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Service Teaching Policy

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Section 1 - Background and Purpose

(1) For subjects where discipline expertise is located outside the school from which a course emanates, in the interests of recognising discipline expertise, promoting collaborative teaching and developing high quality curriculum, Course Coordinators are required to give due consideration to the involvement of the ‘external’ discipline experts in the development and/or teaching of these subjects.

(2) Service teaching arrangements should be based on consultation and collaboration to produce the best outcomes for students.

(3) This Policy is designed to provide guidance on the principles adopted by the University under which service teaching is conducted. It is intended to ensure good communication between Colleges and Schools, the recognition of discipline and professional expertise and to promote collaboration in the development of high quality curriculum. It recognises that there is a distinction between subject content and the context in which subject matter is presented.

(4) The Policy and Procedure aims for improved communication between academic units of the University in relation to service teaching. This is in recognition that there are issues related to both academic quality and sustainability of academic departments.

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Section 2 - Scope

(5) Applies to:

  1. All campuses
  2. All coursework programs
  3. All academic staff
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Section 3 - Policy Statement

(6) For subjects where discipline expertise is located outside the school from which a course emanates, Course Coordinators are required to give due consideration to the involvement of the ‘external’ discipline experts in the development and/or teaching of these subjects.

(7) Where subjects, core to a course, are either wholly or partly developed and taught under service teaching arrangements, all parties need to be involved in decisions regarding new subject proposals, subject reviews, revisions and subject suspension and closure.

(8) Service teaching arrangements are to be documented in a service teaching agreement between the parties.

(9) Any income accruing to the subject(s) in question will be equitably shared between schools.

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Section 4 - Procedure

Approval, Revisions and Closure of Subjects

(10) All aspects of the lifecycle of individual subjects are approved at College level according to the Subject Lifecycles suite of policy and procedures. Service taught subjects may not be closed without consultation with the service provider.

Approval, Revisions, Suspension and Closure of Courses

(11) All aspects of the lifecycle of courses are referred to the Coursework Committee and the Course Portfolio and Scholarships Committee according to the Course Lifecycles suite of policy and procedures for new course approvals, reviews, revisions, suspension and closure.

New Course Approvals

(12) Where a new course is being developed that includes subjects where there is discipline expertise in another academic unit, that external academic unit should be consulted in the development of the new subject to take advantage of that expertise. The academic unit from which the course emanates must also give due consideration to involving the external academic unit in the teaching of the subject.

(13) The New Course Proposal must detail the consultation that has occurred and the outcomes.

Revisions to Courses Involving Service Teaching Subjects

(14) Where revisions to a course involve changes to or closure of subjects that are taught under service teaching arrangements the external academic unit that is involved in delivering the subject(s) must be consulted.

(15) The course proponent is responsible for ensuring that meetings are held between the academic unit from which the course emanates and the academic unit providing the service, to consider options.

(16) The Course Revision documentation presented to the approvals process must detail the consultation process and the outcomes.

Options for Design and Delivery of Subjects

(17) Members of staff with discipline expertise who are located in another academic unit of the University may be involved through:

  1. Joint subject development teams
  2. Team teaching including the discipline experts
  3. Discipline experts teaching into subjects co-ordinated by staff from the Schools from which the course emanates
  4. Joint appointments between the Schools

Responsibilities of Service Teaching Provider

(18) The provider must ensure that the service taught subject contributes to the learning outcomes of the course in order to fulfil industry, professional, legal and community expectations about the relevance and quality of the course curriculum.

Service Teaching Agreements

(19) A Service Teaching Agreement between the participating academic units is required. It should detail:

  1. the course into which the service teaching has been commissioned
  2. the specific subjects or parts of subjects to be designed and or delivered
  3. start and end dates for the agreement
  4. the number of hours to be taught
  5. the expected number of students
  6. teaching requirements (e.g. classroom teaching, off-campus, off-the-job, workshop, tutorial, mixed delivery such as the provision of lectures to on-campus students as well as off-campus students)
  7. assessment requirements
  8. external discipline responsibilities 
  9. course owner responsibilities 
  10. the use of materials developed for this course including any future use
  11. responsibility for curriculum design and teaching
  12. contribution of each service subject to course learning outcomes
  13. resource agreements, including:
    1. payment/funding/budget allocation or other financial arrangements
    2. arrangements for the transfer of EFTSU to the school/program that employs the delivering staff based on the percentage contribution to teaching
    3. timetable arrangements, including any requirement for specialized resources such as laboratory equipment, IT or studio space.
  14. the requirement for and processes for communication and negotiation of any changes to the service teaching arrangements
  15. mechanisms for the evaluation of teaching and review of the service teaching agreement;
  16. staff who will do the teaching and assessment; and
  17. details of key performance indicators for the agreement (for example SFS, SFT, progression rates, timely return of assessment).

(20) The Service Agreement should be signed off by all parties involved (Course Coordinators and Heads of School).

Financial Arrangements for Service Teaching

(21) Academic units are to ensure an equitable distribution of the funding accruing to subjects that involve service teaching whether this is a part or the whole of the subject. This will normally be based on the percentage contribution to teaching in the subject.

Joint Appointments

(22) Where the academic units determine that a joint appointment is the best way of managing these subjects, the salary, on costs and any non-salary components will be shared proportionately between the departments.

Dispute Resolution

(23) Where a dispute arises between the course owner and the service teaching provider related to the service taught subjects (which may include subject closure, unacceptable standards of teaching or curriculum content, revisions to courses or subjects) the following processes should be followed:

  1. In the first instance through informal discussion between the parties, at subject, course or School level.
  2. If unresolved at this level Heads of School should be invited to participate in discussions
  3. Outcomes of either of these processes should include documented proposed improvements and strategies for their achievement 
  4. Following this if, after the next delivery of the subject, the dispute has still not been resolved satisfactorily, the Associate Pro Vice-Chancellors (Coursework) may assume leadership in resolving the issues
  5. In the event of the matter not being resolved at this level the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) will be given all documentation, meet with the concerned parties, and then provide a final decision on the matter. The final decision may be cessation of the service teaching arrangement.
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Section 5 - Definitions

(24) For the purpose of this Policy and Procedure:

  1. Service Teaching: Development and/or teaching of subject(s) or parts of subjects by discipline experts into courses located in schools outside their own. Service teaching may be within a College or between Colleges. The definition does not include electives or guest lectures.
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Section 6 - Stakeholders

Responsibility for implementation – College Pro Vice-Chancellors; Heads of School.
Responsibility for monitoring implementation and compliance – Education Committee; Senior Executive Group.