Introduction

Cyclical institutional review is an element of the broader quality framework for Designated Awarding Bodies (i.e. 7 Irish universities; RCSI; NUI; DIT). Designated Awarding Bodies derive, from law, the authority to make awards and are listed in the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act, 2012 (the 2012 Act). QQI reviews provide an external dimension to an institution’s internal quality assurance processes. Cyclical review is also interdependent on, and integrated with, a wider range of QQI engagements: Quality Assurance Guidelines; each institution’s Quality Assurance Procedures: Annual Institutional Quality Reports (AIQR); and Dialogue Meetings.

This is the third review cycle for Irish Universities. Previous rounds took place in 2004/05 and 2009/12. UCD was last reviewed in 2011.

Review Schedule

The 2018-2023 Review Cycle for Designated Awarding Bodies is:

Institution

ISER

Planning Visit

Main Review Visit

Report

Dublin City University

Q2 2018

Q3 2018

Q4 2018

Q1 2019

Maynooth University

Q2 2018

Q3 2018

Q4 2018

Q1 2019

National University of Ireland, Galway

Q4 2018

Q1 2019

Q2 2019

Q3 2019

University College Dublin

Q2 2019

Q3 2019

Q4 2019

Q1 2020

University of Limerick

Q4 2019

Q1 2020

Q2 2020

Q3 2020

Dublin Institute of Technology

Q2 2020

Q3 2020

Q4 2020

Q1 2021

Trinity College Dublin

Q4 2020

Q1 2021

Q2 2021

Q3 2021

University College Cork

Q2 2021

Q3 2021

Q4 2021

Q1 2022

National University of Ireland

Q4 2021

Q1 2022

Q2 2022

Q3 2022

Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

Q2 2022

Q3 2022

Q4 2022

Q1 2023

Cyclical Review

Cyclical Review evaluates the effectiveness of institution-wide quality assurance procedures for the purposes of establishing, ascertaining, maintaining and enhancing the quality of education, training, research and related services the institution provides. Such reviews are coordinated by Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) and underpinned by the relevant sections of the 2012 Act.

The review process is also in keeping with parts 2 and 3 of the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG 2015) and based on the internationally accepted and recognised approach to reviews, i.e.:

    • The publication of Terms of Reference
    • An Institutional Self-Evaluation Report (ISER)
    • An external assessment and Site Visit by a team of reviewers
    • The publication of a review report including the findings and recommendations
    • A follow-up procedure to review actions taken

The Self Evaluation Process

Self-evaluation is a self-reflective and critical evaluation compiled by UCD, which outlines how effectively it assures and enhances the quality of its teaching, learning and research activities. The report produced is called the Institutional Self-Evaluation Report (the ISER). The ISER will shape the key points of dialogue with the Review Team, the structure of the review visits and the resulting review report. The Institution is required to provide a concise Institutional Self-Evaluation Report (approx. 40 pages/15,000 words).

UCD has established two groups to oversee preparations for institutional review in 2019.  An ISER Steering Group will provide high-level oversight and co-ordination of the development of the ISER, as well as providing advice and guidance to the Academic Council Quality Enhancement Committee (ACQEC), Academic Council, Governing Authority and University Management Team on the preparations for institutional review.  A second group, the ISER Drafting Group will be responsible for the drafting of the various sections of the ISER and will report to the ISER Steering Group. 

Indicative Timeline for the Development of the UCD ISER (as of 25 May 2018)

 

2018

  February-March

  Briefing Paper on Institutional Review: UMT; ACEC; ACQEC

  April-May

  Establish ISER Steering Group

  May

  ISER Steering Group agrees initial structure of ISER & identifies members of the ISER Drafting Group who will lead on drafting
  sections of the ISER.

  ISER Drafting Group established

  June

  Briefing Paper on Institutional Review for GA

  UMT reviews draft ISER Structure and ISER Drafting Group membership

  Briefing for ISER Drafting Group members andISER drafting process begins

  June-September

  ISER drafting process and collation of data and supplementary evidence continues

  September- 
  October

  Briefing Paper on Institutional Review for UPB

  September-
  October

  Communicate update on review process to UCD faculty and staff

  September-
  November

  Consult on Draft ISER

  Update & finalise ISER

  November-
  December

  ISER approved by ACQEC and AC/ACEC

 

2019

  January-
  February+

  ISER endorsed by UMT (for recommendation to GA)

  March

  ISER approved by GA (note: first meeting of new GA)

  May-June

  UCD submits ISER to QQI

  July-
  September

  Review Team Planning Visit

  October-
  December

  Review Team Main Site Visit

 

Previous External Institutional Review Reports