Project Blog Year 1 and 2

“Information is a source of learning. But unless it is organized, processed, and available to the right people in a format for decision making, it is a burden, not a benefit” – William Pollard

Normally, I take two weeks annual leave – find myself worrying slightly about the amount of things will have happened/moved on in my absence – then returning to find out in fact, nothing has changed. However, after sunning myself in Sardinia for two weeks, I returned to find significant developments had taken place. 

Since it began in September 2008, the PALET project has been looking at the range of documentation used within the formal Programme Approval Process – e.g. programme specifications, programme regulations, module descriptions etc. It has become apparent that often similar information can also be found in the prospectus, website, in Blackboard and on the Univeristy’s Student Information Management System (SIMS). The School’s then have the onourous task of keeping the different sources of information upto date and consistent – quite a job!

So, the Academic Standards and Quality Committee (ASQC) at Cardiff University, has just approved a proposal to streamline the documentation – ensuring that the different versions of similar information are upto date and consistent. It was agreed that the programme specification will be revised and expanded, different elements of which can be made available to applicants, new entrants and graduates. In addition to this, a standard template detailing the programme structure will be developed and the module description template will be updated.

The PALET project has already established good links with a number of staff in academic Schools and has a number of workshops and interviews already scheduled. So, it has been agreed that the above will be taken forward by the good ship PALET, so as not to place any additional or unecessary administrative work in Schools. We are already using a participatory design approach in the PALET project, encouraging the users of the programme approval process to get actively involved in the design of a new process. We will adopt the same approach to review and revise the programme information templates, to ensure that what is developed genuinely meets the user’s requirements.

So, all aboard the good ship PALET, and full steam ahead!