The University of Aberdeen has been praised for its relationships between staff and students, the role of industry in the development of teaching, and the consolidation of student support services.
In its academic quality audit report on the University of Aberdeen, the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education commended the University for its ‘commitment of academic and academic-related staff to the quality assurance and enhancement framework’.
The University was also commended by the Agency, which evaluates and regulates the Higher Education sector, for ‘the effective communication of strategic aims and new directions throughout the whole institution’.
The five-strong audit team visited the University from 6-8 May. They held a number of meetings with a broad cross-section of members of the University community and reviewed a number of documents supplied by the University, including those on the World Wide Web site, the published reports of Teaching Quality Assessments (TQAs) conducted by the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council (SHEFC) and a selection of University publications.
The report concluded that since its last institutional audit in 1991, the University had implemented a number of significant changes to its framework for assuring quality and academic standards. It states:
“In taking forward these developments, the University has engaged effectively with its staff and students to create a very positive ethos, supportive of the assurance of quality and standards, with the principal aspects of the University’s strategy widely known and supported in the University community and operated effectively.”
It goes on to say that the gathering and dissemination of information required for monitoring academic standards is gathered in a ‘systematic and robust manner’, and that the University’s own analysis of the information on teaching and learning performance enables it to ensure effective management of quality of provision of teaching and academic standards.
“There are acknowledged areas for further development in which the University has already made progress. These areas include the strengthening of mechanisms for the identification and sharing of good practice throughout the University, and the continuing development of more explicit frameworks for the identification of academic standards through further work on objectives and learning outcomes.”
Senior Vice Principal Professor Ian Macdonald said: “This is an outstanding report which fully endorses the quality of the University’s teaching policies. It is a guarantee to all prospective students that they will receive excellent teaching at Aberdeen University.”