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Course Advisory Groups Procedure
1. Purpose:
  1. This document sets out the University's procedures for the determination and establishment of course advisory groups (CAGs), the appointment of CAG members and a description of their duties.
  2. Course Advisory Groups ensure that the University seeks, receives and acts on regular, valid and reliable feedback from stakeholders on the quality and appropriateness of its courses.
2. Scope:
  1. These procedures apply to undergraduate and postgraduate coursework courses. Advisory groups are expected to consider relationships with other courses, including postgraduate research courses, as part of their role.
  2. These procedures support the implementation of the Course Advisory Groups Policy.
3. Procedure:
  1. Deans, in consultation with their associate dean (education), heads of discipline and course conveners, will determine and establish course advisory groups in the faculty. 
  2. Terms of reference of advisory groups will cover core functions set out in Principle 3.5 of the Course Advisory Group Policy document. While wording may change to suit the group, the range of functions should be covered. 
  3. As a minimum, course advisory groups will include the following stakeholders:
    • course convener(s) and relevant head(s) of discipline
    • employers
    • professional practitioners or representatives from relevant professional associations, industries and/or disciplines
    • graduates of the course working in the field
    • current students, and
    • academic staff member teaching a similar course at another university. 
  4. Groups may also include representatives from partner organisations and/or institutions with credit transfer agreements, staff from other faculties with an interest in the course (such as conveners of double degrees), administrative staff involved in course management, government departments or other major employer groups, University services such as Study Skills and Learning and Teaching, and others with a stake in the course.
  5. The majority of members of a course advisory group would normally be external to the University. Groups should be chaired by external members where possible.
  6. Where appropriate members should be appointed for a definite term and may be reappointed.
  7. Course advisory groups will meet at least once a year. Twice a year is recommended. Formal minutes will be kept as part of University records.
  8. Proponents of new courses are asked to nominate membership of an ongoing advisory group in the course approval process. An existing course advisory group should be consulted on new course development where a suitable group exists.
  9. Advisory groups should be involved in or informed of professional accreditation and reaccreditation processes where courses are professionally accredited or recognised.
  10. Advisory groups are expected to monitor and advise on the University’s signature themes (work-integrated learning; interdisciplinary study; research-led education; intercultural student and staff capability; and student access, choice and flexibility) in the context of the course.
  11. It is not appropriate for advisory groups to consider management issues such as staffing, support services, resources or facilities which are the responsibility of the faculty dean.
  12. Course advisory groups will review and comment on annual course reports and performance indicators such as enrolments and student satisfaction data.
  13. Course advisory groups will contribute to course reviews and submissions for Academic Board reaccreditation of courses. (Note: A proposal for periodic reaccreditation of courses is in preparation.)
Transition arrangements
  1. Deans are asked to ensure that course advisory groups are established for all coursework courses by the end of February 2011. Composition and terms of reference of advisory groups (indicating courses covered by each group and initial meeting dates where groups are new) should be reported to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) for review by the Curriculum Committee and Academic Board.
4. Governing Policy and Legislation:
4.1 Related documents
  • Course Advisory Groups Policy
  • University of Canberra Strategic Plan 2013-2017
  • Guidelines for academic staff developing new and revised courses, majors, minors and units.