Date approved: 21/03/2008
                                                                                                                                                  - anonymous marking                                                                                          definitions apply:
                                                                                                       Approval Authority: Senate
                                                                                                                                                  - negative marking                                                                                                 -     criterion: a property or characteristic by which the
                                                                                                       Date for next review: 27/3/2011
                                                                                                                                                  - moderation                                                                                                             quality of something may be judged. Specifying criteria
                                                                                                                                                  - examinations                                                                                                           nominates qualities of interest and utility but does not
                                                                                                       Contact Officer: Senior Manager,
                                                                                                                                                  - provision of feedback                                                                                                  have anything to offer, or make any assumptions about,
                                                                                                       Student Administration
                                                                                                                                                  - award of grades                                                                                                        actual quality.
                                                                                                                                                  - finalisation of results                                                                                          -     standard: a definite level of achievement aspired to or
                                                                                                                                                  - remarking assessment                                                                                                   attained. Standards specify level of quality (or
                                                                                                                                                  - release of examination papers                                                                                          achievement, or performance) for each criterion.
                                                                                                                                                  - assessment involving near relatives and close associates
                                                                                                                                                  - grievances
                                                                                                                                                  - quality assurance in assessment
                                                                                                                                                  - appointment and role of chief examiners
                                                                                                                                                  With appendices related to: grading system; and exemption from releasing examination papers.
 PMI Analysis
 Plus
 The University of Queensland’s Teaching and Educational Development Institute (TEDI) provides well-focussed and detailed resources
 in the “Teaching and Learning Support” online menu, which includes: flexible learning; teaching toolbox; assessment; tutor training;
 postgraduate advising; and, graduate attributes.

 The ‘Assessment’ online resource is very well developed and includes themes such as:
 - about assessment (and this includes the “Assessment for Learning” that is part of the UQ’s Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
 series)
 - criterion referenced assessment
 - course purpose statements
 - learning goals & graduate attributes
 - designing an assessment program
 - criteria, standards and marking schemes
 - grades and feedback
 - group assessment
 - downloads.

 This website might provide us with further ideas about what kinds of resources we might want to identify to support our RMIT
 Assessment Manual.

 Minus
 Unlike many of the other manuals, not all the assessment related policies are grouped together in the one area at UQ (eg Academic
 integrity and plagiarism is not linked under Assessment). This also makes it more difficult to locate the entire suite of assessment related
 policies; and related policies are difficult to discern as they are identified using policy section numbers (e.g. 3.20.8) rather than by use of
 their titles.

 The philosophy framework and principles are poorly presented in terms of the structure of policy ie it is embedded in ‘Description’. The
 quality of text is also of poorer quality when compared to other institutions. For example, see first principle: is this a helpful definition for
 practitioners? Furthermore, it is not clear whether UQ has a level of procedures that operationalise the policies. This, again, raises theh
 question of the need to separate policy from procedures.

 Interesting
 It is interesting to note that UQ has established an Assessment Subcommittee (incidentally, an elearning Subcommittee has also been
 simmilarly established 10), which reports to the University’s Teaching and Learning Committee. The Assessment Subcommittee is
 responsible to ‘make investigations and advise the Academic Board, through the Teaching and Learning Committee, in relation to any
 matter asociated with the conduct of assessment. In this role, the Assessment Subcomittee will –
      • Review, monitor and promote quality assurance in assessment and report ot the Academic Board through the Teaching and
          Learning Committee;
      • Advise the Academic Board, through the Teaching and Learning Committee, on policies designed to enhance the quality,
          effectiveness and efficiency of assessment; and


 10
               http://www.uq.edu.au/academic-board/index.html?page=57134&pid=14559
                                                                                                                                                          Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                                               148
                                                                                                                               APPENDIX D
                                                                            Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

      •   Determine any matter arising in connection with, or incidental to, assessment where there is no other officer or body of the
          University as required or authorised by Statute or by the Assessment Rules or any other rules to determine it.”
                                                                     Extract from “Terms of Reference” of the Assessment Subcommittee” 11

Examples of issues managed recently by the Assessment Subcommittee include: using multiple choice questions as formative and
summative assessment; developing guidelines for conducting oral examinations; investigating moderation practices across the university
with the view of developing guidelines; and further review of assessment policies. Should RMIT consider establishing a similar function
within its Learning and Teaching Committee structure?




