Quality Manual

Information about Provision of Higher Education

 This policy has been drafted to comply with the requirements of Part C of the UK Quality Code for Higher Education ‘Information about higher education provision’ available at http://www.qaa.ac.uk/AssuringStandardsAndQuality/quality-code/Pages/Quality-Code-Part-C.aspx . and the Expectation that higher education providers produce information for their intended audiences about the learning opportunities they offer that is fit for purpose, accessible and trustworthy.

1. Information on the University’s mission, values and strategy

The University makes information about its mission, values and strategy available on its web pages, and also in printed format.  Some examples of this information are given below.

The University’s Global Strategy 2020 articulates the University’s mission, vision, core principles and values and is available at http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/about/strategy/index.aspx .  This includes sections on Excellence in Education and Student Life, World-Changing Research, enabling strategies and foundations.

The Teaching and Learning Strategy (http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/tld/strategypolicy/tlstrategy/index.aspx) sets out the University’s core principles in support of its aim for its provision of teaching and learning to be recognised as amongst the best in the world. 

In addition, the University publishes an Internationalisation Strategy at http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/aglobaluniversity/internationalisationstrategy/index.aspx which sets out the University’s principles, purpose, aims and objectives and challenges.

2. Information for prospective students

The University undertakes to provide appropriate and sufficient information to prospective students to enable them to select their programme of study, and to know what will be expected of them when they register to study at the University.  This information is available through a variety of routes, including Open Days, the Prospectus, the University’s web pages, videos and social media channels.  Guidance and advice is available from staff in Schools, Admissions Office and staff in the Student Recruitment Team’s Enquiry Centre to assist prospective students through the applications process.  In addition, information is available about the University’s teaching and learning facilities, student life at Nottingham, support services, opportunities for exchanges and study abroad, as well as information about employability of graduates as part of the requirement to provide course information through the Key Information Set.

3. Information for current students

3.1 The University has agreed that there should be a minimum level of information which must be provided for undergraduate and postgraduate students about their chosen programme of study and, that students should know at the start of their course, how their courses will be taught and assessed. The following comprises information which School/teaching groups should supply and some suggestions for layout and style. The information which is supplied to students about their course must be accurate.

Information must be supplied about the following:

3.2 Course information

• a description of what a modular course comprises, definitions of terms, i.e. what is a module, what is compensation etc

• full details of the course structure and philosophy i.e. how the course progresses, the main themes running through the course, the aims

• specific skills that may be required during the course e.g. essay writing, giving presentations, basic computing skills etc, and when they will be required

• policy on possible module choices within and outside the home School/teaching group

3.3 Assessment information

• the purpose, methods and schedule of assessment tasks during, and at the end of a module or programme of study

• for each module, the format of the assessment(s), including, for written examinations, whether it is essay questions, MCQ etc

• the criteria for assessment including, where appropriate, descriptors of expected standards of student attainment; what is expected in order to pass or to gain a particular grade or classification

• what elements will, and which will not, count towards interim or final assessment and with what weighting or exemption procedures

• the marking and grading conventions that will be used

• the consequences of assessment, such as decisions about progression to the next level, final awards and the right of appeal

• plagiarism; the definition and the penalties (as laid out in the Regulations Governing Suspected Academic Misconduct), including examples of acceptable referencing techniques (see below)

• how and when assessment judgements are published

• any opportunities for re-assessment

• policy on late submission of work

3.4 Other  

• the minimum standards expected of both staff and students e.g. the dates for handing in essays, date by which marked work will be returned to students by staff etc

• channels of communication i.e. how students make their views known, how they receive feedback on their views (e.g. Learning Community Fora)

• role of tutor, giving definitions of academic/personal/year tutor as appropriate, and what sort of queries each deals with

• times when tutors are available/policy on availability

• purchase of books; recommended texts, price, when they will be required during the programme

• week-by-week course details i.e. what will be taught in each week of the programme

• when to start applying for jobs, postgraduate opportunities, who to approach for referees

• information about administrative office hours

3.5 Format for Information

• booklets are preferable to loose sheets.

• style should be `user-friendly' i.e. an explanation should be provided for technical terms used where appropriate

• English should be used, blocks of text could be broken up by putting important points or ideas in boxes.

• booklets specific to the year of the student's course are useful since they ensure that information is imparted at the point in the programme when the students need to know it, rather than overloading students with extraneous information at the start of the programme. A general introductory booklet, supplemented by specific year booklets is the best approach. 

3.6 Plagiarism

Each School/department should have an appropriate mechanism in place for recording that a student has read and understood the guidelines on plagiarism, and that his/her work falls within those guidelines. 

4. Information for students on completion of studies

Students are entitled to receive a full record of their academic achievements when they leave their programme of study.  Degrees and Diplomas are conferred at a degree ceremony.  If a graduand is unable to attend the ceremony the degree will be conferred in absentia and certificates will be sent six to eight weeks after the ceremonies have finished.  Students graduating from 2006 onwards will also receive a Diploma Supplement at the same time as they receive their degree certificate.

Throughout the period of study, students are able to request transcripts of their marks, and to see information about their programmes, including  modules and marks, via the Student Portal.

5. Information about the University’s quality assurance framework

The Quality Manual provides the regulatory framework governing teaching and learning at the University of Nottingham and its provisions have regulatory force.

The Quality Manual contains a section on Collaborative Provision, and a database recording collaborative activity is available. 

Updated July 2017

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