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Background

The 2018 version of the Quality Code was developed by QAA on behalf of the UK Standing Committee for Quality Assessment (UKSCQA), in consultation with the higher education sector. It was designed to protect the public and student interest, and champion UK higher education's world-leading reputation for quality.


Changes to the regulatory framework in England provide an opportunity for the sector to take ownership of the future scope and structure of the Quality Code to ensure it is a valuable aid to institutional evaluation and enhancement.

What are we doing to review the Quality Code?

In July 2022, we agreed with the UKSCQA that the time was right to hold a UK sector-wide conversation about the future scope and structure of the Quality Code.


To ensure it remains useful to the sector, we are embarking on a detailed set of conversations with our members, and other groups, to understand how they would like it to evolve. This work is undertaken in our capacity as a Membership organisation.


We are putting in place a series of roundtable discussions, sharing ideas with members through our existing networks and events, and also engaging directly with other sector bodies and groupings (such as Universities UK, GuildHE, Quality Strategy Network, Academic Registrars Council and related groups in the UK nations).


We will start by considering the ‘central’ part of the Quality Code (currently known as the Expectations and Core/Common practices), thinking about how that should be structured and what its scope should be, before considering a realistic timetable for reviewing the Advice and Guidance. This work needs to be cognisant of how the Quality Code is used across the UK, especially in those nations where it underpins external review arrangements.

How should the Quality Code develop?

From our current work and discussions to date, we think it would be helpful for the next iteration of the Quality Code to:


  • identify practice beyond the baseline, what does good or even excellent practice look like
  • be more explicit about the focus institutions have on outcomes, in addition to providing information about the kinds of processes and practices that will deliver those outcomes
  • continue to be UK-wide, so it should not be specific to the quality framework in any one nation
  • ensure it continues to be widely respected internationally, so it should be explicit about how it links to other frameworks such as the European Standards and Guidelines (ESG).

Join the conversations

The review provides an opportunity for the sector to take ownership of the scope and structure of the Quality Code to ensure it is a valuable aid to institutional evaluation and enhancement.


‘The future scope and direction of the Quality Code’ roundtable events

We are holding interactive online discussions for you to share your views. You can now register for your preferred date via our event booking site:

These workshops are open to all staff and students who wish to contribute to the discussions.


Member Network Conference

The outcomes of the online discussions will be shared during our in-person Member Network Conference on 20 April - members can register via our event booking site.

Networks

Members can also hear updates and join the conversations at the following network meetings:

We have already held discussions with our College HE, Independent and Specialist provider, PSRB and student networks.