Working Sessions

Choose from over 60 available working sessions to tailor your professional development and Conference experience. Read more about sessions below or download as a pdf:

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Working session one

Working Session 101
Supplier showcase
Curriculum Management Software: Beyond a simple repository

The session is designed to identify the key immediate practical benefits of curriculum management and to explore where an institution goes after implementation in terms of streamlining business practices and helping students navigate and understand curriculum components.

There will be a mix of presentation and an informed Q&A on the motivation and practical benefits of implementing a curriculum management system in terms of centrally holding all relevant curriculum data, reporting, quality assurance including mapping and graduate attributes, collaborative course development and publication of course content and related marketing messages. We will provide a demonstration of the software to reinforce some key course administration insights, before looking beyond the system as a ‘simple curriculum repository’ and to discussing some strategic insights such as curriculum agility, streamlining business practices and integration with other university systems.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand how a curriculum management application works and what it can do to support a critical area of university management
  • Evaluate the motivation to implement a dedicated curriculum management system and identify key success factors
  • Analyse the strategic benefits of a curriculum management system over and above its capacity to act as a repository

Speakers:
Paul Hederman Director of Sales and Marketing Akari Software Ltd
Seema Patel MAUA Senior Quality Administrator University of Arts London

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Quality | Marketing | Teaching and learning | Registry

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 102
New delegates’ welcome

In this session we welcome first time visitors to the AUA conference. This is an ideal opportunity to network with other newcomers, see what’s in store for the two days, and find out how you can get the most out of the conference.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Meet and network with colleagues
  • Learn more about what’s coming up during the conference and how to get the most of the experience

Speaker:
Chris Ince, University Secretary and Registrar, London Metropolitan University and AUA Chair

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 103
International delegates’ welcome

In this session we welcome international delegates to the AUA conference. This is an ideal opportunity to network with other international visitors, see what’s in store for the two days, and find out how you can get the most out of the conference.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Meet and network with international colleagues
  • Learn more about what’s coming up during the conference and how to get the most of the experience

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 104
Ambitious Futures graduates

This session is only open to Ambitious Futures graduate trainees.

Securing a place on the Ambitious Futures Management Trainee scheme offers an unparalleled opportunity to start building a career in higher education. Developing contacts and networks and making constructive use of conferences are a crucial part of your continuing development as an HE professional. In this session, Sarah Shaw and Gin Bhandal will talk about how to get the most out of the AUA and Conference, to help build your future from here. Using the AUA Professional Behaviours Framework and working in small groups, the session will provide you with real insight into how to identify your key strengths and areas for development. You will consider how to navigate the Conference programme to really make the most of what’s on offer – so that you can use the time away from the day to day to broaden and deepen your knowledge of the opportunities that the sector offers and make connections with others. Finally this session will suggest ways to help you to identify your career goals, and your next steps.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Learn more about what’s coming up during the conference and how to get the most of the experience
  • Identify your key strengths and areas for development
  • Identify your career goals, and your next steps

Speakers:
Sarah Shaw MAUA, Partner and Practice Leader – Education Practice, Odgers Interim Management
Gin Bhandal, Principal – Higher Education, Berwick Partners

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and Diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector


Working Session 105
Looking behind the label: mental ill-health in the workplace

The Stevenson-Farmer review (2018) “Thriving at work” finds that mental ill-health is an increasingly significant issue in the workplace. We will highlight the importance of thinking about mental ill-health and how to manage it in times of change and uncertainty. Presenting an overview of the more common mental health conditions, we will describe the signs to look out for in someone experiencing mental ill-health and consider ways in which experiencing these forms of mental ill-health might affect someone in the workplace. In groups, you will consider a work based scenario, and we will share useful resources relating to wellbeing and mental ill-health in the workplace. We will talk about the need for training in this area within institutions and provide some ideas on how to go about this.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Have a sound understanding of how, and for how many, mental ill-health affects life in the workplace
  • Know how to spot the signs of mental ill-health and know where to find further resources to deepen their knowledge
  • Have many ideas about how to make the workplace better for staff with mental ill-health

Speaker:
Verity Westgate FAUA, Research Coordinator, University of Oxford

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Equality and diversity | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 106
ABC, it’s easy as 123… but can you achieve an MSc? | The pathway from PgCert to MSc

Many of us recognise that experience is our greatest asset. This is an opportunity to hear from three colleagues with diverse HE backgrounds who have recently completed their MSc’s in Higher Education Administration, Management and Leadership.