11
     http://www.uq.edu.au/academic-board/index.html?page=15004&pid=14559
                                            Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                    Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                              149
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                                      Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.9: University of Western Australia’s (UWA) Asssessment Policy
                                                                                          Assessment Policy Details                               Description                                                         Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                       The UWA’s official policy on            The ‘Guidelines on Assessment’ provides a             Purposes of Assessment
                                                                                                                               detailed contextual background of the development     Formal assessment is an integral part of the teaching and learning process and as such should enhance effective
                                                                                       assessment is enshrined within
                                                                                                                               of the guidelines, which includes external links eg   learning and contribute, both short and long-term, to improved teaching.
                                                                                       the Academic Council’s 1995             AVCC principles (2002) and internal links and
                   Teaching and Learning; http://www.teachingandlearning.uwa.edu.au/

                                                                                       Guidelines on Assessment.               context eg mission statement, charter of student      In terms of the Educational Principles of the University, as set out in the Strategic Plan, “students at the
                                                                                                                               rights, need for guidelines on assessment.            University of Western Australia are encouraged and facilitated to develop the ability and desire:
                      Centre for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning (CATL):


                                                                                       The Assessment Policy (ie Guidelines                                                                •    to master the subject matter, concepts and techniques of their chosen discipline(s) at internationally-
                                                                                       on Assessment) can be viewed at:        Other areas that are captured in the Guidelines on               recognised levels and standards;
of Western Austrralia




                                                                                       http://www.secretariat.uwa.edu.au/ho    Assessment include:                                         •    to acquire the skills required to learn, and to continue through life to learn, from a variety of sources
                                                                                       me/policies/assessment                  - purposes of assessment                                         and experiences;
                                                                                       This page also identifies related       - responsibilities of the different stakeholders in         •    to adapt acquired knowledge to new situations;
                                                                                       policies to assessment:                 assessment eg Academic Board, Teaching and                  •    to communicate in English clearly, concisely and logically;
                                                                                       - Guidelines on Learning Skills         Learning Committee, Faculty Boards, Deans,                  •    to acquire the skills needed to embrace rapidly-changing technologies in a global environment;
                                                                                       - Minimum Essentials for Good           Schools, Unit coordinators, staff members, etc.
                                       http://www.catl.uwa.edu.au/




                                                                                                                                                                                           •    to think and reason logically and creatively;
                                                                                       Practice in Assessment
                                                                                                                                                                                           •    to undertake problem identification, analysis and solution;
                                                                                       - Examinations
                                                                                       - Study and Exam Provisions for                                                                     •    to question accepted wisdom and be open to new ideas and possibilities;
                                                                                       Students with Disabilities              Resources that support the practice of assessment           •    to acquire mature judgement and responsibility in ethical, moral, social, and practical, as well as
                                                                                                                               are limited. A key document (2001) is provided                   academic matters;
                                                                                                                               online called “Assessing your students: Practical           •    to work independently and in a team;
                                                                                       Download the PDF Guidelines on          advice for enhancing your teaching and learning”.           •    to acquire cross-cultural and other competencies to take a citizenship and leadership role in the
University: University




                                                                                       Assessment at:                          Available at:                                                    local, national or international community.”
                                                                                       http://www.secretariat.uwa.edu.au/__d   http://www.catl.uwa.edu.au/__data/page/75753/ass
                                                                                       ata/page/20809/Guidelines-              essment.pdf                                           Assessment practices should take these principles into account and wherever possible provide a measure of the
                                                                                       Assessment.pdf                                                                                success of the University’s students in achieving the skills listed. Clearly, however the level and kind of course
                                                                                                                                                                                     in which a student is involved will dictate greater or lesser emphasis in each of the skills, and this is a matter
                                                                                       Status: Approved                        It should also be noted that UWA is currently         for judgement by those involved in determining the curriculum and the assessment methods for each course.
                                                                                       Last date of review: 8 Sept 2005        reviewing its Assessment policy context,
                                                                                                                               particularly as part of their Teaching Quality        More specifically, formal assessment serves the following purposes, among others:
                                                                                                                               Indicators (TQI) Project.                                 •     Contributing to the student learning process.
                                                                                                                                                                                         •     Providing students with feedback on their level of achievement, and providing the opportunity for
                                                                                                                                                                                               them to understand and benefit from understanding the reasons for the assessment given.
                                                                                                                                                                                         •     Providing students with an understanding of the standards of work expected for assessment at
                                                                                                                                                                                               specific levels.
                                                                                                                                                                                         •     Providing staff with information about the effectiveness of their teaching.
                                                                                                                                                                                         •     Providing a fair judgement of a student’s level of achievement.
                                                                                                                                                                                         •     Providing an indicator of likely future academic attainment.




                                                                                                                                  Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


 Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Date: Nov 2008
 RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                                                                                                                                    150
                                                                                                                              APPENDIX D
                                                                           Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

PMI Analysis
Plus
Similar to Griffith, UWA articulates in its “Guidelines on Assessment” policy that the responsibilities for ‘best practice in assessment’ is
‘shared by many groups and individuals within the University community’. In section seven (Responsibilities) it outlines in detail the
diverse levels of responsibilties across the university involved in ensuring quality assessment practice.

Minus
The brief document on assessment (total of nine pages) provides an institutional context for assessment (undergraduate and coursework
Masters degrees). Much of it outlines the links that align assessment with the university context such as the values in the mission
statement and the Charter of Student Rights. While this is important, the details of procedures seem to reside within faculty level, which
may raise issues or concerns about how to measure assessment standards (e.g. consistency of practice) or benchmark assessment
processes across the institution. The key issues addressed in the “Guidelines on Asessment” policy are:
    1. Relevant Legislation and Rules
    2. Relevant AVCC and HERDSA Documents
    3. Relevance of University Mission Statement
    4. Relevance of Charter of Student Rights
    5. Need of Guidelines on Assessment
    6. Purposes of Assessment
    7. Responsibilties.

