Further to the above discussion the Panel was interested to learn how LCA Mauritius staff envisaged the ‘buddy’ system functioning with LCA London staff in terms of developing assessment tasks and the first marking of assessments. The Proposal Team informed the Panel that a ‘buddy’ system was already in place for the ACCA courses. LCA London staff visited LCA Mauritius on a six monthly basis to share knowledge and the arrangement was considered to be working effectively. LCA Mauritius academic staff informed the Panel that they were confident that they were appropriately experienced and qualified to undertake the first marking of assessments locally. The Panel also emphasised the importance of ensuring that LCA Mauritius was a free standing academic organisation and that it was the Panel’s firm view that assessments were first marked locally to prevent any potential suggestion that the collaborative partnership constituted a serial franchise arrangement. The Panel therefore agreed to recommend the full involvement of LCA Mauritius academic staff in the internal marking and moderation of all items of summative assessment [see Recommendation 2.6.1]. It was, however, noted that staff development would be necessary to increase staff awareness of Anglia Ruskin assessment processes and procedures but that this was required as a condition of Institutional Approval.
5.3The Panel discussed examination arrangements with the Proposal Team and enquired whether there would be any instances where the timing of examinations at LCA London and LCA Mauritius would differ. The Proposal Team confirmed that all examinations would be held at the same time at both locations to prevent any possible breaches of examination security. The Proposal Team informed the Panel that the involvement of the TEC in the examination process was currently unclear and the subject of ongoing discussions. The Panel learned that examinations for degrees currently offered in Mauritius by overseas institutions were all held at the Mauritius Examination Syndicate. The Panel expressed reservations about such an arrangement and its potential to slow down the assessment process. Such a delay could potentially prevent students’ marks being submitted on time to the Anglia Ruskin DAP for consideration and therefore affect student progression. Due to the additional complexity involved it was also the view of the Panel that sending examination papers to the TEC would adversely affect the smooth running of the assessment process. It was agreed that further consideration would need to be given to examination arrangements following discussions with the TEC.
5.4The Panel enquired as to whether LCA Mauritius currently had a system in place to ensure the security of examination papers. The Proposal Team informed the Panel that it was currently planned to hold examination papers at Ernst & Young’s offices in Port Louis to be collected on the day of the examination, thereby ensuring their security. Whilst the Panel was reassured that the issue had been considered it determined that the security of examination papers was vital to the integrity of the assessment process. The Panel therefore agreed to set a condition that required LCA Mauritius and AIBS to agree a process for the setting, despatch and secure storage of examination papers and to identify the post and current post-holder with responsibility for each stage of the process [see Condition 2.5.3].
STAFFING, LEARNING RESOURCES AND STUDENT SUPPORT
The Panel sought clarification of the academic staff employed at LCA Mauritius on a part-time basis and who would be combining teaching of ACCA courses with Anglia Ruskin pathways. The Panel also enquired as to how much time these staff would devote to the teaching of Anglia Ruskin pathways and whether there were any full-time members of staff. The Proposal Team responded that all academic staff, with the exception of the Head of Administration, were currently part-time. LCA Mauritius was, however, committed to recruiting additional academic staff to teach ACCA courses and the Anglia Ruskin pathways. The Proposal Team informed the Panel that the Head of Administration, LCA London, was due to interview some additional academic staff during the current week and that LCA Mauritius would be planning staff workloads against modules immediately. It was
Quality Assurance Division8Confirmed