The session will allow you to test your knowledge and understanding of topics pertinent to the HE sector. We will each give a brief presentation on our research areas and you will be asked to consider the studies, review key findings and reflect on the working practices within your own institutions. You will be encouraged to discuss and share good practice being implemented in other institutions.

The three research projects that will be presented are:

  1. How do professional service staff perceive and engage with professional development programmes?
  2. The barriers to progression for female students and academic staff in UK HEIs;
  3. An investigation into student attendance in Higher Education: can it be used to predict completion rates?

There will be an opportunity for discussion about how the PgCert, PgDip and MSc programmes can support your personal and professional development.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Gain a greater understanding of part-time postgraduate education and how it can impact your personal and professional development
  • Assess their capability to design and manage an independent management research project enabling the investigation of issues affecting administration, management and/or leadership in the HE Sector
  • Have an understanding of different issues which are relevant across the sector and gain insight into practical solutions which can be taken back to your institution

Speakers:
Oliver Cooper MAUA, Project Manager, University of Warwick
Edmund Hayes MAUA, HE Course File Co-oridnator, Newham College of Further Education
Ruth Coomber MAUA, Division Manager, Cardiff University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Research | Equality and diversity | Teaching and learning | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 107
Sketch-noting: creating impactful conference notes

In this session Katrina Swanton will discuss her own experience of using sketch-notes to capture and record the key messages from lectures, meetings and conference sessions. She will draw upon her own practice and that of other visual note-takers to discuss the benefits of a sketch-note approach, including supporting learning and memory retention (grounded in dual-coding theory); creating more meaningful and impactful notes; and simply introducing a bit more fun to note-taking. You will have opportunity to discover or hone your sketching skills and will receive many practical hints and tips to give even the most reluctant ‘artist’ the confidence to give sketch-noting a go.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the benefits of a visual note taking approach for meetings, conferences and lectures.
  • Appreciate that sketch-noting is about the idea formation, and not about artistic skill. You will discover that as long as you can draw a line, a square, a circle and a dot – you can sketch note (Rohde, 2013)
  • Use some of the tips and techniques shared in the session to try out sketch noting for yourself and explore how you might be able to apply these techniques within your own professional practice.

Speaker:
Katrina Swanton FAUA, Head of Quality and Enhancement, Edinburgh Napier University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Events | Teaching and learning | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management.


Working Session 108
AUA Attendance at the TEMC Conference, Australia

This session will provide you with an overview of the amazing opportunity awarded to an AUA member to speak at the TEMC conference in Perth, Western Australia September 2018. This fantastic opportunity should not be missed as it gave incredible insights into culturally diverse HE community and raised awareness of the exciting developments in Australasia and also reflections on what we are achieving in the UK HE sector. Be attending this session, you will have the opportunity to consider what you may wish to present at the TEMC conference in Adelaide, South Australia in September 2019.

Speaker:
Sophie Sowerby FAUA, Head of Organisational Development, Durham University

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 109
Building teams and communities with lean thinking | Develop a toolkit of best practice approaches for developing teams, communities of practice and minimising wastage

This interactive workshop will introduce lean management thinking with a specific emphasis on ‘Kaizen’ (Continuous Improvement), to encourage individuals, teams and wider organisations to work together proactively to achieve improvements which strengthen the organisation, create a better working environment for employees and lead to a united approach towards an agreed goal. Additionally, the workshop will focus on service excellence and how, by using lean techniques, you can make small changes individually or as part of a wider HE community, sharing best practice and improving the HEI environment for both students and staff.

