29 Feb 2024

sparqs' Tertiary Quality Student Expert Group

As the sector continues to work towards developing a single tertiary approach to quality for colleges and universities, sparqs has established a Tertiary Quality Student Expert Group (TQSEG). The rationale in setting up this group was to provide a joined-up approach to student voice within the move to Scotland’s Tertiary Quality Enhancement Framework (TQEF), enabling students to discuss and influence the developing approach.

As there are a number of national sector committees working on elements of the TQEF, sparqs suggested that student reps could be found for these committees in part through volunteers from TQSEG. This would allow the students on these groups to have the support of a peer network and of sparqs outside of each meeting. The groups include those focusing on developing the new external review method, the national approach to enhancement and the Tertiary Enhancement Topic - read our article on a new report on the design and delivery of digital/blended learning in Scotland’s colleges and universities, which has been developed by sector agencies on the Tertiary Enhancement Topic Steering Group.

TQSEG members attending these groups are able to gather perspectives from their fellow students to help them contribute within the national workstreams, as well as report back to TQSEG on key decisions and developments. TQSEG also helps to ensure student engagement at as many meetings as possible, with members able to substitute easily if another rep is unable to attend a scheduled sector committee meeting.

In late summer 2023, we put out a call for students interested in the tertiary quality developments and brought together the student expert group in October 2023. Student reps and students’ association staff who had already been identified by QAA Scotland to sit on one of their key committees were also invited to join the student expert group.  The group meets monthly and to date we have held four TQSEG meetings.

We will review the TQSEG at the end of the academic year to consider its remit and membership going forward. It is proving to be a valuable initiative so far and our thanks go to all the student officers contributing to these important conversations about the future of Scotland’s quality system, ensuring students play a key role in the development of the TQEF.

More on the SFC’s review of the quality arrangements and the move to the tertiary model can be found on our Quality Arrangements webpage, including current guidance to colleges and universities for the current year.

For more information or if you have any queries about the group, please contact Megan Brown, Senior Development Consultant – megan.brown@sparqs.ac.uk.

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