The university quality arrangements in Scotland, with student engagement right at the centre, are halfway through a four-year cycle and therefore the process of reviewing these arrangements for implementation in two years’ time is getting underway. There will be a joint NUS/sparqs event on Wednesday 21st January 2015 - register for a place here. This will be the main opportunity for students to shape NUS Scotland’s response to the consultation.
Over the last three cycles the arrangements in Scotland have supported a culture that has led to a focus on our universities working individually and together to continually enhance the student learning experience. The attention given to learning and teaching matters has developed significantly over this time. Throughout this time the partnership work with students has been a real area of growth and this work has contributed to quality enhancements across the sector.
We have much to be proud of but the review offers us a perfect opportunity to consider if the current arrangements can continue to provide the right mechanisms and environment to ensure Scotland’s universities provide the very best possible experience for our students. The views of students will be essential if we are to develop the best possible arrangements. As well as coming along to the event on 21st January, student officers should find out who in their university is leading their institutional response. Universities have been asked to incorporate student views into their responses so the sooner you start these discussions the better.
The review is entirely independent of developments taking place in England, Wales and Northern Ireland where HEFCE has announced significant changes to its relationship with QAA that could have implications for the way quality arrangements elsewhere develop in the future. The Scottish Funding Council has made it clear that these changes will not affect the relationship between itself, QAA Scotland, institutions and other bodies. However, the possible further divergence between Scotland and the rest of the UK relating to quality arrangements will be an important consideration.
Further information can be found in the NUS Scotland student officer briefing.