Academic programme reviews

As part of its commitment to academic quality assurance, the University has established a schedule of academic programme reviews.

Programme reviews focus on the quality and design of a programme.

Review panels evaluate:

  • the design of the programme
  • programme delivery and assessment
  • programme evaluation and quality, including the use of information to improve teaching and learning
    the sense of community within a programme
  • a programme’s commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi, including the extent to which there is a Māori focus in programme design, delivery, assessment and evaluation
  • Pasifika student engagement and learning
  • A programme’s responsiveness to relevant academic, social and professional communities.

All programmes offered at the University are reviewed in a regular cycle, approximately once every seven years.

The make-up of review panels

The review panels are made up of two to three experts in the disciplinary field: at least one academic from another university in New Zealand, at least one academic from overseas. These people are nominated by the programme staff.

In nominating a panel, programme staff should consider the overall gender balance, as well as the panel’s Māori and Pasifika representation. Conflicts of interest should be avoided.

The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) signs off on the final panel and appoints a review convenor – who is usually a senior academic from another faculty within the University.

The review process

Review panels focus their evaluation on the self-review document provided by the programme staff. The panel meet over Zoom for 3 days to consider the self-review document, as well as a range of other statistical and documentary evidence. A student survey is provided by VUWSA. The panel also interviews staff and students in and around the programme over this time.

Typically, on the first two days of the panel visit, the review panel talks to:

  • senior staff across the University
  • academic staff
  • support staff
  • students.

On the last day of the review, the panel synthesises their findings. This process includes an initial drafting of the final report’s commendations and recommendations.

A report is drafted by the Academic Office and is reviewed by the convenor and the panel before going to the relevant Head of School and Dean for their consideration. The Head of School and Dean ensure the report is clear and has no factual inaccuracies.

The recommendations that are accepted by the relevant Head of School and Dean inform the programme’s future planning and operations. The programme staff regularly report on the implementation of the recommendations.

Providing submissions to the review panel

The University welcome written contributions to Academic Programme Reviews by:

  • external and internal stakeholders
  • current and former students
  • staff members within the programme and across the University
  • researchers from affiliated organisations
  • other professionals who are, or have been, affiliated with the programme.

The Academic Reviews and Monitoring Policy (PDF) sets out the kind of information that supports the work of the review panel. Submissions remain confidential to the review panel.

If you are a student you can read more about what a programme review is and how you can participate and provide feedback for upcoming reviews.

Programmes under review

All programmes offered at Victoria University of Wellington are reviewed in a regular cycle, approximately once every seven years

Review schedule for 2023

Media and Communication
Cultural Anthropology
Building and Architectural Science

For more information on the review process please contact the Policy and Reviews Officer (below).

Robert profile picture

Dr Robert Stratford

Manager, Quality and Policy
Academic Office