You will be encouraged to experiment with the techniques introduced by the facilitators, share your experiences and thoughts on best (and worst) practice and develop your own personal toolkit of approaches which would work for your own unique roles and working environments.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Use a variety of tools to identify waste in their working environment and team processes. They will then mitigate that wastage through the use of lean thinking and the sharing and adoption of best practice approaches
  • Identify and implement best practice approaches for collegiate working within the HE environment as well as for team development
  • Use a variety of lean management tools to create their own Communities of Practice in order to share ideas and best practice techniques within their own higher education environments

Speaker(s):
Laura Roper AMAUA, Accreditations Officer, Bournemouth University
Susanne Clarke MAUA, Head of Service Excellence, Bournemouth University
Sam Waldron MAUA, Faculty Timetabler, Bournemouth University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 110
Outside-in: preparing for and adapting to change through environmental scanning

We will provide an overview of numerous business analysis models, which can be used to consider the environment in which your organisation operates. You will complete one or more aspects of a single environmental analysis tool to identify external factors, specific to you and your institution, which might influence ability to deliver against strategic objectives. You will discuss the impact of these factors on; the institution as a whole, your department, team and you as an individual.

Relative to your role within your institution, you will consider the current level of ‘change readiness’ in more detail, to determine strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for development. Areas highlighted for development will form the springboard for action, with the main focus of the session being exploration of innovative approaches to the challenges of the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environment in which we operate. You will explore tools and techniques used during change management initiatives and will consider how professional services can exploit this knowledge to pre-empt and prepare for change on an individual, team or service level.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Better understand the range of business analysis tools used to assess the internal and external operating environment
  • Use an environmental analysis tool to identify and understand the operating environment and consider its impact on their institution
  • Translate the findings of the analysis into tangible actions, to improve professional practice and change readiness

Speakers:
Rebecca Rimmer MAUA, Change and Implementation Officer, UCLan
Rachel Crane MAUA, Head of Corporate Operations, UCLan
Tom Pattinson, Operations and Transformation Manager, UCLan

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 111
Demystifying project management | How to choose the right methodology for you

This thought provoking session will cover some of the essential principles of project management, and how it can help you as HE professional to organise your work more effectively, before moving on to explore the different toolkits available. Using a mix of theory and group discussion, we will provide an overview of the more traditional ‘waterfall’ methodologies, as well as their newer ‘agile’ competitors, and will take a common sense look at the differences, benefits and pitfalls of each.

The session aims to provide the information required to make an informed choice about project approach, and draws on practical examples from someone who has lived and breathed the different methodologies in both the public and private sectors. It provides a valuable insight into the toolkits available to any HE professional striving to achieve their goals and make every project a success.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Describe the essential principles of project management, and how it can benefit HE professionals in their work
  • Recognise the alternative methodologies available, and appreciate the differences between them
  • Understand the benefits and risks of the different approaches, and choose when to apply them in their own work

Speaker:
Esther Bray MAUA, College Projects Officer, Brunel University London

Session Format: 
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Planning | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 112
Making the complex simple | Driving change to meet the requirements of the Office for Students

The formation of the OfS, and resulting regulatory framework, represents a significant step change to the higher education landscape. The OfS is focused on measurable outcomes and value for money, and coupled with increased levels of regulatory power means that the new approach to Access and Participation (condition A1) has had a significant impact on those working in Widening Participation on the sector. For those required to have institutional oversight, it can be challenging to know where to start and how to effectively manage change across a diverse range of activities.

This session will demonstrate how Brunel University London has adapted as part of a journey to improve institutional management of a diverse portfolio of Access and Participation projects. You will be introduced to the Public Value Framework, developed by Sir Michael Barber, the four pillars of public value (pursuing goals, managing inputs, engaging users and citizens, and developing system capacity) and 16 areas to consider. You will explore your own challenges and priorities, before a discussion on the potential for implementation and challenges.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Confidently discuss changes in regulation in relation to Access and Participation
  • Understand how to us the Public Value Framework within a Higher Education context
  • Reflect on processes to implement new frameworks, drive change and identify clear priorities at an institutional level

Speakers:
Nathan Kane, Quality Enhancement Administrator, Brunel University London
Robyn Fitzharris MAUA, Executive Officer to Vice-Provost (Education), Brunel University London

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Planning | Equality and diversity | Registry | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 113
Professional polymaths | Developing your career as a generalist in HE

This session is aimed at those who define themselves as “generalists”, through a discussion of how generalist roles have evolved and can and will continue to be of strategic importance to HEIs in the future. The discussion will help you identify your value proposition as generalists; ability to operate across multiple functions, synthesising your skills and experience to make impact in your current role, and plan your careers.

