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Terms of Reference (PDVC approved) Faculty Education Committee

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Section 1 - Overview

Faculty Education Committee

(1) The Faculty Education Committee (FEC) is established as a committee of the Faculty and has been delegated authority to discharge teaching and learning delegations as prescribed by the Academic Delegations Register, the Dean or Faculty.

(2) These Terms of Reference prescribe the following:

  1. the members of the FEC and the members' method and term of appointment;
  2. the functions of the FEC, and
  3. other matters in connection with the FEC and its operation.

Objectives

(3) The FEC functions as an academic governance and management advisory body to:

  1. oversee Faculty teaching and learning matters and approve or make recommendations about the Faculty’s units and courses, teaching and learning (T&L) activities, student affairs and graduate outcomes in line with academic delegations;
  2. report through the Chair to the Teaching and Learning Committee, in relation to:
    1. academic governance, quality assurance, educational innovations and management of key risks associated with the Faculty’s coursework teaching and learning, coursework student experience, and graduate outcomes, and
    2. development, implementation and review of rules, policies, procedures and guidelines governing the University's coursework teaching and learning and students. 
  3. report through the Chair to the Curriculum Committee of Academic Board on the development, implementation, review, improvement and integrity of the Faculty’s courses and taught program; and
  4. advise the Dean on the Faculty’s coursework program and matters associated with the Faculty’s teaching, learning, coursework students and graduates.
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Section 2 - Committee Membership

Membership

(4) The members of the FEC are as follows:

  1. Chair (voting)
    1. Associate Dean (Teaching and Learning) (ADT&L)
  2. Members (voting)
    1. Dean of Faculty
    2. At least three (3) academic staff members who represent disciplines or discipline clusters and are well informed about the courses, T&L and student matters from relevant disciplines and Schools, appointed by the Dean or nominee after an expression of interest process
    3. Head(s) of School
    4. Faculty Academic Manager
    5. A Faculty Learning Designer, appointed by the ADT&L or nominee after an expression of interest process
    6. Up to four student members, to include:
      1. One current student in the Faculty who identifies as being Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, appointed by the ADT&L or nominee in consultation with the Oorala Aboriginal Centre, normally through an expression of interest process;
      2. One current student in the Faculty who is from a non-English as first language background, appointed by the ADT&L or nominee, normally through an expression of interest process;
      3. One undergraduate current student, appointed by the Chair after consultation with a relevant student representative body or bodies (may also be a member under previous sections in clause 4vi above); and
      4. One postgraduate coursework current student, appointed by the ADT&L or nominee after consultation with a relevant student representative body or bodies.
  3. Members (non-voting) advice and discussion only:
    1. UNE Library Representative;
    2. Information Technology Directorate Representative;
    3. Student Success Directorate (Information Management) Representative;
    4. Learning and Teaching Transformation Directorate Representative.
  4. In order to achieve or maintain gender balance, where the membership does not include at least two women and two men as voting members, the Chair may appoint one to two additional academic staff members, maintaining as much as possible a balance of representation from Schools in the Faculty.

In attendance

(5) At the discretion of the Chair, the Committee may also invite non-voting individuals as observers to attend individual meetings, provide appropriate expertise as necessary, and contribute to discussion.

Appointment procedure for appointed members

(6) Appointed members of the FEC are appointed when a vacancy occurs.

(7) Appointed members who are employed on fixed-term contracts are required to have sufficient service remaining to fulfil their period of office.

Appointments

(8) Appointment of members will be conducted as per these Terms of Reference and Academic Board’s Standing Orders.

Automatic vacancy by an appointed member

(9) An appointed position becomes vacant automatically if:

  1. the appointed member is absent without prior leave from three consecutive FEC meetings, or
  2. the appointed member loses his/her original qualification for appointment.

Acting ex officio members

(10) An ex officio member of the FEC includes a person who has been appointed on an 'acting' basis to the role. Ex officio members retain the voting rights of the person they replace.   

Terms of office

Ex officio members

(11) The ex officio members will be FEC members while they hold their primary office.

Appointed members

(12) The term of office of an appointed member is two years. Appointed members may stand for re-appointment.

Gender representation objectives

(13) Gender representation shall accord with the Gender Representation on Decision Making and Advisory Committees Policy.

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Section 3 - Functions of the Committee

Functions

(14) The functions of the FEC are across four domains: Approval, Monitoring, Advisory and Communication.

Approval functions

(15) Approval functions of the Committee are prescribed in the Academic Delegations Register:

  1. Approval and amendments to the Faculty’s AQF-compliant units, and Minor Course Amendments;
  2. Approval and amendments to the Faculty’s non-AQF-compliant taught programs;
  3. Approval of Faculty-specific academic policies, procedures and guidelines relating to coursework teaching, learning and student matters, in consultation with the Dean;
  4. Approval of new and amended terms and conditions of Faculty and School academic coursework prizes and scholarships; and
  5. Approval of the credit mapping associated with teaching delivery with third-party providers.

Monitoring functions

(16) In conjunction with Academic Quality Unit, provide monitoring and reporting on the Academic Governance, standards (threshold, Admissions, discipline, Assessment, qualiļ¬cations), Benchmarks and Quality Assurance processes associated with the Faculty’s Teaching and Learning activities, including:

  1. Admissions, enrolment, retention, progression, completion and achievement of the Faculty’s coursework student cohorts;
  2. Recognition of Prior Learning, Assessment, grade distributions, and student appeals.
  3. Outcomes of Board of Examiners meetings;
  4. The coursework student experience, and University and national surveys of student feedback and performance, and graduate outcomes and employment;
  5. Design, development, Learning Outcomes, quality, integrity, standards (threshold, Admissions, discipline, Assessment and qualifications), review, improvement, accreditation and statutory compliance of the Faculty’s coursework programs;
  6. The University’s course and unit monitoring and review schedule;
  7. Reports developed in response to external course and discipline reviews, and implementation of agreed recommendations arising from course and discipline reviews;
  8. Statutory compliance of the Faculty’s taught program and management of relevant risks in the University Academic Risk Register; and
  9. Observance of the delegated authorities in the University’s Academic Delegations Register associated with the Faculty’s governance and management of its courses, teaching and learning and students.

Advisory functions

(17) Provision of advice to the Teaching and Learning Committee and International Advisory Group on:

  1. Development and review of rules, policy, procedures and guidelines to govern the University’s coursework teaching, learning and student activities to ensure the Faculty’s compliance with this policy portfolio;
  2. Quality Assurance requirements associated with teaching delivery at third-party providers (e.g. assessments, moderation);
  3. Academic Governance around the Faculty’s teaching and learning and student activities, including review and approval of terms and conditions of Faculty and School scholarships and prizes;
  4. Teaching quality and curriculum currency, course and unit design and structure, University minimum expectations for teaching and learning, and educational innovations;
  5. The Faculty’s teaching and learning environment, including IT and spaces; and
  6. Outreach, engagement and marketing activities for the Faculty’s teaching and learning activities.

(18) Provision of advice to the Curriculum Committee of Academic Board and International Advisory Group on:

  1. The Faculty course profile and alignment to the University Strategic and Business Plans;
  2. New courses, major amendments and the withdrawal of courses;
  3. Development of articulation arrangements with partnerships including third-party providers; and
  4. Academic Governance, Quality Assurance processes, review and accreditation of the Faculty’s units and courses.

(19) Provision of advice about the terms and conditions of Faculty scholarships and prizes.

(20) Provision of advice to the Dean on matters related to the promotion, quality and management of teaching, learning and coursework programs, the governance and management of coursework student matters and graduate outcomes within the Faculty, and the Faculty’s teaching and learning planning and strategies.

Communication functions

(21) To serve as a forum for the discussion of ideas, issues and opportunities that concern teaching and learning for the academic staff and coursework students’ experience of teaching and learning and their welfare within the Faculty.

(22) Communication of Faculty teaching and learning matters and decisions to the Schools in the Faculty, the Teaching and Learning Committee and Curriculum Committee of Academic Board and other directorates of the University as applicable.

General

(23) The FEC may form working groups from time to time to undertake specific projects and tasks related to their functions. Working groups will report to the Committee.

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Section 4 - Authorities

Authority from Academic Board

(24) The Faculty Education Committee is established under the authority of Academic Board to perform on the Board’s behalf the approval, advisory, monitoring and communication functions set out in the Terms of Reference above and all matters ancillary to those functions.

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Section 5 - Conduct of FEC Business

Reporting

(25) The Chair of the FEC reports to the Dean on operational and management matters.

(26) The Chair of the FEC reports to the Teaching and Learning Committee and Curriculum Committee of Academic Board on matters that fall within the Academic Board's functions.

(27) A copy of the minutes are tabled at the next available meeting of the Curriculum Committee and Teaching and Learning Committee.

Meetings

(28) The FEC will meet as required in order to perform its functions.

Business papers

(29) Unless the Chair directs otherwise, FEC business papers will be distributed to members and official attendees at least seven days prior to the meeting. Additional documents may be tabled in a shorter period as is practicable in the circumstances with prior approval by the Chair.

(30) Public disclosure of business papers, minutes and other information received by the FEC should only be made via the Chair or Secretary to the Committee.

Quorum

(31) At any meeting of the Committee, one half of the full voting membership plus one constitutes a quorum. Where the meeting is not quorate non-attending voting members will be requested to vote via flying minute.

Use of technology

(32) For its business papers, meetings and otherwise to conduct its business the FEC and its members may use technology including telephone, video-conferencing, telepresence, email and internet as arranged by the Chair and/or Secretary to the Committee.

Resolutions

(33) The FEC may pass a resolution by 'flying minute' provided that the resolution has been approved by a simple majority of committee members at the time the resolution is made.

Confirmation of minutes

(34) Draft minutes will normally be circulated to members for comment promptly after each meeting. Next, the minutes (with any necessary changes) will be circulated for adoption by the FEC. The minutes will be finalised and adopted when they have been approved by a majority of the members that were present at the relevant meeting. Alternatively, the minutes may be included in the business papers for the next committee meeting and considered and adopted by the committee at that meeting.

Self-review

(35) Once annually the FEC will devote part of one meeting to the review of its business, policies, practices and procedures over the preceding twelve months.

Secretary to FEC

(36) The Faculty will provide secretarial and administrative support to the FEC.

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Section 6 - Definitions and Interpretations

Definitions

(37) Words and phrases used in this document have the following meanings, unless the context requires otherwise:

  1. Current Student means a person who is at the time a Student and who is enrolled in one or more units.
  2. Major amendment to a course means a change to one-third or more of the course rules, content or curriculum.
  3. Minor amendment to a course means a change to less than one-third of the course rules, content or curriculum.
  4. Student Is an admitted student or an enrolled student, at the relevant time:
    1. an enrolled student is a student who is enrolled in a unit of study at UNE.
    2. an admitted student is a student who has been admitted to a UNE course of study and who is entitled to enrol in a unit of study or who has completed all of the units in the UNE course of study;

Interpretation

(38) This document should be interpreted using the following principles:

  1. This document does not override or otherwise affect:
    1. the Authorities Retained by Council Rule; or
    2. the Functions of the Vice-Chancellor Rule.

(39) This document operates under the authority vested in Academic Board by the University of New England Act 1993 and the University of New England By-law 2005 to establish committees and terms of reference to carry out the business of Academic Board.