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We have continued to expand our partnerships with overseas quality agencies and governments to build understanding, trust and confidence in UK higher education.

Partnership meetings have been held with existing partner quality agencies in the People's Republic of China, United Arab Emirate, Japan, Ireland, Taiwan, Indonesia, and Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. Discussions have also been held with potential new partner agencies in Nigeria, Kuwait, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Ukraine, Egypt, People's Republic of China, Canada, Peru, and Pakistan.

Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) are currently being developed for new partnerships, where there are concrete outcomes that can be achieved for mutual benefit for HEIs in both countries. Typically, MoUs involve mutual sharing of information about quality and standards activities, policies, resources, UK HEIs, and how UK higher education is quality assured. We also work with the agencies to bring key intelligence back to the UK sector from overseas. In October, QAA signed a new MOU with the Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA), the federal quality agency in the United Arab Emirates, with whom we collaborate on a number of matters including branch campuses, accreditation and academic integrity. 

QAA also participated at the Quality Beyond Boundaries Group meeting in Autumn 2020, focused on cross-border collaboration, and invited representatives from our member institutions to share practice and discuss opportunities and challenges with colleagues from key sending and receiving transnational education (TNE) countries. In addition, we have spoken at multiple cross-border conferences and events. Our consultation on the new approach to the review of TNE involved extensive engagement with overseas quality agencies and stakeholders of UK TNE.

QAA is a global brand. It is seen as the sector leading quality organisation within the UK, has a global reach, global recognition. QAA doesn’t simply look to the UK in terms of its reach in relation to quality assurance and best practice, but also influences other countries and other quality assurance arrangements globally, and so as an institution aligning yourself with QAA you can be assured that you’re aligning yourself with best practice in relation to quality assurance.

Professor Michael Draper
Director of Swansea Academy of Inclusivity and Learner Success, Swansea University