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Deakin Professional Practice Credentials procedure

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) This Procedure is effective from 4 December 2017.

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Section 2 - Purpose

(2) This Procedure documents the processes for approving and revising Deakin Professional Practice Credentials, the process for assessing knowledge or capabilities that merit the award of credentials and the process for awarding credentials.

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Section 3 - Scope

(3) This Procedure applies to professional practice credentials awarded by the University to warrant learning gained through significant industry experience. It applies to candidates undertaking credentials including those who are also students undertaking credentialling as part of a course unless otherwise specified.

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Section 4 - Policy

(4) This Procedure is pursuant to the Deakin Micro-credentials policy.

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Section 5 - Procedure

Approval and revision of credentials

(5) Deakin Professional Practice Credentials (credentials) may be awarded by the University in accordance with the Deakin Micro-credentials policy to warrant achievement by candidates of:

  1. knowledge and/or
  2. generic employment capabilities (capabilities)
gained through professional practice in the workplace.

(6) Credentials are developed by the University in consultation with relevant industry or professional bodies in accordance with the Professional Practice Credential Assessment Framework (Framework), approved by the Academic Board, that includes for each credential:

  1. a descriptor that specifies the nature of the knowledge or capabilities covered by the credential
  2. the level of knowledge or capabilities required with reference to the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
  3. standards of achievement that must be demonstrated for the credential to be awarded
  4. evidence to be provided by the candidate to demonstrate achievement, which may include documentary or digital evidence.

(7) New and revised credentials are approved in accordance with the following sequential steps:

  1. endorsement by an academic discipline expert
  2. endorsement by the Executive Dean (or nominee)
  3. endorsement by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education (or nominee)
  4. approval by the Chair, Academic Board.

(8) Credential revisions that consist of a re-badging or title change only can be approved by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education.

(9) The Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education provides an annual report to the Academic Board on credentials that includes:

  1. the implementation of the credential process
  2. the management of appropriately qualified assessors
  3. the number of credentials sought and awarded
  4. feedback from candidates
  5. feedback from industry or professional bodies where appropriate.

(10) The Framework is reviewed annually by the Academic Board with reference to the report by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education.

Process for achieving and awarding credentials

Registration for credential

(11) Candidates select an appropriate credential and conduct a preliminary self-assessment of their level of knowledge or employment capabilities with reference to the requirements for the credential as specified in the Framework.

(12) Candidates register to be assessed for their chosen credential at a specified level and authenticate their identity.

Submission of evidence and written testimony

(13) Candidates select evidence to address the criteria specified in the credential and develop a short written testimony (up to 1,000 words) to support their application. The testimony provides context to support the evidence and to explain why it was chosen. Candidates may seek advice from the University about appropriate evidence and how to write their testimony.

(14) Candidates submit their evidence and written testimony to the University through an online assessment portal. 

(15) The University conducts a preliminary administrative check to ensure that submission requirements are met. If not, feedback is provided and the candidate is asked to submit further information through the online assessment portal.

Submission of video testimony

(16) When the University is satisfied that a submission is complete, candidates will be invited to complete a video testimony through the online assessment portal as follows:

  1. Candidates will be invited to answer a set of questions that require them to reflect on their knowledge and capabilities.
  2. The questions will be randomly selected from a pool of comparable questions.
  3. Additional standard questions will be included:
    1. requesting candidates to confirm their identity and give consent for the video testimony to be given to assessors
    2. inviting candidates to make any further statement/s to support their application.
  4. Candidates will have up to two weeks from the time of the invitation to access the questions.
  5. Candidates will complete the video testimony within a set time of accessing the questions.

Assessment

(17) A candidate’s evidence, written testimony and video testimony will be independently assessed by two assessors within two weeks of submission to determine whether the candidate has demonstrated knowledge and/or capabilities at the level required to achieve the selected credential. Assessors must be appropriately qualified as specified in clause 36.

(18) Either assessor may request additional video testimony or further evidence to address specific questions arising from the submission. Any additional information will be provided to both assessors.

(19) Each assessor will complete a rubric that includes the criteria that must all be met for the credential to be awarded.

(20) Both assessors must agree on one of the following possible outcomes:

  1. achievement of selected credential at the relevant level
  2. achievement of credential at the level below the selected credential
  3. failure to achieve a credential at the selected level or level below that selected.

(21) Where the assessors do not agree on the outcome, a third assessor will conduct an independent assessment in accordance with the processes set out in clauses 16-19. Where the third assessor agrees with the decision of one of the first two assessors that decision will be final. Where the third assessor recommends a different outcome, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education will review the candidate’s submission and the assessors’ feedback and decide the final outcome.

(22) The University will notify candidates in writing about the outcome of the assessment and provide feedback on how the final judgement was made. Candidates who have not been successful in achieving the credential at the selected level will also be given advice on how to improve their submission to achieve their desired outcome.

(23) Where a credential is undertaken, the grade applied against the credential will be recorded as:

Notation Grade
SAT Satisfied
NSA Not satisfied

Alternative assessment arrangements

(24) Alternative assessment arrangements may be made for candidates with a disability or health condition to ensure that all candidates have a consistent and fair opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and/or capabilities. Where a candidate is concurrently enrolled in a Deakin professional practice course, alternative arrangements will be made according to the process set out in the Assessment (Higher Education Courses) procedure.