Interesting
The articulation of responsibilities and expectations of various groups and individuals related to assessment (section seven) may be useful
to RMIT, particularly in relation to determining indicators and measures of assessment practice. Furthermore, the ‘Minimum Essentials
for Good Practice in Assessment’ (initially developed in 1997 and updated in 2004) is also an interesting concept.




                                           Report: Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian university context


Author: Dr Josephine Lang                                                                                                   Date: Nov 2008
RMIT, TQI Report Appendix                                                                                             151
                                                                                                                                                                                                                APPENDIX D
                                                                                                                                                             Review of Assessment Policy in the Australian University Context

 Table 2.10: University of Tasmania’s (UTas) Assessment Policy
                                                                                      Assessment Policy Details                                Description                                                   Overarching Philosophy &/or principles
                                                                                 Policy on Assessment Practice is      In addition to the principal document in assessment, which is     The Role of Assessment in Teaching and Learning
                                                                                                                       the Policy on Assessment Practice, there is the Academic          - Assessment is the process of evaluating the quality and extent of student achievement or
                                                                                 the broad policy framework for
                                                                                                                       Assessment Rule No. 2 and the Code of Conduct for                 performance in learning and as such influences the focus and approach of students to learning.
                                                                                 assessment practice in the UTas.      Teaching and Learning.                                            - Assessment has two principal purposes – a formative purpose and a summative purpose. The
                                                                                 http://www.admin.utas.edu.au/aca                                                                        assessment tasks within a course may range from primarily formative to primarily summative but
                                                                                 demic/acservices/meetings/Senate      The key issues found under the “Policy on Assessment              the overall balance of the assessment tasks must be to facilitate the learning process.
                   Teaching and Learning; http://www.utas.edu.au/tl/index.html



                                                                                                                       Practice” (a 4 page document) are:                                - The formative purpose of assessment is to encourage a ‘deep’ approach to learning through
                                                                                 /Appendix/4_02E1.2.doc
                                                                                                                             •     Background                                            students’ own activity and engagement with the subject.
                                                                                                                             •     The Role of Assessment in Teaching and Learning       - The summative purpose of assessment is to lead to the certification of achievement or ability of
                                                                                 Rule No. 2 Academic                         •     Principles of Student Assessment                      students for external audiences.
                                                                                 Assessment is part of the suite of          •     Responsibilities and Obligations of the University    - an important aspect of assessment is that it should develop in students the ability to
                                                                                                                                                                                         independently evaluate the quality of their work.
of Tasmania




                                                                                 approved documentation that                       and its Faculties and Schools
                                                                                 supports the Policy on Assessment           •     Responsibilities and Obligations of Academic Staff    Principles of Student Assessment
                                                                                                                             •     Rights, Responsibilities and Obligations of           Assessment practices vary across the disciplines, nevertheless the University believes that all
                                                                                 Practice framework. It provides                   Students.                                             assessment practice should be underpinned by a common set of principles:
                                                                                 many of the operational/                                                                                 1. Assessment practices must be transparent and fair.
                                                                                 administrative procedures that        The Code of Conduct for Teaching and Leaning states that the       2. Assessment must be designed both to support student learning and to test achievement. Such
                                                                                                                       University undertakes to provide a secure, supportive yet             design involves not only the methodology of assessment but its timing and the provision of
                                                                                 support assessment practice. It is
                                                                                                                       challenging environment for teaching and learning and research        constructive feedback.
University: University




                                                                                 available online at:                  supervision – an environment which students will be stimulated     3. In the Unit Outline, students should be informed of the relationship of assessment tasks to the
                                                                                 http://acserv.admin.utas.edu.au/rul   to reach a high level of intellectual attainment.                     unit’s aims and objectives and the expectations of assessment in the units in which they are
                                                                                 es/Rule2.doc                                                                                                enrolled, including any formal criteria and standards against which their performance is to be
                                                                                                                       Additional resources:                                                 evaluated, length (words/ duration), weighting, submission/ sitting dates for all assessment
                                                                                                                       UTas Guidelines for Good Assessment Practice (2007)                   tasks, and penalties for late submission.
                                                                                                                       is an online resource with detailed advice on assessment           4. Assessment practices should be inclusive of the needs of a diverse student population and
                                                                                                                       purpose and design in curriculum. It is available at:                 support the principles of equity, recognising individual and group diversity and eliminating
                                                                                 Status: Approved                                                                                            any capacity to disadvantage students on grounds other than academic merit. Language must
                                                                                                                       http://www.utas.edu.au/tl/docs/guide-for-good-assessment.pdf
                                                                                                                       The Guidelines contents include: