Quality Assurance

The Common Core Program is a key part of the undergraduate education, complementing studies in specialist disciplines and other learning opportunities. The high academic quality of the Program is ensured and sustained through the adoption and implementation of the Quality Assurance (QA) Framework. The framework sets out the organizational structure and establishes the role for all parties involved in the QA processes and activities. It covers the full spectrum of course level processes, including planning, approving, delivering, modifying and reviewing a common core course. It also includes the management of program level implementation, monitoring and review. Teaching and learning support activities are instrumental in this framework through promoting and recognizing innovations and excellence in teaching and learning in common core courses.

Quality Statement

This quality statement is adopted by the Committee on Undergraduate Core Education (CUCE) in June 2014 to highlight the commitment of the University to uphold the quality of the Common Core Program and galvanize the support of its stakeholders in its quality assurance work. The quality statement is instrumental in communicating with students, faculty and the university community the beliefs and the ideals embedded in the Program, as well as the intent of the University to manage the Program in high quality.

Roles and Responsibilities in Regard to Quality Assurance

The organizational structure below sets out clearly the roles and responsibilities of the key committees and units of the University in the collective work of quality assurance (QA) and enhancement.

Instructors, Schools and Course Offering Units

The instructors and course offering units have the principal responsibility for the quality of common core courses particularly for their design, delivery and assessment. They develop new common core courses, and recommend changes to approved ones when deemed necessary. These are submitted to the Schools for consideration and endorsement before submitting to the relevant Course Review Panel (CRP), which makes recommendations to the CUCE for approval. Schools are responsible for ensuring that the common core requirements and processes are met and implemented by their course offering units. The Schools establish arrangements to monitor departmental processes for assuring the quality of common core course delivery and for maintaining the academic standard of these courses.

Course Review Panel (CRP)

CRPs are established by the CUCE for reviewing new course proposals, course change applications and delivery of common core courses for their respective common core area. The review aims to ensure that the course design and content meet the general criteria for common core courses and the course and area intended learning outcomes (ILOs). The CRP makes recommendations to the CUCE on courses that could serve the ILOs of the common core area in concern, and advises on the delivery of common core course ILOs and their mapping with the area ILOs.

CRP Terms of Reference, Conduct of Business and Membership

Committee on Undergraduate Core Education (CUCE)

The CUCE advises and makes recommendations to the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Studies on common core policies and regulations, and to monitor and review procedures, quality and performance relating to the university core curriculum in the undergraduate degree programs. It also reports to the Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning Quality on QA arrangements and the evaluation of the implementation of these measures.

CUCE Terms of Reference and Membership List

Senate Committee on Undergraduate Studies (CUS)

The CUS advises and makes recommendations to the Senate on undergraduate policies and regulations, and to monitor and review procedures, quality and performance relating to undergraduate studies. The CUS also considers and approves common core courses approved by the CUCE as undergraduate courses; and receives annual report from the CUCE on the progress of the Common Core Program.

CUS Terms of Reference and Membership List

Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning Quality (CTLQ)

The CTLQ advises Senate on policies and regulations relating to QA; promotes excellence in teaching and learning; and provides University-level monitoring of QA processes. Being part of the university education, UCE team follows the same practice as the Schools, and submits annual reports to the CTLQ on the QA and improvement of the Common Core Program.

CTLQ Terms of Reference and Membership List

Advisory Board for the Undergraduate Common Core Program (ABCCP)

The ABCCP comprises external experts from the academic sector and the community, and provides support and counsel to the CUCE on issues central to the Program, including its academic content, strategy for future development and quality related issues. The Advisory Board members are appointed by the Executive Vice-President and Provost.

ABCCP Terms of Reference and Membership List

External Review Panel (ERP)

The external review aims to ensure that the Common Core Program attains a high academic standard when compared to similar top-ranked programs locally and internationally. An ERP will be set up to perform a holistic review of the Program focusing on the design, content, pedagogy and assessment of common core courses, as well as other teaching and learning related issues as reflected from the performance of students.

Undergraduate Core Education (UCE) Team, Center for Education Innovation

The UCE team is administratively structured under the Center for Education Innovation (CEI). It is headed by the Academic Director, who is concurrently the Director of CEI. The UCE team supports and coordinates the quality assurance activities of the Common Core Program, and provides administrative and executive support to the CUCE in the areas of course administration, quality assurance and promotion of university core education.

The team also works closely with the School of Humanities and Social Science, and the Center for the Arts in developing a comprehensive art program for the University, and promoting arts activities that enrich the artistic culture on campus.

The Common Core Program Quality Assurance Handbook

The QA processes and activities are consolidated into the Common Core Program Quality Assurance Handbook. The Handbook provides a handy reference of the QA processes and activities for faculty and staff, and facilitates the communication of the Common Core mission, goals, objectives, and QA Framework with faculty, staff and internal units. As the QA work continues to develop, revisions will be made where necessary to enhance these processes and activities. All revisions have to be approved by the Committee on Undergraduate Core Education (CUCE), the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Studies (CUS) or the Senate Committee on Teaching and Learning Quality (CTLQ). The Handbook will be updated from time to time to incorporate changes or additions to the QA activities.

CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION
CHAPTER 2MISSION, GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
CHAPTER 3QUALITY ASSURANCE FRAMEWORK
CHAPTER 4 DEVELOPMENT AND APPROVAL OF COMMON CORE COURSES
CHAPTER 5 COMMON CORE COURSE CHANGE AND DELETION
CHAPTER 6 COURSE MONITORING AND REVIEW
CHAPTER 7PROGRAM REVIEW
CHAPTER 8 TEACHING AND LEARNING SUPPORT
APPENDICES  

Sharing Good Practices in Common Core Courses

Good practices in teaching and learning were noted in courses from different areas during the common core course cycle review exercise. Through sharing these with the Schools/Departments/Units and placed on the Common Core Program website, common core instructors may consider these where appropriate for enhancing the teaching and learning effectiveness in their courses.