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The Australian National University

Education policy exemptions to test education innovation

The ANU Academic Plan includes the following initiative for implementation by Quarter 4 2018: 'Provide a simple, streamlined process whereby academic staff can apply for an education policy exemption to test an education innovation'.

Overarching principles and approval process

Academic Board endorsed the proposed overarching principles and approval process for policy exemptions to be trialled for Semester 2, 2018.

Overarching principles

1. Approval for a policy exemption is:

    a. For one semester;
    b. For one course;
    c. Is published on a central register (this webpage); and
    d. Is published in the course outline.

2. Exemptions can be sought from the following policy documents:

    a. Student assessment (coursework) policy;
    b. Student assessment (coursework) procedure;
    c. Student academic study load and progression policy;
    d. Student academic study load and progression procedure;
    e. Student surveys and evaluations policy;
    f. Student surveys and evaluations procedure;
    g. Course outline policy;
    h. Course outline procedure;
    i. Recording of teaching activities policy;
    j. Recording of teaching activities procedure;
    k. Code of practice for teaching and learning;
    l. Glossary: student policies and procedures.

3. Outside the policy exemption scope:

    a. Requests that require system development;
    b. Changes to grading bases and administrative processes (e.g. special examination applications);
    c. University Statutes, Rules, and Orders;
    d. Government legislation.

Approval Process

1. Brief presentation (no longer than3 minutes) to the Teaching Learning and Development Committee (TLDC) addressing the following points:

  • The policy document the exemption being sought from;
  • The course and semester the exemption will apply to;
  • What will be done that is different (e.g. why is the policy exemption being sought);
  • What are the potential benefits?
  • What are the potential risks?

2. Requests are preferred by 3 minute video, to allow consideration outside of formal meetings and to be better aligned with semester dates. The video can be recorded using an iPhone, the one button recording studio, or an alternate method, with an emphasis that professional video recording is not desired. Videos are submitted to the Academic Standards and Quality Office via policy.regs@anu.edu.au and the secretariat of TLDC (currently eo.dvca@anu.edu.au).

3. The requested is considered by TLDC for approval.

4. The central register of exemptions (this webpage) is updated to include the approved policy exemption.

5. The course outline is updated to inform students of the policy exemption.

6. Within 3 months following the end of teaching, a report (preferably another short video) is provided to TLDC advising how the policy exemption went.

7. The Committee determines whether the university policy framework requires updating, based on the report received.

Semester 2, 2018 pilot phase

TLDC addressing the following points: 3/2018 held on 14 June 2018 approved the following course for a policy exemption:

Course: POLS2094 Issues in International Political Economy
Semester/Session: Semester 2, 2018
Course Convener: Dr John Minns

Updated:  26 September 2018/Responsible Officer:  Academic Standards & Quality Office /Page Contact:  Academic Standards & Quality Office