Report of Programme Validation Panel

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1 Report of Programme Validation Panel Panel Visit: Friday 8 th March 2013 Programme Title Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management Named Award: Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management Award Type: Diploma Award Class: Supplemental Award NFQ Level: 8 ECTS / ACCS Credits: 60 First Intake: Panel Members Mr. Billy Bennett (Chair) Mr. Eamon Balfe Dr Brendan O'Connell Dr. Brendan Ryder (Secretary) Registrar, Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LyIT) Manager, Total Produce, Swords Business Park, Swords Co Dublin. Head of Department of Biological Sciences, Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) Assistant Registrar, Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) Programme Development Team Dr. Edel Healy Dr. Breda Brennan Mr. Shane Hill Mr. Tony Lennon Dr. Niamh Dreeling Mr. Richard Crowley Ms. Annmarie McHugh Head of School of Health and Science Head of Department of Applied Sciences Head of Department of Management and Financial Studies Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Department of Management and Financial Studies Page 1/13

2 1 Introduction The following report to Academic Council is a validation panel report from an expert panel of assessors on a proposal from the Department of Applied Sciences at Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) to develop a Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management. The evaluators would like to thank the members of the development team for engaging generously and openly with the review process. The report is divided into the following sections: Background to Proposed Programme General Findings of the Validation Panel Programme-Level Findings Module-Level Findings 2 Background to Proposed Programme The Food and Beverage sector is one of the largest sectors in Ireland from the viewpoint of both production and consumption. Its handling within the supply chain is vital to the Irish economy. Globalization of the food industry requires increased transportation of raw materials and finished goods. The proposed programme will provide graduates with the opportunity to develop supply chain management skills, which have been identified as a major skills gap in the Food and Beverages Sector. Graduates will be able to critically evaluate the concepts and theories that underpin business and international management and the pivotal role played by internationalisation strategies in the creation and maintenance of a viable business. They will be able to demonstrate the capability required to work in a multi-disciplinary team including scientific and business personnel. The Department of Applied Sciences has consulted with the Food and Beverage industry, particularly with the more than 100 companies in the region, to ensure that the content and learning outcomes of academic programmes remain relevant to industry. In a recent survey of the Food Industry in the N.E. region, 93% of respondents indicated that business skills were of relevance to science graduates, 87% that supply chain management skills were relevant or very relevant and all respondents indicated that quality management was relevant or very relevant. The proposed programme is aligned to skills gaps identified in recent publications on skills gaps in the Food and Beverage Sector including: Department of Agriculture, Fisheries & Food (2011): Food Harvest: A vision for agrifood & fisheries. Department of Agriculture, Fisheries & Food (2011): Annual Review and Outlook for Agriculture, Fisheries & Food 2010/2011 Bord Bia (2011): Export Performance and Prospects Page 2/13

3 Forfas (2009): Expert Group on Future Skills Needs. Future Skills Requirements for the Food and Beverage Sector. The Certificate in Food Supply Chain Management was awarded funding as part of the Springboard1 2011/12 initiative as a one-semester programme. As a response to demand from the current cohort of students on the Certificate programme, the proposed Diploma programme includes an industry work placement module and increases the total credits for the programme from 30 to General Findings of the Validation Panel The panel would like to commend the programme development team for the quality of their submission and particularly for the collaborative and cross-departmental nature of the programme design and development. The engagement and commitment of the team was evident on the day of the validation panel. Also, the rationale and demand for the programme were clearly established and articulated. The programme has been designed to meet the needs of industry and the skills gap has been identified and mapped to programme modules. Having considered the documentation provided and discussed it with the programme development team, the validation panel recommends the approval of the Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management to the Academic Council of Dundalk Institute of Technology for the next five academic years or until the next programmatic review, whichever occurs sooner. Approval is conditional on the submission of a revised programme document that takes account of the conditions and recommendations outlined below and a response document describing the actions of the Department to address the conditions and recommendations made by the programme validation panel. In this report, the term Condition is used to indicate an action or amendment which in the view of the validation panel must be undertaken prior to the commencement of the programme. Conditions are mandatory if the programme is to be approved. The term Recommendation indicates an item to which the Programme Board should give serious consideration for implementation at an early stage and which should be the subject of on-going monitoring. 4 Programme-Level Findings This section of the report addresses the following programme level considerations: Demand Award Institute strategy alignment Entry requirements Access, transfer and progression Standards and Outcomes Programme structure Page 3/13

