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Governance and Structure

​​​​​The University Executive Committee is responsible for all matters associated with the development and management of the university.

Engagement and attendance policy

Last updated: 17 March 2023

1. Introduction and scope

1.1 The University of Gloucestershire is committed to an academically challenging and supportive environment, ensuring our students produce their very best work.
1.2 Engaging with the formal and informal learning opportunities that are offered by the course or subject community is a key component of attaining the best possible academic outcomes. Therefore, the University expects that students will proactively engage with their learning opportunities, including teaching activities and the guidance offered via their Personal Tutors and other professional staff within their programme of study.
1.3 Attendance at scheduled learning opportunities (i.e. all timetabled sessions) is the most important indicator of engagement and therefore the specific monitoring of attendance, as a component of wider engagement, is central to this policy.
1.4 Poor attendance not only affects the absent individual but can have a negative impact on the learning of the wider cohort by compromising pedagogical approaches and creating the impression of disengagement.
1.5 The University expects students to engage fully with Your Future Plan activities, including those forming part of modules, the course, and wider subject requirements.
1.6 The University undertakes monitoring of student engagement, including attendance, with the aim of timely identification and intervention to provide appropriate support.
1.7 This will be achieved via the tracking, processing, and visualisation of students’ learning data (learning analytics) to indicate those who are falling short of the expectations set out in the Student Charter.
1.8 The University will use student learning data in a responsible way and in adherence to all relevant legislation.
1.9 This policy applies to all students who are undertaking a taught programme that is awarded and wholly delivered by the University of Gloucestershire.
1.10 Some programmes include modules where attendance may be essential to meet professional accreditation. Details are provided in the relevant programme regulations and course guidance since the requirements may be additional to the requirements in this policy.
1.11 This policy does not apply to students who are studying towards an award that is delivered wholly or in part by a partner institution, except where its application may be stipulated under the relevant franchise agreement.
1.12 In all cases where this policy does not apply, our collaborative partners are responsible for ensuring appropriate arrangements are in place to support and monitor students’ engagement and attendance.
1.13 This policy forms part of the University’s overall academic framework and as such should be read in conjunction with other relevant policies and regulations.

2. Effective engagement and attendance monitoring will enable the University to:

a) increase a student’s engagement with their programme of study at an early stage and therefore improve academic outcomes
b) mitigate against the negative impact low attendance and engagement has on a student cohort and academic staff morale
c) support the student in taking responsibility for their programme of study by providing data and information to enable informed choices
d) enhance and facilitate a student-centred approach to learning
e) improve retention and student wellbeing
f) foster a culture of attendance and engagement throughout a programme of study
g) help students build skills and work patterns appropriate for their time after university
h) support the University in satisfying UKVI attendance monitoring requirements for relevant international students.

3. Responsibilities

3.1 Engagement, participation and attendance are co-owned by students and the University of Gloucestershire.
3.2 Success relies upon mutual trust and working together to fulfil respective responsibilities. The Student Charter explains these expectations as summarised below:

4. Intervention

4.1 The consistent and transparent monitoring of engagement, including attendance, enables students to get support at an early stage, thereby avoiding the need to exercise more serious University Instigated Withdrawal procedures.
4.2 The engagement of all taught students will be monitored by their Personal Tutor throughout each semester via a learning analytics dashboard.
4.3 The data provided via the learning analytics dashboard will provide key evidence in combination with a Personal Tutor’s professional judgement. Learning analytics at the University of Gloucestershire will be used to support human intervention, not replace it.
4.4 The focus of attendance monitoring will be timetabled events where individual students can be identified e.g. lectures, seminars, practical classes, lab sessions, Personal Tutor meetings etc.
4.5 Academic staff must ensure that student attendance is captured via the Jisc Data Explorer interface and Study Goal web app.
4.6 Engagement interventions will be the responsibility of Personal Tutors.
4.7 Legitimate reasons for a Personal Tutor engagement intervention include:
a) Failure to submit at an assessment point
b) Failure to attend at least 80% of monitored sessions during a semester
c) Failure to attend a Personal Tutor session
d) Lack of sustained engagement with the Virtual Learning Environment and Learning Resources
4.8 The intervention process will be as follows:
Stage one: a scheduled meeting with the Personal Tutor to discuss engagement;
Stage two: a second scheduled meeting with the Personal Tutor to discuss the failure to improve engagement plus associated correspondence explaining the situation;
Stage three: University Instigated Withdrawal.
4.9 The expectation of 80% attendance will allow for unavoidable or legitimate absences such as illness, although attending family celebrations, paid employment or extra-curricular sports activities are normally regarded as unauthorised absence.
4.10 Students are encouraged to report all absence to their Module Tutor; this is mandatory for programmes where there are specific Professional Body requirements.

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