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New guidelines of relevance to geographers have been published for external examiners at UK higher education institutions.
Within the UK, external examiners work alongside higher education institutions to ensure academic standards are maintained across institutions and are nationally comparable. The UK Standing Committee for Quality Assessment have recently developed a new set of principles to help external examiners carry out their role effectively and to assist institutions to promote effective external examining.
The guidance recommends that external examiners should:
Protect standards and ensure comparability and consistency
Act as an expert in providing independent critical review, performing the role with integrity, and supporting enhancement
Ensure fairness and transparency
Maintain the currency of their knowledge
Support inclusivity and equity in teaching, learning and assessment
The guidance recommends that institutions should:
Appoint the right examiners, ensuring that conflicts of interest are avoided
Provide adequate training to enable external examiners to fulfil the role
Ensure that the role is fully understood
Enable students to understand the value and purpose of external examining
Engage with and support the external examiners they appoint
Engage with and support their own staff acting in the role elsewhere
Review their policies and practice against these principles on a regular basis
You can read the full guidance document here.
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