Quality Manual
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About the Quality Manual

This page provides important information about the University of Nottingham's Quality Manual, as well as its associated governance and responsibilities for compliance across all of the UK, China and Malaysia campuses.

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Overview

Includes: regulatory frameworks and bodies; OfS; QAA; MQA

The Quality Manual sets out the regulatory framework that governs all teaching and learning at the University of Nottingham. Where it is stated that Schools or students ‘should’ take particular actions or follow certain principles, this is a requirement with regulatory force across all of our campuses.

As a Degree Awarding Power (DAP) recognised by the Office for Students (OfS) in England, all of our degrees comply with Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) guidelines and align with the QAA Qualifications Framework. Where students have studied in Malaysia, the degree programme is accredited by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) and recognised by the Malaysian Government.

Where separate procedures or requirements must be set out for an individual campus, this has been stated within the Quality Manual. All of our degree awards are of equal merit and standing across the UK, China and Malaysia campuses.

 

Compliance

Includes: responsibilities; seeking approval for action; role of the Registrar's department

Across all of our campuses, responsibility for quality assurance and for the implementation of the Quality Manual (including module and programme ownership) rests with the Head of School, under the jurisdiction of Senate and its committees. Any Schools with provision on more than one campus will therefore be regarded as multi-campus entities for the purposes of the Quality Manual. For those aspects which are the primary responsibility of professional service departments, the respective units at each campus will need to ensure that equivalent practice is followed subject to the constraints of the local context.

Where action is required, Schools will need to seek approval at University-level as stated within the relevant sections of the Quality Manual. The Registrar’s Department (or equivalent in the international campuses) is responsible for interpreting the Quality Manual and thus, for determining whether an action is in accordance with its provisions and whether an approval at University-level is required.

If a School is informed that an action is outside the provisions of the Quality Manual but still wishes to pursue that particular course, the Registrar’s Department (or equivalent) will arrange for that request to be considered on behalf of Quality and Standards Committee (QSC).
 

Responsibilities and delegation   Flag of United Kingdom   Flag of China   Flag of Malaysia

Includes: responsibilities of the Head of School; delegation of responsibility (in relation to the international campuses)

It is the Head of School’s responsibility to keep their School’s practice under review and in line with the Quality Manual, as reviewed through the Periodic Review process.

Where responsibility is delegated, this should be formally documented and appropriate protocols made clear; where autonomy has been granted to another unit by the Head of School, the School is still responsible for ensuring that the policies and procedures within the Quality Manual are implemented.

Delegation of responsibility (in relation to the international campuses)

Oversight of academic responsibilities and the extent of delegating decision-making to units on specific campuses is at the discretion of individual Schools. However, when making these determinations, the following principles must always be followed:

  • In terms of organisational structure, academic staff in a given subject area at any campus should be regarded as members of the relevant School (although it is noted that contracts of employments may reside with separate legal entities).
  • A clear protocol should exist across campuses to ensure that the appointment process makes full use of recognised expertise among existing staff when making new appointments.
  • Any modules delivered across multiple campuses must observe the same standards of learning outcomes and cover the same core subject matter. It is a fundamental requirement that the content of teaching programmes is equivalent although it does not necessarily have to be identical. The title, structure (outside of compulsory modules) and content may vary between campuses so long as the learning outcomes remain the same.
  • The development of individual modules and overall degree programmes should be regarded as a collaborative process which involves staff across all campuses.
  • Where the same programmes and modules are offered on more than one campus, it is the Head of School’s responsibility to ensure that all modifications to this provision and the manner of its delivery are communicated and implemented across all campuses.
  • The status of internal examiners is equal across all campuses; where examination boards meet at the international campuses, these should be considered as having the same status as UK examination boards.
  • Staff on all campuses should have the opportunity to participate in the assessment process and in award recommendations (including participation in final examination boards); a reasonable expectation might be at least one representative from international campus examination boards at the final external board. Where this is not possible, the School must ensure that there is someone present who can fully represent the view of the examiners at the relevant campus.
  • Staff based at the international campuses should have the opportunity to contribute equally to the operation of quality assurance within their School.
  • The senior management of the international campuses should be consulted about specific quality assurance arrangements at School-level and their agreement secured insofar as they affect the function of those campuses.
  • The Educational Enhancement and Assurance Review (EEAR) process will review academic units at the international campuses as part of their home School. Additional reviews may be conducted as a result of local requirements and separate Campus Reviews will focus on issues regarding context and environment rather than addressing the specific provision of individual academic units.
 

Structure and use

Includes: audiences; navigation; interactive indicators; Policies A - Z; application across campuses; use of flags

The Quality Manual is divided into ten categories with an additional area for governance information. Most of its content will be relevant to staff and students whilst some will only be of interest to staff; some pages are designed for an external audience including applicants.

Navigation

The Quality Manual has been split into 10 main categories, with additional sections to cover Policies, Governance and Recent Changes. These - along with any important sections within those categories - can be accessed through the links in the navigation list on the left hand side of every page.

Please note that individual pages will often be relevant to other sections. Due to the size of their content, individual pages will NOT appear in the navigation list but can be found by way of the Search function, A - Z listings or within their associated category/section menus.

Interactive indicators

All interactive elements within the Quality Manual are indicated in the following ways:

    • PDF documents appear as bullet points and include a   PDF   icon.
    • Word documents appear as bullet points and include a   Microsoft Word   icon.
    • Excel documents appear as bullet points and include a   MSExcelcon   icon.
    • Email links are preceded with a blue " i " icon and end with a   Email   icon.
    • Important information is preceded with a blue " ! " icon
    • Web page links are indicated with a blue background and are usually indented to avoid confusion with headings.

Policies A-Z

From July 2020, all Policies included within the Quality Manual will also be listed within a dedicated Policies section, which will function as a directory. This can be accessed at any time by using the “Policies A - Z” button in the lower left corner of every page (within the Quality Manual)

Application across campuses

It applies equally across all campuses and localised variations have been clearly noted. Where possible, national flags (representing the UK, China and Malaysia campuses) have been added to draw attention to any links and sections which are of relevance to a particular campus. These will appear as follows:

  • Flag of United Kingdom   for the University of Nottingham UK (UNUK) campus
  • Flag of China   for the University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC) campus
  • Flag of Malaysia   for the University of Nottingham Malaysia (UNM) campus
Where there is no indication for a specific campus variation, this means that the content is equally applicable across all of UNUK, UNNC and UNM.
 

Version control and updates

Includes: format and availability; changes to the quality manual; request a change to the quality manual; quality and standards committee

Format and availability

To ensure that its content is constantly available and up-to-date, the Quality Manual is only available on the web. Users are free to print off their own copies but should remember that these may become quickly outdated.

Recent changes

Any changes to the Quality Manual are routinely logged in an area which can be accessed at any time by using the “Recent changes” button in the lower right corner of every page (within the Quality Manual). Regular summaries are also emailed directly to key contacts.

Please note that anyone can request a change to the Quality Manual by submitting a request to Quality and Standards Committee (QSC). For more information about this process, please consult the following:

Quality and Standards Committee

 

If you have any problems or queries relating to the Quality Manual, please email our Quality and Standards team at: Quality-Manual-Enquiries@nottingham.ac.uk   Email

This content was last modified on 16 June 2020

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