Quality assurance and strategic strengthening of HDR performance

Ruth Neumann

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review


Higher education policy has moved from notions of efficiency in the 1980s, quality in the 1990s, to performance in the 21st century. Outcomes and performance based funding instituted at national level in recent years is just one reflection of this change and is driving institutions to review the management of their research activities. For three consecutive years Macquarie University has undertaken a study of the experiences of commencing higher degree research (HDR) students. The purposes are to provide feedback and to inform ongoing policy development. In each year, commencing students were invited to participate in a series of focus groups, or if desired, confidential individual interviews, designed to elicit open discussion on their semester one research experiences at institutional, faculty and supervision levels. In addition a small number of interviews at middle management level with HDR Associate Deans and key administrative staff were also undertaken. Key findings from the 2003-2005 studies highlight the need for a HDR client service focus; the importance of communication and information prior to commencement; the clear and transparent resourcing of research projects; and, the management of expectations and workload of students and supervisors. The findings are discussed in relation to key institutional policies on candidature management and strong, proactive institutional leadership in research.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationQuality in postgraduate research
Subtitle of host publicationknowledge creation in testing times
EditorsMargaret Kiley, Gerry Mullins
Place of PublicationCanberra
PublisherThe Center for Education Development and Academic Methods (CEDAM)
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)0731546393
Publication statusPublished - 2006
EventQuality in Postgraduate Research Conference - Adelaide
Duration: 20 Apr 200621 Apr 2006


ConferenceQuality in Postgraduate Research Conference


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