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Cyclical Review of Hibernia College - An Institutional Review Policy

Section 1 - Introduction


(1) This policy sets out the principles and purposes surrounding the periodic review of Hibernia College and its activities, specifically the effectiveness of its quality assurance policies and procedures. 
This is known as a Cyclical Review and is frequently referred to as an Institutional Review. 


To whom does the policy apply?

(2) This policy applies to all members of the College.

In what situations does the policy apply?

(3) The aim of a review is to provide an independent review of the College’s internal quality assurance procedures. 

Who is responsible for implementing the policy?

(4) The Registrar is responsible for the implementation of this procedure.

(5) The Quality Assurance and Enhancement Manager supports the Registrar.

(6) The Academic Board provides oversight for the process, approves submissions, reviews terms of reference and reviews self-evaluation reports. 


(7) Cyclical Review 

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Section 2 - Context

Legal and Regulatory Context

QQI Guidelines on Cyclical Review

(8) QQI has five specific measurable purposes for its cyclical reviews set out in the Policy for Cyclical Review of Higher Education Institutions, which are: 

  1. To encourage a QA culture and the enhancement of the student learning environment and experience within institutions
  2. To provide feedback to institutions about institution-wide quality and the impact of mission, strategy, governance, and management on quality and the overall effectiveness of their quality assurance
  3. To improve public confidence in the quality of institutions by promoting transparency and public awareness
  4. To support systems-level improvement of the quality of higher education
  5. To facilitate quality enhancement by using evidence-based, objective methods and advice

European Standards and Guidelines

(9) This policy has been designed with regard to the European Standards and Guidelines.

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Section 3 - Policy Statements 

Part A - Objectives for Cyclical Review

(10) These objectives are largely extracted from QQI’s Policy for Cyclical Review of Higher Education Institutions

  1. To encourage a quality culture and the enhancement of the student learning environment and experience by:
    1. Emphasising the student and the student learning experience in reviews
    2. Providing a source of evidence of areas for improvement and areas for revision of policy and change and basing follow-up upon them
    3. Exploring innovative and effective practices and procedures
    4. Exploring quality as well as quality assurance within the College
    5. Contributing to thematic reviews
  2. To provide feedback to the College about College-wide quality and the impact of mission, strategy, governance and management on quality and the overall effectiveness of their quality assurance by: 
    1. Emphasising the ownership of quality and quality assurance within the College as a whole
    2. Pitching the review at a comprehensive College-wide level
    3. Evaluating compliance with legislation, policy and standards
    4. Evaluating relative equivalence with College-identified benchmarks and metrics
    5. Emphasising the improvement of quality assurance procedures
  3. To improve public confidence in the quality of the College by promoting transparency and public awareness by:
    1. Adhering to purposes, criteria and outcomes that are clear and transparent
    2. Publishing a cyclical review cycle
    3. Publishing terms of reference
    4. Publishing the reports and outcomes of reviews in accessible locations and formats for different audiences
    5. Publishing brief, easy-to-read College quality profiles
    6. Evaluating, as part of the review, College reporting on quality and quality assurance to ensure that it is transparent and accessible
  4. To contribute to systems-level improvement within higher education of the quality of: 
    1. Publication of periodic synoptic reports
    2. Demonstrating that there is sufficient consistency in approach with other higher education institutions with whom Hibernia College benchmarks itself to allow for comparability and shared learning
    3. Publishing institutional quality profiles
  5. To encourage quality by using evidence-based, objective methods and advice:
    1. Using the expertise of international, national and student peer reviewers who are independent of the institution
    2. Ensuring that findings are based on stated evidence
    3. Facilitating the identification of metrics and benchmarks for quality relevant to Hibernia College’s mission and context
    4. Promoting the identification and dissemination of examples of good practice and innovation