4 Teaching and Learning Strategies Assessment Strategy Resource requirements Quality assurance. 4.1 Demand Is there a convincing need for the programme and has evidence been provided to support it? 4.2 Award Is the level and type of the award appropriate? Recommendation: The panel recommends that the programme development team consider re-classifying the programme as a Special-Purpose Award rather than a Supplemental Award. According to QQI/HETAC guidelines, a Special-Purpose Award is given for relatively narrow or purposespecific achievement. A Supplemental Award is given for learning that is additional to a Major Award. 4.3 Institute Strategy Alignment Is the proposed programme aligned to the Institute s strategy and are the strategic themes of entrepreneurship, sustainability and internationalisation embedded in the proposed programme as appropriate? 4.4 Entry Requirements Are the entry requirements for the proposed programme clear and appropriate?, subject to certain recommendation(s) Recommendation: The process for RPL (Recognised-Prior Learning) needs to be included in the programme documentation. Page 4/13

5 4.5 Access, Transfer and Progression Does the proposed programme incorporate the procedures for access, transfer and progression that have been established by the NQAI and does it accommodate a variety of access and entry requirements? 4.6 Standards and Outcomes Does the proposed programme meet the required award standards for programmes at the proposed NFQ level (i.e. conform to QQI Award Standards)? The awards standards requirements for Science NFQ Level 8 programmes are as follows (the standards can also be found at: Knowledge-Breadth An understanding of the theory, concepts and methods pertaining to a field (or fields) of learning. The learner is expected to have a detailed knowledge and understanding of: The essential facts, major concepts, principles and theories associated with a particular sub-field, or sub-fields of science. Knowledge-Kind Detailed knowledge and understanding in one or more specialised areas, some of it at the current boundaries of the field. The learner is expected to have a detailed knowledge of: The terminology, nomenclature and or classification systems appropriate to the subject area. The theories, paradigms, defining concepts and underlying principles of the subject area. Advanced methods for acquiring, interpreting and analysing subject-specific information, with a critical understanding of the appropriate contexts for their use through the study of texts and original papers. The identification, definition and resolution of complex problems. Page 5/13

6 Knowledge-Kind (contd.) Relevant legal and regulatory frameworks. Current issues of concern to society and an understanding of the philosophical and ethical issues involved. Some aspects of the defining elements of the subject area as a result of in-depth individual study or research. The current knowledge and development of the subject area (including current limits of theoretical and applied knowledge) Know-How & Skill Range Demonstrate mastery of a complex and specialised area of skills and tools; use and modify advanced skills and tools to conduct closely guided research, professional or advanced technical activity. The learner will be able to: Solve complex technical problems. Employ advanced data analysing, synthesising and summarising skills in a scientific work setting. Source, interpret and apply appropriate and referenced literature and other information sources. Work independently within defined time and resource boundaries. Effectively and safely operate a range of complex laboratory and other relevant equipment. Apply advanced numerical and statistical analysis skills. Maintain detailed records of activities Communicate scientific information in a variety of forms to specialist and non-specialist audiences. Design a relevant programme of investigation. Know-How & Skill Selectivity Exercise appropriate judgement in a number of complex planning, design, technical and/or management functions related to products, services, operations or processes, including resourcing. The learner will be able to: Think independently and make effective decisions. Recognise and respect the views of others Contribute fully to the day-to-day operations of a scientific Page 6/13

