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Podcast transcript: Launch event for Chapters B3 and B5 of the Quality Code 


DN: Daniel Nicholls
GW: Gail Wilson

DN: Hello there, and welcome to another QAA podcast. This is Daniel Nicholls of the Quality Assurance Agency. Today's podcast is looking at a joint even that we have got coming up on 7 November, and this is for Chapter B3: Learning and Teaching and Chapter B5: Student Engagement; and it is looking a little at the cross-themes that are running across the Quality Code. Today I am joined by Gail Wilson, who is Development Officer at the Quality Assurance Agency. Hello Gail.

GW: Hello.

DN: Hello. I wonder if you could help myself and the listeners with a number of questions that we have got?  So the first question we have got today is, what is this B3/B5 joint event? What does it aim to achieve, and could you tell me how this is maybe different from some of the consultation events we have run in the past?

GW: Okay, well the event is concentrating, like you said, on two Chapters - B3 and B5. These Chapters have both been quite recently published, so Chapter B5 which is around Student Engagement was actually published last June, and B3: Learning and Teaching has just been published at the end of September. They are both new Chapters of the Quality Code and they both have a lot in common in terms of talking about the partnership approach and higher education providers working in partnership with their students, so obviously B3: Learning and Teaching is talking about that approach in regards to students' individual learning and Chapter B5: Student Engagement is talking more about students being involved in quality assurance processes and enhancement, but both actually have this common theme of partnership working. 

In terms of the event itself, it is actually a new type of event and something that we are trying out - a new sort of format. So we have run a lot of consultation events over the last year, getting people's feedback on Chapters as they have been developed, and this event has actually got quite a different focus; it is about two Chapters that have already been published so it is not a consultation event, and what we are aiming to do is to try and help people understand the Chapters a little bit better. 

We are going to be talking about some of the themes that have come up and some of the feedback from the consultation process, but the main focus of the event is really about sharing best practise and helping higher education providers to use these Chapters in practice for enhancement purposes. 

DN: Oh, right! Sounds quite a different type of event, quite innovative as well, and hopefully perhaps it could be something that could be rolled out?

GW: Yeah, I hope so; we are hoping it is really going to be a space for people to share ideas and discuss some of the issues of the Chapters in more detail.

DN: So, you mention the event is quite different to those that have gone before, I mean, how is it going to work in practice; what should people expect when they turn up on the day?

GW: Okay, so we have got a couple of keynote speakers that are going to talk about some of the key themes of the Chapters that cut across both of them. Mary Stewart, VC of Lincoln, is going to be speaking as well as one of our student reviewers, Charlotte Richer, and they are going to talk about the two Chapters and give us quite a nice overview. 

We are then going to hear back from the specialist writer, Iain Giles, who was involved with both Chapters, as well as staff from QAA talking about the consultation process, how that worked, looking at some facts and figures, as well as some of the issues that came out of the consultation for both Chapters, and how we sort of address these in the QAA, and how that has been reflected in the final Chapters. 

Then the afternoon is going to be really focused on the sharing of good practice, so we are going to have a round-table, global café-style discussion forum, which is quite a new - well it's not a new idea, but it is something that we are trying out in QAA. But it is going to be shaped by people there on the day, so people can put forward discussion topics that they want to see, and people will be rotating round different tables and talking really about the Chapters in practice, with a particular focus on different student personas, especially those that are sometimes thought of as particularly had to reach or hard to engage - so basically non-traditional students that don't fit into that clichéd full-time undergrad student studying full-time on-campus. 

And then we are going to round off the day with a panel discussion between some of our advisory group members from B3 and B5, and really sort of sum up the day, talking about how those Chapters are going to work in practice.

DN: Sounds a great day! If listeners are listening out there and they think, unfortunately I can't attend - obviously we understand it is fully booked - how can they find out more about the event or is there going to be any outcomes published?

GW: Yes, unfortunately the event is now fully booked, it has been quite popular, but because the event is very much focused on good practice we are going to try and capture as much as we can during the day in terms of what is coming out of the tabled discussions and the panel and things like that, so we are going to collect as much information as we can and publish that after the event. There will be a web page with the resources and links that people can go to, so keep your eyes open for that.

DN: Okay, well thank you, Gail, I look forward to it. Thank you once again.

GW: Brilliant, thank you.

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