15 November 2018

Summary from the November Board

You can download this one page summary document here

Digital Story

Caitlin Russell, Sports Business Management graduate and Shaping Futures Intern, shared her short digital story – with a focus on finding and undertaking a suitable placement, and the opportunities it led to.

Faculty Shaping Futures Board Updates

The board received updates from all four faculty boards. A flavour of the discussion items are provided below

  • SSH The detailed start of year report on student characteristics was welcomed as it allowed for more targeted conversations and support. This information is being considered alongside the development of learning analytics and hopefully it could be supplied earlier in future years helping to shape seminar groups and allocating academic advisers.
  • STA Identified the need for a BME lead within departments to take oversight and act as a Champion. Briefed on Graduate Outcomes so now looking strategically at what can done to enhance outcomes in September. Agreed that each module should have mid-module student feedback.
  • HWB Revisited Shaping Futures work streams that the faculty are currently involved in. A graduate intern is developing a toolkit around participatory methods to involve and engage students in fair marking and feedback. Faculty SF and LLEG boards are due to meet to discuss how best to expand portfolio whilst maintaining excellence.
  • SBS Reviewed SBS NSS and PTES results. The School would be in favour of an electronic solution for attendance monitoring due to how resource hungry and time demanding the current manual process is. There is concern about the overwhelming use of e-mail for student communication and the desire to agree and embed a streamlined approach.

Access and Participation plan update

Following submission of the plan in May, which the Office for Students have approved – the next phase is to ensure that monies within faculty budgets for access and participation (A&P) plans are aligned to address the biggest gaps in the faculty. The intention going forward is to have a much more evidence based and strategic approach to how this funding is being spent.

The Board supported the approach to more widely communicate our A&P ambitions throughout the University. Work will take place with faculties from December to implement the proposals in the update paper presented, and key messages relating to analysis of performance and devising actions to address any weaknesses identified will be cascaded through faculty and department structures as appropriate.

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)

We are currently considering when to enter our Provider TEF submission – either in January 2019 or to enter it at the same time as Subject TEF in the academic year 2020/21.

The pilots ‘Model A’ and ‘Model B’ that were being undertaken by Subject TEF have both been rejected. A revised set of metrics have been announced. The key changes to the metrics are

  • Increased number of NSS measures, from 3 to 5, with the addition of learning resources and student voice
  • The weighting for non-continuation has doubled
  • DHLE general employment data has been replaced with LEO data
  • Average salary will also be considered as a metric (this will not take into account geographical weightings)
  • The panel will also receive data relating to grade inflation and differential attainment

The changes to the metrics place the University in a stronger positon to achieve a gold rating.

Preparations for a Subject TEF pilot are being led by Liz Smart who is currently liaising with faculties to identify each subject lead. It is anticipated that ADADs will chair the pilot subject TEF panels. Initial training is due to take place for subject leads in November.


Ashley Hopps, Head of Space Resources & Timetabling provided an update on the 17/18 timetabling cycle. A number of improvements were seen in relation to the co-location/zoning of departments and reductions in the use of external space. The team are keen to continue working collaboratively with stakeholders on the many challenges and complexities of timetabling, the large number of change requests received and being conscious of the impact on student experience (and NSS).  Timetabling reports into both Shaping Futures and Building a Great University boards.

You can download this as a one page summary document here