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1. Upcoming Deadlines
TEIs are reminded that marks considered by the TEI Board of Examiners must be submitted within 48 hours of the meeting taking place. Further information is available in the section titled 'Overarching Board of Examiners'.
2. Winter Congregation 2023
Students eligible for graduation (those who have successfully completed the BA, MA, Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate) will be invited to attend the graduation ceremony at 10am on 5th January 2023, at Durham Cathedral. We will shortly be sending student invitation letters to TEI key contacts, and registration will be open from 18th October.
Members of staff in TEIs are also welcome to attend the Common Awards graduation ceremonies; the staff attendance registration form will be sent to TEIs in October.
Members of staff in TEIs who hold an undergraduate degree are eligible to participate in the academic procession for the Common Awards students. If you are interested in this please indicate on the staff attendance registration form in October.
3. Common Awards Celebration Event
St John’s College, which incorporates Cranmer Hall, has very kindly offered to host a Celebration Event following the graduation ceremonies at Durham Cathedral. St John’s College, Durham University, is a 5-minute walk from the Cathedral where the ceremonies will be held.
The event will allow students to meet with representatives from the Common Awards Team and the Ministry Development Team, whilst also celebrating the graduating students from all TEIs.
There will be drinks and canapés for students and staff. Students and staff can register their attendance via the registration process.
4. Board of Examiners
Parchments and transcripts for students not eligible for Congregation (Graduation) following the 1st September Overarching Board of Examiners will be circulated to TEIs by the end of October. We will contact you to let you know when these have been circulated. Please contact the Team urgently if you need to advise us of an alternative address to send these to. Those eligible for Congregation (Graduation) will receive their award documentation ~8 weeks after the January ceremony.
The next Overarching Board of Examiners is due to be held on 1st December 2022.
Please note that the Team will be working to tight timescales for this Board. We therefore wish to remind TEIs that it is absolutely paramount that TEIs submit completing student modules marks 48 hours after they have been considered at their TEI Board of Examiners. Please do send these earlier if you are to do so.
TEIs are asked to ensure that all appropriate checks on the data are undertaken before sharing the data with the Common Awards Team to reduce the number of queries. It is also important that a staff member with full knowledge of the students’ records is available at the TEI in the weeks following the board, to resolve any queries.
TEIs are reminded that Boards of Examiners must ensure that the following is submitted to Durham in line with the deadlines in published guidance and the Common Awards Calendar:
Further information on the documents TEIs must submit following their Board of Examiners is available here.
5. TEI Attendance – Durham Board of Examiners
The Chair of the Common Awards overarching Board of Examiners has asked us to remind TEIs that they are very welcome to send a representative from their TEI Board of Examiners (normally the Chair) to the meetings of the overarching Board. Up to three TEI BoE representatives may attend each board. This can be a good way for TEIs to discover more about how the overarching Board works, and to see how we handle decisions about their students.
The next meeting of the Board is due to be held online, on 1st December from 12pm – 5pm. Please contact the team if a representative from your TEI Board of Examiners wishes to attend this meeting.
6. Conversion of Marks
Ahead of the Board of Examiners, we would like to remind TEIs of the principles surrounding the conversion of marks.
Some assignments, like language tests, might produce quantitative scores. Those scores are not the marks for that assignment. In principle, they will always need to go through some process of conversion – where conversion involves making qualitative judgments about what is meant by different levels of achievement in a quantitatively scored test, and then translating those qualitative judgments into numerical marks in the normal way.
Further information on Converting Test Scores into Marks is available on our website.
7. Invoices and Census
As per the academic calendar, the Common Awards Census will be taken on December 1st.
TEIs are asked to confirm all registration details by December 1st (i.e. please ensure any programme registration changes are submitted by this date).
As you may remember we slightly altered the census process last year, and following positive feedback from TEIs will follow the same process this year. A reminder of the process will follow nearer the time, but to summarise you will be asked to send the Common Awards team the Moodle census snapshot report on 1st December, and we will check this against our Banner data.
Once the number in the snapshot is finalised, this will be used to calculate TEI validation fees. TEIs are reminded that they will be charged for any students who withdraw after the census date.
As per the Standard Validation Contract, there may be an increase in the validation and per capita student fees charged to TEIs in line with inflation. Details will be circulated to TEIs shortly.
8. Changes of Registration
TEIs are reminded that the change of registration form needs only to be used for those changes that are not linked to approved concessions. Where concession forms have been submitted (TEI- or University-approved) which include details of the changes to be made as a direct consequence of the concession request, the relevant changes will be made to the student’s record upon approval. TEIs do not need to send a separate change of registration form.
9. TEI Good Practice examples
Over the past few years we have collated many examples of Good Practice in TEIs, including those highlighted by External Examiners and ULOs, and in TEI Forums. To assist with sharing this knowledge, we have categorised the examples and published them onto our Good Practice webpages here: Good Practice
We hope that you find this a useful resource, and please do contact us if you have any comments or suggestions of what aspects of good practice to highlight in future.
10. Staff Development: Core Skills
This programme provides participants with the opportunity to work through interactive online content in their own time, to discuss their learning with colleagues across the UK and with facilitators from Durham University’s Centre for Academic Development.
Successful completion of the Account of Professional Practice confers Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (now known as AdvanceHE) and the post-nominal letters AFHEA.
More information about the programme is available on our website.
Registration for the programme is now open.
Registration to attend the introductory session on 3rd December closes on Friday 26 November at 12 noon. Final registration for the programme closes on 14th January 2023.
11. 2021-22 Annual Self Evaluation meetings
As in previous years we will schedule individual virtual meetings with TEIs in the Spring to discuss and reflect on the information provided in Annual Self-Evaluation submissions. These meetings will either be chaired by Prof Higton, Dr. Selina Stone or Dr. Frances Clemson, and this year will include a strong focus on the response to From Lament to Action. Following discussions with the Ministry Development Team , it has also been agreed that a member of the Ministry team will also attend these meetings where the TEI trains Church of England ministers, to provide a more co-ordinated response to ASE submissions. If you feel it is more appropriate for your TEI to have two separate meetings then please let us know when we begin to arrange meetings.
The Common Awards Team will be in touch to organise a convenient time for these meetings following TEI submissions of ASEs.
The deadline for the submissions of Annual Self Evaluation forms is 25th November. You can find the most recent version of the forms on our Templates and Forms webpage. Please submit sections A and B to David Hanson in the Ministry Development Team.
12. Further Information
The full 2022/2023 academic calendar is available here.
The Common Awards Team