Centre for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching

USW Policy Framework

USW Policy Framework

CELT’s work is guided by, connects to, and supports a variety of USW strategies, policies and process around learning, teaching and assessment (as well as wider policies). This page sets out how we interact with each of policies as well as providing links to the policies themselves.

Student Experience Plan

The University began developing a student experience plan in 2015, with the final plan being approved in summer 2016. This follows on from the implementation of the Academic Plan and the Academic Blueprint, to ensure that all elements of what makes a great student experience are captured and enhanced at the University of South Wales. CELT is working directly on several of the key strands and supports all work to improve teaching, learning and assessment.



Academic Workload Model

The University of South Wales has adopted a Workload Model which will provide a fair, transparent and effective framework for the allocation and distribution of academic workloads across the University and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWCMD) for all staff on Higher Education contracts.

This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information


Course and module leader indicative responsibilities

The Course Leader Indicative Responsibilities are intended to give academic staff who have course  leadership as part of their role an indication as to the type and level of associated responsibilities.

The Module Leader Indicative Responsibilities are intended to give academic staff who have module leadership as part of their role an indication as to the type and level of associated responsibilities.


Course leader handbook

A handbook has been created as a resource for course leaders. The handbook is a template and faculties are empowered to amend/add to it as suits local circumstances.



Course Handbook 

All courses must provide students with a course handbook to give students and overview of their expected learning. This handbook should be placed in the Course Organisation on Blackboard. 

Course Handbook templates for 2019/20:

Please note: A Welsh language handbook needs to be available to all students who have requested correspondence in Welsh (the list is available on Quercus) and all students studying in Welsh. Students can also request for a copy of the handbook in Welsh or English regardless of the above. Any additional text produced by the faculties will need to be translated accordingly.  


Academic Plan

The Academic Plan outlines the way in which we aim to enhance the student and stakeholder experience in order to meet our vision. Building on our locally rooted foundations and exciting global connections as the largest university in Wales, and one of the largest in the UK, we will focus on distinctiveness in our programmes and research, offering exceptional learning experiences and undertaking applied research and innovation for a clear purpose.

Ensuring that our students are engaged in learning through active participation and simulation will be at the heart of our offer alongside a focus on preparing our students for 21st Century employment.


Academic Blueprint

The academic blueprint for undergraduate courses is an important tool to ensure consistency in our approach to developing and implementing our teaching and learning. CELT can support academics to implement the plan and design modules that enable academic staff to focus course developments on innovation in pedagogy.


Reflection and Observation of Practice Scheme (ROPS)

The aim of the Reflection and Observation of Practice Scheme is to facilitate the sharing of critical reflective practice between colleagues as part of their staff development activity. CELT maintains guidance for the scheme and provides staff development and training on reflective practice, mentoring, and all elements of enhancing teaching and learning.

    Assessment FOR learning policy

    The University has a policy of submitting all assessments online which means all assignments must be submitted and marked online and provide feedback and marks within 20 days using Gradecentre.  Those exceptions where it is not possible to submit online assignments must be identified and agreed with academic managers at the beginning of the academic year.

    This document set out the University’s Assessment Policy from December 2015. It provides clear guidance for the use of assessment which focuses on Assessment FOR Learning.

    Assessment Tariff

    The purpose of the USW Assessment Tariff is to ensure consistency between modules with equal weightings across the University’s courses. It aims to minimise the risk of assessment overload for both students and academics. The document should be read in conjunction with the University’s Assessment For Learning Policy.


    Process for proposing a new assessment

    New modes of assessment can be proposed to be included in the Assessment Tariff and the process outlined in the policy document should be followed to ensure the University’s systems are updated and able to support the new assessment mode.

    This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information



    Assessment Dialogue and Assessment Approval Events

    The assessment dialogue and the assessment approval event are key aspects of the Assessment for Learning Policy. They aim to encourage course teams to review the assessment approach across a course to align with the principles of Assessment for Learning. The 'Assessment Dialogue – points to consider’ document* outlines how course teams might approach this part of the process.

    For further information on how the assessment approval events should be organised, refer to the University’s Assessment for Learning Policy.

    *This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information


    Assignment Submission – Required Process

    This document sets out the required process for assignment submission.


    Assessment Front Cover Sheet

    (For a faculty specific version please contact your Head of Student Experience.)


    Writing Examination Papers – Guidance for Staff

    Examinations are an important part of the way in which we assess our students and the result can have a significant impact on student progression and ultimately degree classification. Examinations should therefore be written in a way that is fair, allowing students to do their best whilst facilitating differentiation between academic ability and levels.


    Assessment Diaries

    Assessment Diaries were established in the light of student feedback to provide them with clear information about how their programme of study will be assessed. They are integrated with Blackboard and ensure that students receive timely reminders of due dates and feedback dates.

    Module minimum requirements policy (Blackboard)

    The University expects all staff to make appropriate use of the VLE. The following Policy sets out the University’s expectations in terms of the minimum amount of information a student can expect to find in their modules.

    This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information


    Course Organisation Minimum Requirements policy (Blackboard)

    All University courses have an organisation area in Unilearn which should provide students access to all relevant information about the course including the modules that make up the course, contact details for course team, the course handbook and other useful information. Twice yearly a course evaluation survey will be also be provided to students via the course organisation. The course organisation minimum requirements policy sets out the information must be provided to students in these areas.

    This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information


    Module and Course Evaluation

    For the 2016/17 academic year, the University is developing a new approach to delivering course and module evaluation, called Loop. The new system will enable students to provide feedback at both module and course level in one application. Tools are being developed to permit staff (depending on their role) to run reports at module, course, school and faculty level.


    Social Software in Learning and Teaching

    The University of South Wales believes that there are a number of benefits to using social software in learning and teaching. This document offers guidance on how best to use it and outlines some examples of how it might be used.

    This document & supporting information is currently under review.  Please contact celt@southwales.ac.uk should you require further information


    Mobile Devices in Classrooms

    The University encourages students to make use of laptops and mobile devices in their learning, teaching and assessment. The following guidelines, approved by Academic Board, are provided so that staff and students can make effective use of such devices in a formal learning and teaching environment.


    IT Policies

    IT Services has a range of policies that impact on the use of technology for learning and teaching.