Mission, Principles and Terms of Reference of the Quality Assurance Office
The Quality Assurance Office (QAO) plays a key role in the development, monitoring and reporting of quality across the university. The QAO has a clearly defined mission, principles and terms of reference, which indicate the commitment of the university to continuous improvement.
In line with the development of the University, the Quality Assurance Office (QAO) was established in 2009 under the supervision of the Registrar; its mission statement is:
To ensure the highest quality learning, teaching, curricula, research and administration in the university through the development, implementation and continuous improvement of quality, quality improvement and quality enhancement in the university, and to ensure that the highest quality systems and procedures to achieve these operate. These serve the University’s vision of becoming a pre-eminent institution of higher learning and research, and promoting the development of ethical, rounded and skilled graduates who contribute towards the development of the local and global community.
The principles on which quality assurance are built in the university are developmental, to ensure continuous improvement through the involvement of all relevant parties within and outside the university. The work of the Quality Assurance Office and, indeed quality assurance across the university, rests on several principles:
- Quality assurance and enhancement are developmental and are part of the university’s strategy for ensuring the highest quality learning, teaching, curricula, research and academic operations and standards of the university.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are collaborative and cooperative.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are empowering and involve all areas and of the university, parties and stakeholders.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are designed to meet internal and external approval, accreditation and recognition requirements.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are ongoing and part of the university’s strategies for continuous improvement and excellence;
- Quality assurance and enhancement practices at all areas of the university are documented, monitored, reviewed and evaluated.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are designed to promote institutional and public confidence in the academic standards of the university.
- Quality assurance and enhancement are transparent, systematic, rigorous and equitable.
- Quality assurance and enhancement focus on input, processes, outcomes and impact.
- Quality assurance and enhancement is a supported and facilitated process in the university.
The main responsibility of the Quality Assurance Office (QAO) is to provide administrative and substantive leadership, guidance and support for QA at all levels of the university, and to support the institutional and faculty accreditation processes and contents. These responsibilities are framed as follows:
- to formulate strategies, policies, systems, procedures and practices for the university’s academic quality assurance and enhancement
- to promote and implement quality-related strategic developments within sustainable quality assurance and enhancement frameworks and procedures and in accordance with the university vision and strategic planning;
- to promote the culture of academic quality within the university
- to develop policies and guidelines on teaching evaluation, programme review and student learning assessment
- to monitor, review, audit, evaluate and continuously develop the university’s quality together with its quality assurance and enhancement strategies, frameworks and procedures at all levels of the university, for the promotion of academic excellence in learning, teaching and research;
- to provide administrative and substantive support for quality assurance and enhancement at all levels of the university, and to support the institutional and course accreditation processes and contents for external organizations and agencies;
- to monitor, review, audit, evaluate and continuously develop institutional and course accreditation;
- to advise on program and course approval and development;
- to oversee the allocation of teaching development grants and organize teaching enhancement activities;
- to compile publications on learning and teaching enhancement.