7 industry or other scientific work setting. Make decisions in relation to a complex or highly regulated environment. Formulate and test hypotheses. Appreciate limits of knowledge in a scientific area and respond appropriately. Competence-Context Use advanced skills to conduct research, or advanced technical or professional activity, accepting accountability for all related decision making; transfer and apply diagnostic and creative skills in a range of contexts. The learner will be able to: Use advanced scientific skills to critically interpret existing knowledge and apply in new situations. Make and report appropriate decisions and take responsibility for such decisions. Behave ethically, in a range of work settings. Present and engage in debate relating to general scientific areas. Competence-Role Act effectively under guidance in a peer relationship with qualified practitioners; lead multiple, complex and heterogeneous groups. The learner will be able to: Plan for effective project implementation and manage the organisation of tasks, people and resources. Participate constructively in a complex team environment within a scientific field. Reflect on own practices. Accept responsibility for the work of self and others Develop and train staff to meet changing technical needs. Competence- Learning to Learn Learn to act in variable and unfamiliar learning contexts; learn to manage learning tasks independently, professionally and ethically. The learner will be able to: Identify knowledge gaps and source and undertake self- Page 7/13

8 learning to fill the gaps. Demonstrate an awareness of the need for enhanced technical competencies and continuing professional development Evince a commitment to continuing education and lifelong learning. Competence- Insight Express a comprehensive, internalised, personal world view manifesting solidarity with others. The learner will be able to: Develop a capacity for social responsibility Contribute to the development of the role of the scientist in society. Demonstrate the capacity to draw complex information together and present in an understandable format. Demonstrate the capacity to acknowledge the current issues of concern to society and an understanding of the philosophical and ethical issues involved. Demonstrate a questioning attitude to the assumptions, both overt and covert, underlying modern science. The proposed programme learning outcomes can be found in Appendix 1: Proposed Programme Outcomes. 4.7 Programme Structure Is the programme structure logical and well designed and can the stated proposed programme outcomes in terms of employment skills and career opportunities be met by this programme? The proposed programme schedules can be found in Appendix 2: Proposed Programme Schedules. 4.8 Teaching and Learning Strategies Have appropriate teaching and learning strategies been provided for the proposed programme? Page 8/13

9 4.9 Assessment Strategies Have appropriate programme assessment strategies been provided for the proposed programme (as outlined in the QQI/HETAC Assessment and Guidelines, 2009)? Assessment strategies are required in line with HETAC s Assessment and Standards and should form a substantial part of the documentation to be considered by the programme validation panel. See (HETAC (2009) Assessment and Standards, Section 4.6.1, page 33). Accordingly the assessment strategy should address the following (See (HETAC (2009) Assessment and Standards, Section 2.2.5, page 13) : Description and Rationale for the choice of assessment tasks, criteria and procedures. This should address fairness and consistency, specifically their validity, reliability and authenticity; Describe any special regulations; Regulate, build upon and integrate the module assessment strategies; Provide contingent strategy for cases where learners claim exemption from modules, including recognition of prior learning; Ensure the programme s continuous assessment workload is appropriately balanced; Relate to the teaching and learning strategy; Demonstrate how grading criteria will be developed to relate to the Institutional grading system. The Institute resource entitled Assessment and Learning: A Policy for Dundalk Institute of Technology (Nov 2010) (https://www.dkit.ie/celt/documents-and-policies/assessment-andlearning-guidelines-dundalk-institute-technology) should also be consulted. 4.10Resource Requirements Does the Institute possess the resources and facilities necessary to deliver the proposed programme? With two exceptions, the modules are taken from existing Programmes within DkIT. The panel were satisfiedthat the Institute possesses the necessary resources to offer the proposed programme. Staffing levels are appropriate with levels of qualifications and competence of staff sufficient for programme delivery. Page 9/13

10 4.11Quality Assurance Does the proposed programme demonstrate how the Institute s quality assurance procedures have been applied and that satisfactory procedures exist for the on-going monitoring and periodic review of programmes? 4.12Programme Management Are the programme management structures adequate? 5 Module-Level Findings 5.1 Assessment Strategies Have appropriate module assessment strategies been included in the proposed programme?, subject to certain condition(s) and recommendations Condition: The panel considers that there is extensive experience within the School in providing and managing work placements. However, the programme as specified needs to include a work placement handbook/manual that includes detailed information on: Induction and Orientation Roles and Responsibilities Monitoring Assessment The assessment strategy for the workplace module Food Industry Work Placement should include a breakdown of the various assessment components, together with the grading criteria for employers and teaching staff. Failed elements and re-assessment strategy should also be detailed. The current module is assessed on a Pass/Fail basis. The panel recommends that the programme team consider using a numerical grade for the assessment of this module. Recommendations: The consistency of the module learning outcomes should be reviewed as part of the current programmatic review process that the School of Health and Science is engaged in. Page 10/13