You will share experiences of common issues and barriers faced when developing a professional identity as a generalist, and together we will identify opportunities and solutions.  Using a “value-proposition” methodology, you will be able to start building a toolkit to help you purposefully develop your generalist careers within HE.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand how generalist roles have evolved in HEIs over the last 30-40 years
  • Reflect upon their own experiences as generalist administrators and identify the value they bring to their respective organisations
  • Plan how to develop their skills and knowledge further to progress their careers in HE

Speaker:
Chris Twine MAUA, Academic Registrar, University of Warwick

Session Format: 
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Quality | Equality and diversity | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 114
Creating better programmes

This session will provide an overview of recent enhancements to the programme approval processes at the University of Southampton. I will describe the drivers for change, including reference to the changing external environment, and also give an overview of a specific project created to support the Education Strategy.

The project, with its three strands: ‘Alignment to institutional mission’, ‘Effective use of institutional processes’ and ‘Identifying richer ways of involving stakeholders in the development of curricula’ will describe progress so far and any pitfalls already experienced. I will also include a visual overview of the Curriculum Manager system recently implemented at Southampton, including an overview of its benefits and challenges.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Compare the programme approval process in their institution with the process at the University of Southampton
  • Identify key challenges both internally and externally in the design and approval of programmes
  • Describe the role of a number of professional services and other stakeholders in programme approval

Speaker:
Sara Dixon MAUA, Quality Standards and Accreditation Officer, University of Southampton

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Quality | Planning | Marketing | Teaching and learning | Registry | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management    


Working Session 115
Aspiring Academic Registrars

In this session we will explore the roles and responsibilities of being an Academic Registrar or similar role in UK Higher Education. We will look how the role interacts at a senior level and the conflicting demands on the post holder. Through looking at two personal experiences we will explore the potential routes to becoming an Academic Registrar. Through this lens we will also consider career and professional development in general and you will identify what there next steps might be to developing your career further.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Identify what their next steps might be in developing their career towards becoming an Academic Registrar
  • Explain techniques for evaluating ones own skills and experiences against a potential future role
  • Explain the role of an Academic Registrar and its place in an institution

Speakers:
Stephen McAuliffe MAUA, Academic Registrar, University of Birmingham
Wendy Appleby MAUA, Registrar and Head of Student and Registry Services, University College London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Planning | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management

Working session two

Working Session 201
Supplier showcase
Curriculum Management |
How can a single source of truth help futureproof your institution?

The efficiency of your administrative processes underpin teaching and research excellence. In an increasingly competitive environment with students expecting more value for money than ever before, are you sure you can trust your data? Come along to this session to find out how Worktribe Curriculum not only supports CMA compliance, but also empowers administrators and academics to collaboratively develop and manage programmes and modules through their full lifecycle, providing a single source of truth.

We’ll introduce you to the Worktribe platform with a short demo of our curriculum software, and you’ll also get to hear how our clients have transformed curriculum administration within their institutions. There will be plenty of time for your questions at the end, so bring your best!

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Explain the strategic importance of having a single source of truth for curriculum information
  • Understand how curriculum management software has enabled institutions to deliver greater efficiency and cost savings
  • Return to their institutions with a better understanding of how effective curriculum management can provide the foundation for teaching excellence, both now and in the future

Speakers:
James Madelin, Curriculum Client Partner, Worktribe
Jon Hackney, Worktribe

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Quality | Planning | Teaching and learning | General administration

This session is aimed at:
Senior management


Working Session 202
Forging Career Pathways for Professional Staff | Using job families and Durham’s Realising Your Potential Approach

This interactive session will provide an opportunity to work with Durham’s version of the AUA CPD Framework called the Realising Your Potential Approach (RYPA) linked to a Job Families approach, which enables Professional Staff to map a career pathway within the HE sector.

