Structuring informal orientation of branch campus university academics – creating tools and opportunities to link semi-formal induction to ad hoc peer guidance
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This paper presents a case study of how the international department of a business school in one Australian university organised staff induction to ensure academic quality assurance for Transnational Education (TNE) students in business courses. Discussed also are some of the organisational challenges brought about by distance, culture, language, pedagogic differences and practices encountered at various locations. Strategies emergent from a new staff induction program implemented by Curtin Business School (CBSi) international office informed the continuous improvement of the induction processes and quality assurance matters aligned to these. Of particular importance to the staff induction program discussed here are the approach to workloads and role clarity. Matters of quality assurance and equivalence of the learning experience for TNE students are also explored from the perspective of having operational practices that are universally understood and seamlessly applied across multiple campuses. The organisational learning from the program additionally led to the development of a readily updateable induction resource artefact (USB based) that was relevant to all locations, including the main campus. This staff-use artefact includes of a suite of text and video based resources detailing course materials, approved practices, protocols, and contact links. It is designed to act as the first point of enquiry for staff seeking further information or assistance with all aspects of their teaching and learning in CBSi transnational education courses.At the commencement of each teaching period, all staff teaching in CBSi courses are now issued with a copy of the USB, or for those already with a copy, have this updated via the web to reflect changes in unit coordinators or other important personnel contacts, course changes, or regulatory information. The USB format for this resource was chosen to ensure staff not having ideal internet access could still access the materials via personal computers.
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