(25) Candidates who are prevented from completing an assessment requirement at the scheduled time because of circumstances outside their control may apply for an extension. The decision whether to grant an extension will be made by a staff member authorised by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education. Where the candidate is enrolled in a Deakin professional practice course, the requirements for rescheduling assessment tasks specified in the Assessment (Higher Education Courses) procedure will apply.

(26) The University will keep a record of any adjustments made to assessment requirements for individual candidates.

Award of credentials

(27) Where a credential has been assessed as achieved, the the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education (or nominee) will approve the award of the credential where satisfied that the assessment requirements have been fulfilled.

(28) Digital credentials will be awarded to successful candidates that include:

  1. insignia of the University
  2. icon and name of the credential
  3. approved description of the credential, including the knowledge and/or capabilities demonstrated by the candidate
  4. level of achievement with reference to the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).

(29) DeakinCo. administers the award of credentials and maintains records of achievement. DeakinCo. will provide the records to be retained by the University.

Candidate information and feedback

(30) Clear, accurate and timely information about credentials will be available to prospective and current candidates to enable them to make informed decisions before and during the credential process. This will include information about:

  1. policy and procedure governing the award of credentials
  2. approved criteria for each credential and evidence required to demonstrate knowledge and/or capabilities
  3. assessment processes and requirements
  4. their rights, obligations and liabilities, including:
    1. standards of behaviour expected of them during the credential process
    2. information about how to apply the principles of academic integrity and the consequences of breaches of academic integrity
  5. services and support available to them before and during their candidature
  6. processes for providing feedback and lodging complaints.

(31) The University will seek feedback from all candidates who have applied for a credential to assess their satisfaction with the process and outcomes. This feedback will assist in identifying any required actions as part of the continuous quality improvement of the credential process.

Breaches of obligations by candidates

(32) Where a candidate is concurrently enrolled in a Deakin professional practice course, allegations of breaches of obligations under this Procedure will be managed in accordance with relevant student academic integrity and general misconduct policies.

(33) Where a candidate is not enrolled in a Deakin professional practice course, allegations of breaches of obligations under this procedure will be investigated by the University. A senior staff member nominated by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education or nominee will consider the evidence and make a decision about whether the allegation is supported and what action should be taken. This may include education about acceptable practice, a formal warning, exclusion from the credentialling process or revocation of the credential, depending on the severity of the breach. The candidate will be notified in writing of the outcome and review process.

(34) If the allegation under clause 32 is supported, the candidate may request a review of the decision and/or resulting actions within five working days of notification. The Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education or nominee will appoint an independent senior staff member to review the original decision and decide whether to change the outcome. The decision of the reviewer is final.

Management of assessors

(35) The University will maintain a list of assessors and their qualifications approved by Heads of Academic Units on the advice of senior member/s of Academic staff with expertise in relevant disciplines.

(36) The required qualifications of assessors are as follows:

Credential Level Minimum Qualifications: Assessors 1 and 3 Minimum Qualifications: Assessor 2
Up to and including AQF 7 Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma or Bachelor Degree Honours in a relevant area (AQF Level 8) Bachelor Degree in a relevant area (AQF Level 7) PLUS Five years’ current relevant industry or professional experience
AQF 8 Masters Degree in a relevant area (AQF Level 9) Bachelor Degree in a relevant area (AQF Level 7) PLUS Five years’ current relevant industry or professional experience
AQF 9 Doctoral Degree in a relevant area (AQF Level 10) Bachelor Degree in a relevant area (AQF Level 7) PLUS Five years’ current relevant industry or professional experience

(37) The University will select assessors with appropriate qualifications from the approved list to assess the knowledge and/or capabilities of candidates who have applied for a credential.

(38) Before conducting their first assessment, assessors will receive induction information and training covering the principles of good assessment and the University’s procedural requirements.

(39) Assessors must:

  1. treat all information received from the University in confidence
  2. declare any potential conflict of interest
  3. conduct the assessment in accordance with the requirements of this Procedure and the principles set out in the Schedule A: Deakin Curriculum Framework of the Higher Education Courses policy.
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Section 6 - Definitions

(40) For the purpose of this Procedure:

  1. candidate: a person who has registered to be assessed for a credential. A candidate may be concurrently enrolled as a student in a Deakin course that integrates Deakin Professional Practice Credentials into its design.
  2. credential: a Deakin Professional Practice Credential awarded in accordance the Professional Practice Credential Assessment Framework.
  3. digital credential: as defined in the Deakin Micro-credentials policy.
  4. macro-credential: as defined in the Deakin Micro-credentials policy.
  5. micro-credential: as defined in the Deakin Micro-credentials policy.
  6. rubric: document developed for each credential that specifies the criteria that must be met for the credential to be awarded and which must be completed by each assessor.
  7. student: A person enrolled in a course or unit in the University pursuant to Statute 5.1 - Admission, Selection and Enrolment.