11 The learning outcomes in the Food Industry Work Placement module should be strengthened to reflect how this 30 ECTS module will equip students for industry. The modules on the programme should incorporate ethical issues. 5.2 Other Findings None. Validation Panel Report Approved By: Signed: Mr. Billy Bennett, Chairperson. Date: 5 June 2013 Page 11/13

12 Appendix 1: Proposed Programme Outcomes Page 12/13

13 Appendix 2: Proposed Programme Schedules Page 13/13

14 Response to the Programme Validation Panel Report Panel Visit: Friday 8 th March 2013 Named Award: Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management Programme Title Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management Award Type: Diploma Award Class: Supplemental Award NFQ Level: 8 ECTS / ACCS Credits: 60 First Intake: Panel Members Mr. Billy Bennett (Chair) Mr. Eamon Balfe Dr Brendan O'Connell Dr. Brendan Ryder (Secretary) Registrar, Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LyIT) Manager, Total Produce, Swords Business Park, Swords Co Dublin. Head of Department of Biological Sciences, Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) Assistant Registrar, Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) Programme Development Team Dr. Edel Healy Dr. Breda Brennan Mr. Shane Hill Mr. Tony Lennon Dr. Niamh Dreeling Mr. Richard Crowley Ms. Annmarie McHugh Head of School of Health and Science Head of Department of Applied Sciences Head of Department of Management and Financial Studies Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences Lecturer, Management and Financial Studies School Response to Validation Panel Report Page 1/4

15 Introduction The report contains a response from the Department of Applied Sciences to the programme validation panel report for the proposed programme Diploma in Food Supply Chain Management. Condition No.1: The panel considers that there is extensive experience within the School in providing and managing work placements. However, the programme as specified needs to include a work placement handbook/manual that includes detailed information on: Induction and Orientation Roles and Responsibilities Monitoring Assessment The assessment strategy for the workplace module Food Industry Work Placement should include a breakdown of the various assessment components, together with the grading criteria for employers and teaching staff. Failed elements and re-assessment strategy should also be detailed. The current module is assessed on a Pass/Fail basis. The panel recommends that the programme team consider using a numerical grade for the assessment of this module. RESPONSE The Work Placement handbook has been updated to contain the details outlined above (Work Placement handbook attached). The module descriptor has been updated to outline how the work placement is assessed and the programme team have agreed to assign a numerical grade to the work placement report (Module Descriptor attached). Recommendation No. 1 The panel recommends that the programme development team consider re-classifying the programme as a Special-Purpose Award rather than a Supplemental Award. According to QQI/HETAC guidelines, a Special-Purpose Award is given for relatively narrow or purposespecific achievement. A Supplemental Award is given for learning that is additional to a Major Award. RESPONSE The School agree to this re-classification School Response to Validation Panel Report Page 2/4

16 Recommendation No. 2 The process for RPL (Recognised-Prior Learning) needs to be included in the programme documentation. RESPONSE The DkIT RPL Policy is attached and will be referenced in all programme documentation. Recommendation No. 3 The consistency of the module learning outcomes should be reviewed as part of the current programmatic review process that the School of Health and Science is engaged in. The learning outcomes in the Food Industry Work Placement module should be strengthened to reflect how this 30 ECTS module will equip students for industry. The modules on the programme should incorporate ethical issues. RESPONSE The modules are currently being reviewed as part of the School Programmatic Review process and shall be considered by a re-validation panel in June The above recommendations shall be included in the review of same. School Response to Validation Panel Report Page 3/4

17 School Response Report Approved By: Signed: Dr. Edel Healy, Head of School of Health and Science/ Date: 30 th April 2013 I confirm that the conditions and recommendations contained in the validation panel report have now been met and recommend this programme to the Academic Council at Dundalk Institute of Technology for ratification. Signed: Mr. Billy Bennett, Chairperson Date: School Response to Validation Panel Report Page 4/4

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