Policy Title – Policy on Student Engagement in Quality Assurance
Policy Number – 21
Functional Area – Academic
Effective and Revised Dates – 13.01.2022
Approving Authority – The Council, University of Sri Jayewardenepura
Administrative Responsibility – Deans of Faculties, Heads of Departments, Director, Welfare Division, Deputy Registrar/Senior Assistant Registrar, Student Welfare Division
Rationale and Purpose:
Engaging students in quality assurance is an essential aspect of education to improve the students’ learning experience in a university. Engaging with students and responding to their opinion allows the academics to improve the learning and teaching activities of a university. Further, the student views and opinion will provide valuable information for the academic staff and the administrators of the university to take informed decisions that will improve the students learning experience.
The University of Sri Jayewardenepura (USJ) recognizes the importance of student engagement in quality assurance and this policy is devised to provide a basis for the current activities in the USJ in this respect. Accordingly, this policy elaborates the USJ commitment to engage students in quality assurance activities and the mechanisms by which students could participate in quality assurance activities.
This policy document identifies the following educational aspects into which students can express their views and opinions through formal representation mechanisms.
- Development of the strategic plan and action plan of the University
- Induction and transition of new students into university level education
- Curriculum review and design
- Delivery of courses
- Learning opportunities and resources
- Student support and guidance
- Community outreach
- Student welfare and well-being
This policy has been developed in alignment with the Quality Assurance Policy and By-law of USJ.
- All students engaged in education at USJ will have the opportunity to be involved in quality assurance and enhancement activities in a manner and a level appropriate to them.
- The USJ is committed to foster active student participation in its quality assurance systems, which include;
- Provision of feedback of students on study programs, courses of study, teaching, learning and assessment activities.
- Implement transparent mechanisms, agreed upon with students, for the nomination and/or election of students into the bodies where students representation is required in quality assurance activities;
- Provide training and continuous support required for students to engage in quality assurance roles; and
- Monitor, review and enhance regularly the effectiveness of the policies and processes for engaging students in quality assurance processes.
- The USJ recognizes that the active student engagement in quality assurance activities is important for the following reasons:
- To encourage the students to take more responsibility and ownership for their learning at the university;
- To enhance deep transformational learning in students;
- To recognize the collective student representation in the learning process and welfare activities; and
- To act as the main channel to obtain feedback from the students to develop and improve all aspects of their university life.
- To create a mutually beneficial relationship between the staff and the students
- The USJ recognizes that all students have an equal voice and opportunity to contribute, regardless of the program of study, gender, religion or disability.
- The USJ encourages the students to engage in decision-making processes, initiate conversations and make suggestions.
- The USJ encourages the academic staff to provide regular feedback to students to review their own academic performance and progress.
- The USJ encourages creating a dialogue between the staff and the students to enable the students to set their learning goals appropriate to their learning and development needs.
- The USJ encourages students to learn independently both within and outside their core program of study.
- The USJ recognizes the importance of active student engagement in the improvement of employability, professionalism and active and responsible citizenship in both local and global contexts.
- At USJ, the students are encouraged and trained to undertake formal roles at a departmental, faculty and university level body, and through the students’ union, subject-based student associations, and other relevant student associations.
- At USJ, the staff is well-informed about student engagement in quality assurance and enhancement activities.
- At USJ, the student engagement in quality assurance and enhancement is recognized appropriately within the education process.
- At USJ, the effectiveness of student engagement in quality assurance and enhancement activities are regularly monitored and reviewed.
Framework for Student Engagement:
- The Centre for Quality Assurance (CQA) will provide oversight in the development, implementation and monitoring of the student engagement strategy of USJ. Faculty Quality Assurance Cells (FQACs) will liaise with CQA in order to implement and monitor the student engagement at Faculty level.
- Student Engagement at University Committees: The student representatives are invited to sit on the Senate Sub Committee on Quality Assurance and any other relevant committees as identified by the Vice Chancellor, Council and Senate of USJ as and when required.
- Student Engagement at Faculty Level: The student representatives are invited to sit on the faculty board and FQAC when their presence is required as to the matters pertaining to quality assurance.
- Student Engagement at Department Level: The student representatives are invited to sit on the department meetings or relevant committees in relation to the subject of study when their presence is required.
- Student Engagement in Institutional and Program Reviews: The students have the opportunity to take part in these reviews by contributing to the preparation of the self-evaluation report, meeting the review team, and working with the academic staff in responding to the review outcomes.
Related Policies and Guidelines:
Policy on Community Services/Outreach and Industry Linkage/Engagement
Policy on Examination
Policy on Program/Curricular Approval, Implementation, Monitoring, Review
Policy on Program/Curricular Deigning
Policy on Teaching/Learning