Hearing the Student Voice

Nizam Uddin discusses the importance of student committee membership and the vacancies that are currently available
Group of students
International Programmes students can sit as full members of committees with voting rights
This initiative highlights our commitment to the development of the student voice in key decision-making processes

Universities make important decisions every day on issues ranging from the setting of fees and scheduling of exam dates, to the granting of special examination arrangements, accrediting teaching institutions and developing new courses. All these decisions can have a direct impact on how you experience being a student with the University of London International Programmes. But who exactly makes the decisions?

The policy and practice of the University of London International Academy is discussed, reviewed and approved through its governance structure – formed by a range of committees, boards, panels and working groups. These groups meet approximately once a term and include senior staff from the International Programmes and Lead Colleges, with additional input provided by external members drawn from both the public and private sectors.

More recently, the University of London began to add student membership to its committees. This means that International Programmes students can sit as full members of committee with voting rights and the ability to contribute to high level discussions, recommendations and decisions. This initiative highlights our commitment to the development of the student voice in key decision-making processes.

Membership provides an invaluable opportunity to explore issues, develop student engagement with processes, and increase the student insight into decision-making at a prestigious university.

Students who are appointed as members to one of our committees are appointed for one academic year in the first instance, and the membership is renewable up to a maximum of two years. Student members are required to attend all meetings of the relevant committee or panel, and are given a full briefing of the role at an induction event scheduled for the beginning of each academic year. In addition, student members of our committees form the Student Voice Group, which meets twice a year. Membership provides an invaluable opportunity to explore issues, develop student engagement with processes, and increase the student insight into decision-making at a prestigious university.  

At the moment, the student members should be UK-based (with some authorised exceptions). This is due to the need to physically attend the meetings in London. However, the University is actively seeking to engage with students from outside of the UK too. Current projects include trialling the use of technology in our committees to allow contributions from across the world (we have already piloted the use of Skype and other similar facilities to support existing programme-review processes), exploring the concept of regional student ambassadors to act as a global sounding board to the International Programmes and finding ways to build an ongoing dialogue with students outside of formal decision-making processes.

Student members serve on the following committees and panels:

The following committees and panels currently have vacancies and are inviting applications:

Quality Assurance & Student Lifecycle Sub-Committee (QASL): one undergraduate and one postgraduate student committee member.
Learning, Teaching and Assessment Sub-Committee (LTAS): one undergraduate and one postgraduate student committee member.
Systems and Technologies Sub-Committee (STSC): one postgraduate student committee member.
Inclusive Practice Panel (IPP): one undergraduate and one postgraduate student committee member.

Further details, including information on how to apply, are available from your VLE. Alternatively, you can email studentmembership@london.ac.uk for information and an application pack.

Deadline for applications: midnight on Sunday 4 August 2012