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External Examining

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The Academic Development & Diversity (ADD) Team offer two External Examining (EE) professional development programmes and are a collaboration between college, staff and ADD.

 

Delivery team

These professional development programmes are a collaboration between college, staff and ADD. If you have any questions about External Examining development, please email the delivery team via Academic Development & Diversity

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Dr Helen Kay

Senior Lecturer Academic Diversity & Inclusion in Academic Development & Diversity (ADD).  Read Helen’s staff profile

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Christine O’Leary

Principal Lecturer and Subject Group Leader for Languages and Cultures Subject Area in the College of Business, Technology and Engineering (BTE), Department of Management.  Read Christine’s staff profile

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John Freeman

Principal Lecturer, RMN, MA, PG Dip, SFHEA, in the College of Health, Wellbeing and Life Sciences (HWLS), Department of Nursing and Midwifery.  Read John’s staff profile

Claire Ketnor

Principal Lecturer, BSc (Hons), PGCertHE, MSc, PhD, SFHEA, MIMA in the College of Business, Technology and Engineering (BTE), Department of Engineering and Maths.  Read Claire’s staff profile.

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Becoming an EE, what does it involve?

External expertise: External experts are individuals who are not directly involved with a course and who can provide independent and impartial comment and input to a course design, its management, monitoring, evaluation, and review. External experts will provide a level of independence that is important in decision-making and ensuring that quality and standards are met.

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1.    Becoming an External Examiner (EE) – workshop

This is a half-day workshop that explores the steps involved in securing an EE role and an outline of the role requirements. The workshop is co-delivered by college staff who are experienced EEs and who provide their perspective on the role.

Our interactive workshops are designed for staff who have not done External Examining before and would like to find out more.  The workshops will cover:

  • What institutions will be looking for in the appointment of EEs.
  • How to find out about EE opportunities and the application process.
  • Insider views of the EE role in practice and will include inputs from experienced EEs at Hallam, and an institutional perspective from Academic Quality and Standards.
  • How to maximise your contribution as an EE.
  • You will have the opportunity to receive peer feedback on your profile in relation to a typical call for an EE.
  • You will also participate in a mock assessment board.

Prior to attending one of our workshop activities

  • Prepare and complete a brief Expression of Interest(EoI) for a hypothetical External Examining appointment and
  • Bring three copies of your EoL to the workshop – you do not need to bring a CV.

During the workshop you will receive Peer Feedback on your EoI. We don’t expect you to have a polished text – bullet points are fine: the purpose is to get feedback on your profile in relation to external examining. The exercise will help you to think about the range of experience you have that will be valuable and valued in an External Examining role.

In addition, we’ll ask you to view a short video – External Examining Institutional Perspective, presented by Leopold Green, Head of Quality AQS – June 2019.

Your pre-session activities will take about 30 minutes and will be circulated to you upon booking your place on a workshop.  These activities will form part of a discussion in the session.

The next workshop will be held on TBC.

Email the ADD Team to reserve your place or make enquiries.

Further information

Visit the UK Quality Code in Higher Education (QAA) web pages:

Visit the Advance HE web pages:

Examples of External Examiner Reports:

External Examiners Forum: the External Examiners JISCM@il is a useful discussion forum and provides a list of external examiner vacancies.

External Examining in SHU:

Is the role the same for Undergraduate and Postgraduate External Examiners and PhD Examiners?

The role is the same for Undergraduate and Postgraduate taught courses. More information on Research Degree Examining can be found on the Doctoral School page.

Once you’ve secured an EE role

You should have a discussion with your line manager to let them know you are intending to apply for an External Examiner role(s).  You should also let them know when you have secured an appointment and then record your external examining role(s) on Core Portal as follows:

  • Click on ‘My Profile’ (your photo)
  • Select ‘Other Information’ on the drop-down list, followed by ‘External Examiners of Courses’.
  • Click on the blue ‘ADD’ button in the top right-hand corner to update the institution, subject area, tenure, and course type for your external examiner role. (Please note for non-UK institutions, select ‘Other – not listed/not known’ from the External Institution drop down list)

It’s simple to do and should only take a couple of minutes. You only need to record details of taught courses where you are an external examiner.

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2. External Examining – Advance HE Professional Development Course.

Sheffield Hallam, in collaboration with Advance HE, provides a nationally accredited professional development course for external examiners.  

The professional development course (PDC) was developed by Advance HE in partnership with Office for Students as part of the degree standards project on external examining.  

The course aims to enable aspiring, new or experienced examiners to: 

  • Understand the role of the external examiner as articulated in the UK Quality Code for Higher education and be confident to undertake it. 
  • Develop a deeper understanding of the nature of academic standards and professional judgement and explore the implications for external examining. 
  • Use evidence informed approaches to contribute to impartial, transparent judgements on academic standards and the enhancement of student learning 

The course comprises two half day online interactive webinars together with some prior online activities and reading, as follows: 

  • Part One: Online activities and reading, which normally take 3-5 hours to complete (Advance HE’s Virtual Learning Environment). 
  • Part Two: Two synchronous webinars over two half-days. 

The course is designed as a coherent whole aimed to enable participants to meet the learning outcomes. Consequently, the course is only available to those who can commit to all elements of the course. Participants receive a certificate from Advance HE and their names will on the Advance HE’s list of those who have completed the external examiner professional development course.  

The next workshop will be held on TBC.

Email the ADD Team to reserve your place or make enquiries.

 

Updating your EE status

You can now record your External Examining roles on Core Portal. 

Being an external examiner is an important means of ensuring academic standards across the sector and provides valuable insights into academic practices at other institutions.  Why are we asking you to record this information? The QAA requires universities to keep a record of academic staff undertaking external examining roles at other institutions. This information will also enable us to target professional development opportunities to support you in your role, e.g. the Degree Standards Project

To add your information, log on to Core Portal, click on ‘My Profile’ (your photo), then select ‘Other Information’ on the drop down list, followed by ‘External Examiners of Courses’. Click on the blue ‘ADD’ button in the top right hand corner to update the institution, subject area, tenure and course type for your external examiner role. It’s simple to do and should only take a couple of minutes.  You only need to record details of taught courses where you are an external examiner. If you have any queries, please email the Academic Development & Diversity team.

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Last updated: 5th September 2022 NB