The UK NARIC Quality and Standards Group (NQSG) came into effect on February 1st 2014, an amalgamation of the former UK NARIC Quality Standards and Core Service Monitoring Groups. The establishment of the NQSG is reflective of the evolving demands placed on UK NARIC and recognises the need for increased engagement and participation from UK NARIC stakeholders and members.
The principal function of the NQSG is to support UK NARIC in safeguarding its standards through the effective delivery of its services whilst maintaining high quality service provision. The group provides feedback and advice to UK NARIC operational units. Group membership is diverse and provides for a broad representation of experience and professional expertise that supports the development of UK NARIC services and methodological work.
In accordance with the UK NARIC contract with the Department for Education (DfE), the NQSG is specifically tasked to support UK NARIC in:
- Assuring the quality of information provision and the recognition process and procedures in place, having regard to the Lisbon Recognition Convention, the ENIC-NARIC service requirements and the UK NARIC Code of Practice for the Recognition of International Qualifications;
- Monitoring the quality and delivery of the NARIC Services according to the conditions set out in the NARIC contract;
- Advising on the direction and the organisation of the information development programmes;
- Advising on the content and presentation of the principal NARIC databases and relevant information provision;
- Assisting in the validation of recommendations and statements accorded to international qualifications;
- Advising on the UK NARIC Evaluation Criteria;
- Advising on the UK NARIC process and procedures, including the consideration of appeal cases against UK NARIC decisions, both formally and on a case-by-case basis;
- Providing advice on the range and appropriateness of NARIC services.
The NQSG meets twice a year. The basis of its work is the consideration of NARIC progress reports, which includes reporting on work programmes, performance indicators and statistical analyses.
The NQSG reports annually on its recommendations and offers a view on the NARIC service to the UK NARIC Council, which is responsible for the overall strategy and direction of the NARIC function, providing professional advice and guidance.
The work of the NQSG requires the support of the stakeholders of NARIC services from higher and further education sectors, employment advisory services, the quality and accreditation sector, UK qualifications and awarding bodies, the professional / regulatory sector, education statutory bodies and national agencies. The membership of the Group should be proposed by UK NARIC based on its knowledge and experiences and approved by the contract authority.
The current representatives that sit on the NQSG are:
- Alex Bols – GuildHE
- John Bramwell – Independent
- Richard Budd – Lancaster University
- Jonathan Clewes – Ofqual
- Bella Malins – Russell Group & University College London
- Martin Maule – British Universities' International Liaison Association (BUILA) & Leeds University
- Emma Meredith – Association of Colleges (AOC)
- Nadya McGinty – Newcastle College
- Andy Smith – Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA)
- Jane Towers-Clark – Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
- Katy Turff – Engineering Council
- Tbc – Cambridge Assessment International Education
- Tbc – Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA)
- Stephen Vickers – Federation of Awarding Bodies (FAB)
- Lawrence Watson – Independent
- Pamela Wilkinson – Department for Education