You will have the opportunity to work with some of the tools that have been designed to embed the RYPA within Annual Development Reviews. We will share an overview of Pebblepad work books which are linked to grade and job family, and which enable staff to make personal self-reflections on their core skills and behaviours, highlight development needs and plan their career pathway.

You will discuss with colleagues the practical application of these approaches within your institutions and have access to a practical tool kit that underpins both approaches.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Gain an understanding of the AUA CPD framework tool as incorporated into the Realising Your Potential Approach developed at Durham University and see how this can be used within their institutions to underpin behavioural aspects of professional development
  • Be introduced to Pebblepad self-reflection tools to gain an understanding of how this can enhance individual professionalism, personal development and the efficiency and effectiveness of support staff.
  • Consider Job Families as developed at Durham and how these can assist with identifying core transferable skills, communities of practice, underpin talent management and form the basis for consistent and comprehensive professional development opportunities

Speakers:
Sophie Sowerby FAUA, Head of Organisational Development, Durham University
Claire Tindale AMAUA, Learning and Organisational Development Adviser, Durham University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 203
Tomorrow’s leaders | Securing the talent pipeline into HE professional services

As universities we pride ourselves on the calibre of our graduates, and the excellent career paths they follow after graduation. Yet as a sector we focus relatively little systematic attention on recruiting this outstanding graduate expertise into our own professional services as potential future leaders.

Without attracting those with ambition and drive into our institutions, the combination of an aging workforce, and an increasingly fast pace of change in pedagogy, technology and customer expectations, mean that higher education loses out to other sectors, and our universities risk losing touch with the client base with which we most need to engage. It also means relying on other sectors to furnish the leadership talent we require. Only with a talented workforce to lead our institutions can we ensure that our institutions are sustainable and fit for the future.

In this session we will explore different approaches, and their relevance to different institutional contexts. We will use your experience to identify the benefits of these different approaches to securing future leadership talent. The session will also provide a perspective from a recent graduate or graduates of the Ambitious Futures leadership scheme, to provide fresh thinking on the benefits to them, their institutions, and to the sector as a whole of paying attention to this important topic.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Have become more informed about the different ways in which institutions seek to harness graduate leadership talent in their institutions
  • Have achieved a greater insight into the motivations of recent alumni of the sector’s graduate leadership scheme, Ambitious Futures; and a greater understanding of the benefits participation in such a scheme can bring
  • Be able to articulate the benefits of engaging actively with graduate leadership talent development, for their institutions, and for the sector

Speaker:
Christine Abbott, Chief Executive Officer, Ambitious Futures Ltd

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 204
Self IMPROVement: Enhancing public speaking skills using improvisation techniques | Overcome public speaking fears and develop your communication skills

In this fully interactive workshop you will learn a range of improvisation techniques that will improve your confidence about public speaking and informal networking. Improvisation is a form of unscripted theatre that relies on heightened communication and creativity. Aside from performance, it can be also be used to promote teamwork, enhance presentation skills and ease social anxiety. We will focus on the application of improvisation for improving public speaking skills and will provide you with practical exercises to use yourself or with your teams. Learn to be more present, feel confident speaking in any setting and embrace failure.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Feel more comfortable in introducing yourself to people in networking settings
  • Use the ‘Yes And’ approach to make group discussion and individual brainstorming more positive and productive
  • Speak with confidence in front of a small to medium sized group

Speaker:
Jess Napthine-Hodgkinson FAUA, Research Support Officer, University of Manchester

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 205
How to dramatically improve student satisfaction, reduce costs and increase staff morale

It is commonly believed that to increase quality, we need to spend more money. For example, we need to employ more staff to make the initial student experience better. Or we need to create more teaching accommodation to meet our education requirements. In fact, quite the opposite is true, if we challenge the traditional methods of approaching improvement.

