21 Jun 2017

sparqs at #ETConf17

sparqs was delighted to participate in the 3rd International Enhancement in Higher Education Conference run by the Enhancement Themes team at QAA Scotland, which was held in Glasgow from 6th-8th June 2017.

The conference, attended by hundreds of delegates from across Scotland and beyond, included a series of excellent keynotes and several dozen fascinating papers, presentations and posters, plus the launch of the new Enhancement Theme, which will be around using evidence for enhancement. It was a great opportunity to hear about developments in quality enhancement in universities and to share some of our latest practice.

sparqs presented two papers and two posters over the course of the conference.

One paper was on developments in Student Partnership Agreements, including impacts of SPAs so far and plans for updated forthcoming guidance that will take into account sectoral perspectives and practice. You can download the paper and presentation from the conference website.

A second paper shared progress on sparqs’ two projects on engaging students in online & distance learning and transnational education. See more about those projects on our website, and download the paper and presentation from the conference website.

We also presented two posters exploring our work on two current projects. One focused on our guidance for engaging students in Institution-led Review - see an overview on our own website and view our poster on the conference website.

Our other poster introduced our newly launched training materials for taught postgraduate (PGT) course reps. These materials were developed to meet the specific needs of PGT course reps, who often have closer working relationships with teaching staff than undergraduate students, and the training reflects the diverse student profiles and strong professional and industry links characteristic of PGT courses. The materials are designed to be contextualised and delivered by institutions and students’ associations, and include guidance on how to do this.

We are grateful to participants in our Academic Representation Coordinators’ network for their help in developing this new training, and especially to Dundee University Students’ Association and the University of Strathclyde Students' Association who provided more detailed input. See the published PGT materials on our website and our poster on the conference website.

We also were delighted to have a stall at the conference, where a wide range of our materials were available, and through which we were able to make useful and interesting contacts with quality practitioners from across Scotland and from Norway to New Zealand.

The International Enhancement in Higher Education Conference is a major highlight of the quality enhancement calendar in Scotland and beyond, and sparqs was pleased to have been able to contribute but also take so much away in turn.

For further information on any of the above, please contact Simon Varwell – simon.varwell@sparqs.ac.uk or Hannah Clarke – hannah.clarke@sparqs.ac.uk – sparqs Development Consultants.

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