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Quality Assurance

Academic Consultation Panel (ACP) Visits

The objective of the Academic Consultation Panel (ACP) visits, which take place once every six years, is to make an integrated, holistic assessment of all aspects of the academic unit(s), namely academic, research and management so as to ascertain their overall standard.


The process involves critical self-evaluation of the academic unit(s) and peer review by a panel formed of academics and professionals outside the University.

To review the academic activities within a unit as designated by the University with particular attention given to the following:

  1. mission, goals and objectives of the academic unit;
  2. summary of how the recommendations of the previous ACP and the Departmental Academic Advisor (DAA) have been addressed;
  3. how the academic unit maintains its academic standards;
  4. potentials and directions for future developments of the academic unit;
  5. transparency, efficiency and effectiveness of the unit's management and decision-making processes;
  6. interaction and relationship of the academic unit with the industry/profession, the community and its advisory committees;
  7. availability of academic expertise;
  8. the soundness of the curriculum design currently in use;
  9. the quality of teaching and learning of the programme(s) being offered;
  10. assessment procedures and practices of student course work, examinations and projects;
  11. the quality of students enrolled and the availability of learning opportunities on their respective programmes;
  12. internal quality assurance practices and quality enhancement for existing quality assurance system, with a particular focus on: (1) enhancing the student learning experience, and (2) global engagements: strategies and current developments;
  13. the collegiality and interchange among staff, among students, and between staff and students;
  14. the delivery of taught postgraduate programmes and the support for research postgraduate students;
  15. the level, quality and appropriateness of the research/scholarship being undertaken within the academic unit, and the strength of any external alliances in support of these activities;
  16. arrangements for the management of off-campus provision of academic programmes (if applicable); and
  17. the suitability of environment and other resource provisions to the academic unit.

Academic Consultation Panel (ACP) visits of each academic unit take place once every six years.  The duration of the panel visit would depend on the complexity of the unit under review. Generally it would last for three to four days (see Appendix 6 for typical schedule for the visit).  Click here for the schedule for the fourth round of ACP visits.

(see Appendix 7(a)  for the flow chart of the process involved and Appendix 7(b) for the typical timeline)


A Self-evaluation Document (SED), with information on the teaching, research, service functions and administration of the academic unit(s) under review, will be prepared and submitted to the Panel for review along with other supplementary information at least four weeks before the scheduled visit dates.


Following the visit, an ACP Report will be prepared and endorsed by the Panel, which will be forwarded to the academic unit(s) for a written response and follow-up. The Report, together with the academic unit(s)’ response with improvement action plan(s), will be submitted to the University Quality Assurance Committee (QAC) and the Senate for consideration.

i.   Composition of the Panel
  1. The size of the panel is based on the particular needs of the academic unit under review.  The Chair of QAC shall decide on the composition of the panel, in consultation with the Dean/Director of AVA concerned.
  2. The panel shall include external members only.  They should be academics, professionals or practitioners at a senior level (usually at the rank of Associate Professor or above), with substantial relevant scholarly experience and, preferably, some knowledge of the academic unit being reviewed.
  3. The panel shall comprise a minimum of four to a maximum of six members (for Faculty-based reviews, the number of panel members should increase according to the complexity of operation and "size" of the academic unit under review).


ii.   Chair of the Panel
  1. The Chair should preferably be a senior academic from another institution, and is appointed by the Chair of QAC in consultation with the Dean/Director of AVA concerned.


iii.   Appointment Procedures
  1. The academic unit to be reviewed shall nominate names for panel membership, including the Chair and members, to the Chair of QAC for approval. Panel members should be carefully selected.  They should not have close affiliation with the academic unit under review in the last three years. CVs of the nominated panel members would be collected to ensure appropriateness of the nominees. 
  2. Following approval of the panel membership, the AQSS will issue the appointment letters.

The SED shall include the following information on the teaching, research, service functions and administration of the academic unit:

  1. mission, goals and objectives
  2. administration and organization
  3. information on existing programmes (i.e., Programme Documents) and proposed curriculum changes, if any
  4. report on follow-up work on the recommendations of the previous ACP review
  5. follow-up actions in response to the recommendations of the DAA

teaching and learning
     .      design of curriculum
     .      design of teaching and learning processes
     .      design of student assessment and use of assessment results
     .      implementation quality
     .      commitment of resources to teaching and learning

implementation of Outcomes-Based Teaching and Learning (OBTL)

student profile

graduate profile and satisfaction level

research/scholarly activities

quality assurance processes

infrastructure and resources

consultancy/professional/community services

academic staff profile (CVs of not more than two pages for each staff to be included as an Appendix) - with information on staff name, academic qualifications, discipline, research, selected publications of the last three years, links with industry or the professional community



The above is by no means exhaustive.  Depending on their nature and complexity, the academic units are encouraged to add extra information as they deem fit. 



Last updated in March 2020