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BISA and PSA members appointed as Chair and Deputy Chair of the QAA Subject Benchmark review

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The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) have announced the new Chairs and Deputy Chairs to lead the review of Subject Benchmark statements in 13 subjects, including Politics and International Relations.

Co-Chair of the Political Studies Association’s (PSA) Teaching & Learning Network, Professor John Craig (Leeds Beckett University), has been appointed Chair for Politics and International Relations. British International Studies Association (BISA) member and former BISA Learning and Teaching lead Dr Ross Bellaby (University of Sheffield) has been named Deputy Chair.

QAA subject benchmark statements form a part of the regulatory framework for higher education providers in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales while providing key guidance in England. These Statements are reviewed on a cyclical basis to ensure they are as useful as possible for discipline communities and can inform a range of purposes across the sector, including course design and providing support for securing academic standards.

John Craig said:

“As subjects, political studies and international relations are particularly vibrant and innovative, reflecting the fast changing and highly contested nature of what we study. This is an important opportunity for us to think about what we teach, how we teach, and our expectations for students’ levels of achievement. We need to hear voices and views from across our discipline to ensure that our benchmark continues to reflect our practice and support future developments.”

Ross Bellaby said:

"I am very excited, honoured and pleased to have the opportunity to help shape the next generation of Politics and International Relations teaching and I look forward to working with the whole team on developing a diverse and engaging set of benchmarks.”

John and Ross are calling for applicants to express their interest in becoming an advisory group member. The membership of the advisory group represent the diversity of the UK higher education sector, cover the four countries of the UK, and are appropriately balanced between academic and professional practice. The closing date for applications is 12 November.

Before expressing your interest you can find out about the level of commitment required and the responsibilities.

BISA Vice-Chair, Professor Kyle Grayson, said:

“It is a particularly poignant time for the disciplines of politics and international relations to reflect upon the range of themes, topics, approaches, and skills development that can be covered under our degree programmes. It is therefore important that the Advisory Group reflects the diversity in how politics and international studies are being taught across the United Kingdom.”

PSA Chair, Professor Roger Awan-Scully, said:

“I am delighted that we have such distinguished leadership in place for the QAA panel, and I very much look forward to the rest of the panel being appointed. They have an important job of work to do, and it will be crucial that the whole panel is able to bring a broad diversity of perspectives to bear in doing that work”.