Higher Education Third Party Arrangement Selection and Approval Policy
- Policy owner: Chair, Accreditation Committee
- Policy category: Academic: Third Party Agreements
- Policy status: Approved
- Approval body: Council
- Endorsement body: Accreditation Committee
- Related policies:
- Last amended: 20th Dec. 2022
- Relevant HESF: 5.4
The purpose of this policy is to outline the criteria for Alphacrucis University College (AC) Higher Education Third Party Arrangements (HETPA) and procedures to regulate selection and approval.
All HETPA delivery sites.
This policy defines procedures to regulate the selection and approval of both onshore and offshore HETPA for the provision of academic programs, infrastructure, facilities and services. These HETPA are governed by appropriate contracts or written agreements, whereby a Third Party delivers part or all of an AC course of study.
AC is responsible for ensuring that delivery and administration of all AC programs by a Third Party meet the standards required. The negotiation, selection, and approval of all HETPA must therefore ensure that appropriate provision is made for due diligence, compliance and risk management, and that the Threshold Standards can be met. All HETPA agreements must be approved and signed before they are implemented. AC will notify the relevant bodies immediately in the event of establishment or discontinuation of a HETPA.
Criteria for Selection
The broad criteria for HETPA are listed below and will guide AC’s decision making when establishing new HETPA:
• proven and appropriate experience, reputation and recognition as an educational institution;
• if offshore, meets relevant legislation and industry compliance in the host country;
• if offshore, demonstrates a favourable regulatory environment in the host country;
• adequate investment and management arrangements;
• maintains appropriate facilities and infrastructure;
• employs qualified faculty and staff;
• demonstrates satisfactory student assurance and protection;
• longevity of operation and adequate business plans;
• provides effective student support services;
• maintains efficient and effective student management systems;
• demonstrates viable market demand;
• agrees to adhere to all requirements of AC policies and procedures;
• understands that AC retains control over all AC programs and courses (including responsibility for course curriculum). This includes:
a) admission criteria, including language proficiency requirements;
b) admission rules and practices – students will not be admitted and enrolled at the Third Party until they are admitted and enrolled by AC;
c) credit transfer assessment policies – transfer credit may be given for courses offered by the Third Party provider in accordance with AC rules and policies;
d) assessment by the Third Party will be quality assured using AC grade descriptors, marking criteria, monitoring processes and external moderation;
e) teaching and learning policies and practices;
f) curriculum review.
Responsible for implementation
Chair, Accreditation Committee
All students and staff
HE Third Party Arrangement Selection and Approval
1. Expression of Interest
An Expression of Interest by the Third Party is tabled at Accreditation Committee and Executive. If the Third Party is initially deemed to meet the broad Criteria for Selection, then a site visit and development of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) may proceed. More information may be requested if required.
2. Site Visit
A site visit is then undertaken to ensure that the facilities, resources and values of the institution align to AC quality standards and core values. In the case of offshore delivery sites, the costs of the site visit are covered by the higher education Third Party applicant.
Assuming a satisfactory site visit, an MOU is developed between AC and the Third Party to be submitted to Council for approval. HETPA MOUs will include (but not be limited to) information regarding:
• course(s), award(s) and mode(s) of delivery;
• teaching periods;
• status of students;
• staffing arrangements including responsibilities for staff selection, orientation, staff development and performance reviews;
• responsibilities for the delivery of subject content and assessment;
• responsibilities for the admission, enrolment, fee-invoicing, course completion and graduation of students;
• responsibilities for student support, access to academic skills support including English language, access to library materials and services, and IT support services;
• responsibilities for student welfare and wellbeing including health, counselling, specialised international student support as required under the ESOS Act, disability support, careers support and other support services to students;
• responsibilities for administration of student complaints, grievances, appeals and misconduct matters, including Academic Integrity;
• financial arrangements;
• branding and marketing;
• intellectual property;
• governance arrangements and quality assurance;
• provisions for withdrawal, phasing out or termination of the agreement including the management of consequences;
• processes for review
The MOU is received by Accreditation Committee to be tabled at Academic Board for recommendation to Council for approval. If approved by Council the MOU may be signed by AC.
5. Information Form
The HETPA applicant then completes an AC Information Form, which includes information to support the preparation of a Material Change Notification and HETPA application fee. The signed MOU and AC Information Form are received by Accreditation Committee.
6. Material Change Notification
A Material Change Notification is submitted to TEQSA. No HETPA will commence until approval is received from TEQSA.
Procedure for Modification to HETPA
If changes are required to an existing HETPA (for example, delivery of additional AC courses of study at an existing HETPA or the addition of another delivery site to an existing HETPA), the following procedure is required:
- Presentation of proposal to Executive which may include a MOU addendum (if required). If approved by Executive, a proposal is then made to Academic Board through Accreditation Committee. A site visit may be required.
- Presentation of proposal to Academic Board through Accreditation Committee. If approved, Accreditation Committee proceeds with implementation of the proposal.'
- Notification to TEQSA or ASQA through submission of a 'Material Change Notification' (if required).