The role of quality assurance agencies varies widely across the globe, but we all have at least one thing in common – processes to assure academic quality and standards. The nature of those processes and their embodiment may differ, but we are all working towards a common goal. But how many of us go beyond the processes? QAA has always had a remit beyond audit and review, but the UK’s current political and economic situation has created an unprecedented opportunity to influence the development of national policies and standards. We were already doing this at the international level – QAA has long had a role advising the UK Government – but steps to influence the development of domestic policy have been, by necessity, slightly more tentative. I hope to share our experiences with you and highlight three critical factors: independence, the balance of assurance vs enhancement, and the importance of good facilitation.
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