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Queries related to quality review can be directed to the UCD Quality Office:

Room 118B
UCD Tierney Building
University College Dublin
Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland

Ph. +353 1 716 1036
qualityassurance.office@ucd.ie

 

THE QUALITY REVIEW PROCESS

University Quality Review
Quality Review Process Flowchart 
Quality Review Document Flowchart
Framework for Quality Assurance in Irish Higher Education
Guiding Principles for Review
Composition of UCD Review Groups
Examples of good practice identified in UCD Quality Review Reports
UCD Thematic Review

University Quality Review

Quality review, which is essentially a developmental process, is carried out in academic, administrative and service units. Periodically, reviews will also be undertaken of cross-College structures, such as major Programmes, Graduate School Boards and Research Institutes. From time to time, thematic reviews of University-wide issues (e.g. first year student experience; staff/student consultation mechanisms) will also be carried out. Typically the review model comprises four key elements:

  • Preparation of a Self-assessment Report
  • A site visit by a Review Group that includes internal (UCD) and external experts, both national and international
  • Preparation of a Review Group Report
  • Agreement of an action plan to effect improvement

The current review schedule is available on the Review Schedule page.

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Guiding Principles for Review

It is important to emphasise certain key guiding values and principles for review:
  1. Creating the agenda for quality by recognising quality as concerned with “fitness-for-purpose” in a unique and innovative University;
  2. Recognition that quality is the professional responsibility of each individual and team;
  3. The best way to effect quality assurance, quality improvement and accountability is through continuous quality improvement based on collaboration and the development of a learning organisation;
  4. A commitment to develop an overarching policy in order to ensure comparable treatment in all areas of the University, while retaining a degree of flexibility to respond to particular contexts as and when they arise;
  5. The value of an open and thoughtful approach to quality informed by international research and scholarship;
  6. A planned and systematic approach to quality including, ensuring that the results of monitoring and review are fed back in order to effect improvement;
  7. Recognition that both self-reflection and external points of reference provide valuable perspectives for further reflection and action;
  8. The strategic directions of the University are of central importance for all reviews;
  9. Benchmarking leading to improvement is strongly encouraged, as is input from stakeholders;
  10. Reviews should consider the effectiveness of processes and procedures, particularly as they are demonstrated through outcomes;
  11. The importance and relevance of external professional and statutory accreditation reviews is acknowledged. Duplication is minimised by identifying those areas of professional and statutory accreditation reviews that address the guidance and requirements for UCD review.

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Composition of UCD Review Groups

The composition of Review Groups are selected independently of the unit under review. A typical Review Group is composed of two internal UCD staff - again, independent of the unit under review; and two or three external experts in the discipline/specialism under review*. All Review Group members contribute to drafting the Review Group Report including the identification of recommendations for further improvement. The Review Group Report should be signed-off by all Group members.

(*Note: this number may vary, as appropriate, to reflect the size and diversity of the unit under review, having regard to the principle that the number of internal UCD members shall not exceed the number of external members)

Criteria to be considered when nominating external Review Group members

Criteria

  • Gender representation
  • Depth of reviewer expertise within the subject area
  • Comfort in speaking and report-writing in the English language
  • Extent of management experience in comparable units and/or at institutional level
  • Affiliation with world-class units and institution(s)
  • Representation of the breadth of knowledge 'strands' within the subject area
  • External profile within the subject area - experience representing the discipline on groups or within agencies at national or international levels

Exclusions

  • Recent role as Subject External Examiner within UCD
  • Conflict of interest regarding any relationship with the unit or associated staff
  • Current partner in research collaborations with the unit or associated staff

Additionally

  • Any relationship the unit has with potential nominees must be declared by Head of unit prior to selection of Review Group

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Good Practice Identified in UCD Quality Review Reports

Examples of innovative and/or good practice are identified in UCD Quality Review Reports. The relevant reports are available to download below. This report is updated bi-annually.

 

Download this file Examples of Positive Practice Identified in UCD Quality Review Reports 2015-16
Download this file Examples of Good Practice Identified in UCD Quality Review Reports 2014-15
Download this file Examples of Good Practice Identified in UCD Quality Review Reports 2013-14
Download this file Examples of Good Practice Identified in UCD Quality Reports 2012-13
Download this file  Examples of Good Practice Identified in UCD Quality Review Reports 2010-2012  
   Good Practice identified in University Quality Review Reports 2009-2010
   Good Practice identified in University Quality Review Reports 2007-2009 

 

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