Advance HE welcomes the report on the UUK report on Degree Classification: transparent, consistent and fair academic standards and the consultation launched today by the Quality Assurance Agency on behalf of the UK Standing Committee for Quality Assessment.
The report recommends that degree-awarding bodies strengthen the external examining function and, in particular, that they provide external examiners training to staff. It references the training package for external examiners which Advance HE has developed with a range of higher education providers. The package developed as part of the Degree Standards: external examining project managed by the Office for Students on behalf of the English, Welsh and Northern Ireland administrations has two strands.
The first is a generic professional development course for external examiners available in both blended and online modes. This course has been designed and piloted with eight higher education partners and is currently being delivered to a further 17 ‘early adopter’ institutions. A key element in this strand of the project is that partner higher education institutions are adopting the course and Advance HE is training educational developers to roll out the training of external examiners across their institution.
The second strand of the project involves piloting of approaches to the calibration of academic standards. This has been undertaken at subject level, working with professional and representative bodies such as the Royal Geographical Society, Conservatoires UK, and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
The project is in its third year (of five) and Advance HE would welcome expressions of interest at External.Examining@advance-he.ac.uk