Academic Quality Assurance
The Bader International Study Centre (BISC) prides itself on academic excellence across programmes and courses. To monitor and enhance academic quality, a range of internal and external mechanisms of quality assurance are in place.
Internal quality assurance
Here is a brief overview of the internal procedures in place to support and enhance academic quality:
- Cyclical course monitoring by the BISC Educational Standards Committee (click for more information about the operations of this Committee Link to https://www.queensu.ca/bisc/faculty-home/teaching-resources/course-administration)
- Positive collaboration between Queen’s Faculty Offices and the Deputy Academic Director to ensure up-to-date procedures and policies are used at the BISC, relating to academic matters such as academic integrity, academic accommodations and considerations, and academic appeals.
- Appointment of highly skilled instructors using a fair and equitable recruitment and interview process.
- Regular course observations by the Academic Director and other subject experts.
- Termly surveys to monitor the student experience of teaching on every course.
- Annual student satisfaction survey (based on the NUS survey).
- Regular contact with main campus departments to collaborate on changes, or improvements, to course offerings.
- Regular continuing professional development opportunities for instructors, facilitated by the BISC’s faculty professional development coordinator and/or Queen’s Centre for Teaching and Learning link to https://www.queensu.ca/ctl/home
In addition to the internal quality assurance procedures, the BISC willingly engages with two external quality assurance auditors, whose recommendations are summarised within the BISC quality monitoring action plan
Quality Assurance Agency (QAA)
QAA is the independent body entrusted with monitoring and advising on standards and quality in UK higher education. The agency safeguards standards and improves the quality of UK higher education wherever it is delivered around the world, ensuring students receive the higher education they are entitled to expect. Since 2012, the BISC’s academic quality monitoring and enhancement has been annually reviewed by QAA via a combination of self-report mechanisms and QAA site visits.
Following full reviews in 2012, 2017, and 2021, QAA found that the Bader International Study Centre (BISC) met or exceeded UK expectations for quality and standards.
Recent QAA reports are in the public domain and can be accessed here: https://www.qaa.ac.uk/reviewing-higher-education/quality-assurance-reports/Bader-International-Study-Centre
The External Educational Quality Committee (EEQC)
The External Educational Quality Committee (EEQC) visits the BISC each year and advises on a range of academic matters. This Committee is chaired by the Vice Provost (Teaching and Learning) of Queen’s University and includes a senior faculty member from main campus and a UK academic. During the BISC site visit, the EEQC meets with key representatives from various units within the BISC, including academics, non-academic staff, students, and administrators to discuss the quality enhancement initiatives currently underway, and future innovations and strategies. As well as providing suggestions for enhancement, the Committee highlights areas of best practice and opportunity.