We will share a structured method which can be used to study and redesign systems, to help you to consider where to start to study and improve your own systems. By sharing results from our work in higher education we will demonstrate how the Vanguard Method combines systems theory (how to study organisations as systems) and intervention theory (how to change systems and behaviour) to deliver service improvements.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand where to start to study and improve their systems
  • Know why traditional approaches make things worse
  • Help others change their thinking to sustain change

Speakers:
Dr Owen Jones, Interventionist, Vanguard Consulting Ltd
Brendan O’Donovan, Head of Research, Vanguard Consulting Ltd

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Quality | Planning | Marketing | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 206
How to build a public policy unit (or not) and get it funded | Exploring the new trend amongst universities

We will explore the current trend of setting up policy units in universities, asking why now, what are they for, are they the best model for my university, how do they link to public affairs, and how do you get this area of work resourced? We’ll lead an interactive discussion on the pluses and minuses of different approaches and explore the potential synergies and/or overlaps with other functions (public affairs, press office, impact and knowledge transfer). You’ll work in groups to identify the approach which would work best in your own institutions before a short session on the arguments to put in place to sell the concept to the Vice-Chancellor and senior management and other key stakeholders.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the different model for public policy units being set up in universities
  • Understand how public policy work is related to, but distinct from, public affairs
  • Have some practical ideas for developing a public policy unit in their own institution

Speakers:
Nick Bibby MAUA, Research Press and Policy Officer, University of Edinburgh
Gavin Costigan, Director of Public Policy, University of Southampton
Olivia Stevenson, Head of UCL Public Policy, University College London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Research | General administration

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 207
For the Sector by the Sector: A new Quality Code for all

The underpinning advice and guidance to the Quality Code was launched on November 29 2018. As quality practices extend more widely across an institution the advice and guidance has been developed to be accessible to a wider audience.

This interactive session will offer participants an overview of the new Code, the next phase of development and the opportunity to look at the content within the context of their own institution. We will explore how to use the advice and guidance to map quality assurance processes and discuss how it can be used to shape good practice within an institution.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Have an overview of the UK Quality Code and how it is used across the UK
  • Understand how the new version of the Code facilitates a culture of quality
  • Be able to map their own area of work to the key principles of the Code

Speakers:
Ruth Burchell MAUA, Standards and Frameworks Coordinator, QAA
Cathy Shaw MAUA, Quality and Engagement Manager, QAA

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Quality | Research | Planning | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 208
Developing your coaching skills

This interactive session will introduce you to the basics of coaching and provide the opportunity for some hands on practise in core coaching skills; active listening, asking open questions and the fundamentals of the GROW model of coaching.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Have a basic understanding of the principles of the GROW model of coaching
  • Understand the barriers to active listening and open questioning
  • Develop their practical coaching skills through practical exercises

Speaker:
Tessa Harrison FAUA, Director Students and Education, King’s College London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Equality and diversity | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 209
Equality and neurodiversity | Building understanding between autistic and non-autistic staff in higher education

The Public Sector Equality Duty requires universities to “advance equality of opportunity” and “foster good relations” between people from different groups. With this in mind, how can universities support the inclusion of autistic people?

This session will examine a recent pilot project at the University of Edinburgh, which offered autism awareness workshops designed and led by autistic members of staff. Rather than explaining current scientific theories on autism, these workshops focused on the lived experience of being autistic and aimed to facilitate discussion between autistic and non-autistic staff.

You will have the opportunity to explore a space designed for the needs and preferences of autistic people, and try activities from the pilot workshop. The session will also consider the impact of the pilot project on participants and facilitators, and provide an opportunity to discuss the role that first person perspectives can play in equality and diversity training.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Explain some of the issues affecting autistic staff in higher education
  • Implement small changes that can help to create a more inclusive environment for autistic staff and students
  • Understand the social model of disability, its relevance in higher education and the institutional benefits of removing barriers to inclusion

Speaker:
Alyson Macdonald MAUA, Service Excellence Partner, University of Edinburgh

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Equality and diversity

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 210
Going for Gold (or maybe just Silver or Bronze) |
Developing a successful Athena SWAN departmental application

This session will explore why the Athena SWAN application process is relevant and why having the award is important, not just as a tick-box exercise but to develop real equality and fairness within a HE department. With the actual examples from the speaker’s own school’s Athena applications, discussions will encourage you to think about how you can work with your own departments to assess their equality and diversity environment within the application framework. You will be able to discuss what you already know about the Athena process and will be encouraged to share your experiences with the group. You will be asked to think of examples of actions for change you might like to develop, and will be guided through how to make your actions SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound in order to help build equality and diversity into future activities and create a learning and working environment that is ‘fit for the future’.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Be able to describe the features of leading and supporting change before, during and after implementation
  • Have insight into how to engage and support others through transitions
  • Have knowledge of some practical exercises that you can facilitate with your team

Speaker:
Donna Pierz-Fennell MAUA, School Manager, University of St Andrews

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Research | Equality and diversity | Teaching and learning | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 211
Leading and supporting others through change

The focus on planning and developing infrastructures to support organisational change can mean that the human impact of change is neglected. This session offers the opportunity for you to reflect on your current approach to managing the people issues involved in change. Through exploration of models such as; Bridges’ Transitions model, the Gleicher Formula, and the AUA’s CPD Framework, the session will help you to recognise, acknowledge and respond more confidently to the wide range of emotions and behaviours that colleagues may display at times of change. The session will introduce some empowering practical exercises that can be undertaken before, during and after implementation of change which you, as team leaders, can adapt for your own use back in the workplace.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Describe the features of leading and supporting change before, during and after implementation
  • Have isight into how to engage and support others through transitions
  • Have knowledge of some practical exercises that you can facilitate with your team

Speaker:
Jan Shine FAUA, People Development Consultant, Paullus People Development

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 212
From silos to synergy | Building bridges between quality and data

Data and Quality have both been critical areas of importance in recent years, and legislative/regulatory changes such as the OfS, TEF, Data Futures and Graduate Outcomes have caused many joint projects to start up, but often this work takes place in silos. We have identified ways that information and processes can be connected to; promote partnership working, enhance service provision and contribute to improving the student experience.

In this session we will share some of our key projects working together, what we learnt from them, and consider how these principles can be extended to a larger organisation. We will get you thinking about how teams can work more collaboratively, build stronger relationships, and strategically plan for a future where data and quality work together.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Learn how collaboration between two, once disparate, areas of work is becoming more important across the sector and why
  • Understand the benefits of collaborative working between these two areas
  • Take away ideas on how to bring these two areas together in your own institution and identify external examples and resources

Speakers:
Martha Horler MAUA, Data and Compliance Manager, Futureworks
Carmen Corral MAUA, Head of Academic Quality and Enhancement, Futureworks

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Quality | Planning | Registry | General administration

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 213
“No-one Fikas alone!” | Lessons learned from the AUA international study tour to Sweden

In May 2018, we participated in the AUA international study tour, travelling to Sweden and visiting HE institutions across the country. Discover how we were able to learn and share best practice in HE in a global context, and implement new practices and procedures learned from overseas counterparts.

In this group discussion we will share the key lessons learned, encourage you to consider how global engagement can help make HE fit for future, how applying new concepts to our working lives can help build a resilience culture; and introduce you to Fika! We will consider whether adopting the Swedish concept of Fika can help make UK HE fit for the future.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Recognise the benefits of global engagement within the HE context
  • Understand how learning and applying new concepts to our working lives can help build a resilience culture
  • Understand how working with colleagues outside of our immediate networks can help develop ones professional profile

Speakers:
Louise Bragg MAUA, Principal Administrator (Graduation), University of Portsmouth
Vianna Renaud MAUA, Placement Development Advisor, Bournemouth University
Faith Marsh MAUA, Assistant Registrar (Student Advice), BPP University
Karen Smallwood MAUA, Administration Manager, Anglia Ruskin University

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Events | Equality and diversity | International | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 214
Providing more value for AUA memberships within institutions

The LJMU Advocate team will share their innovative approach to enhancing members and colleagues’ CPD using monthly LJMU AUA Network Forums, including AUA CPD Awards and competitions, development activities and guest speakers.

This interactive session is for AUA members and advocates looking for ways they can increase member engagement and provide more value for memberships at their institutions. It will showcase LJMU’s internal AUA network engagement and development strategy, which was highly commended within LJMU Mark of Excellent Assessment. LJMU AUA Advocates will share how their internal team of nine delivers this strategy, each being responsible for a different one of the nine Professional Behaviour areas for the University.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Describe ways they enhance members and colleagues CPD using an engagement strategy aligned to the AUA CPD Framework
  • Demonstrate an understanding AUA members motivations for engaging internally with AUA activities
  • Discuss what changes could potentially be implemented at their institution to improve engagement with the AUA

Speakers:
Michael Monaghan FAUA, Leadership and Development, Adviser LJMU
Jayne Bryson FAUA, Executive Support Officer, Liverpool John Moores University
Janine Melvin FAUA, Work Related Learning Coordinator, Liverpool John Moores University
Steven Altham FAUA, Student Development and Placement Coordinator, Liverpool John Moores University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 215
Defining the future profession

This session will provide an overview of changing demands placed upon professionals working in the student and academic services profession, and the skills needed for the future. We will look at ways in which sector-wide changes may impact on this professional group, including:

  • A much more interventionist university management approach to aspects of the student journey
  • Active management of factors which affect league table or TEF performance
  • Additional compliance requirements: Tier 4, CMA, Prevent
  • Large-scale projects that technologically enable classroom delivery (VLEs) and support services (portals)
  • Greater interest from governing bodies, including new quality and standards responsibilities

We’ll explore the challenges this creates for the professional community, including:

  • The changing scope of ‘academic/student services’ departments
  • Transformation programmes and changed ways of working
  • Increasing demands on both professional and academic staff and what this means for that relationship

You’ll be encouraged to share your experiences and to help shape the debate. You can expect a mixture of talks, small group discussions and whole group participation, focused on helping you to understand and contextualise changes which may be taking place in your institution, and identify knowledge, skills and behaviours that maybe required in response to this environment.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Better understand the changing demands placed upon student and academic services professionals
  • Understand a variety of different perspectives on changing models for organisation and work within universities to best support changing needs
  • Think about how this changing setting could inform the professional development needs – knowledge, behaviours and skills – of themselves or their teams into the future

Speakers:
Susannah Marsden, Director of Student and Academic Services City, University of London
Hugh Jones, Senior Consultant, Hugh Jones Consulting

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Planning | Marketing | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 216
Aspiring Academic Registrars

In this session we will explore the roles and responsibilities of being an Academic Registrar or similar role in UK Higher Education. We will look how the role interacts at a senior level and the conflicting demands on the post holder. Through looking at two personal experiences we will explore the potential routes to becoming an Academic Registrar. Through this lens we will also consider career and professional development in general and you will identify what there next steps might be to developing your career further.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Identify what their next steps might be in developing their career towards becoming an Academic Registrar
  • Explain techniques for evaluating ones own skills and experiences against a potential future role
  • Explain the role of an Academic Registrar and its place in an institution

Speakers:
Stephen McAuliffe MAUA, Academic Registrar, University of Birmingham
Wendy Appleby MAUA, Registrar and Head of Student and Registry Services, University College London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Planning | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management

Working session three

Working Session 302
Systems Thinking: Tools for strategic problem solving in higher education | New ways of thinking about how to define and review problem dynamics

System thinkers have set out a range of methodological frameworks which offer value when investigating what may be termed ‘wicked’ or ‘messy’ problems. Some key systems thinking tools can be easily applied to higher education based scenarios, and you will learn about frameworks that you can use.

We will dissect a problematical scenario which is rife across the higher education sector, broadly around concept of student value for money and associated factors, focusing on financial, legislative, regulatory and socio-demographic issues widely applicable across the sector. This introduction focuses on how to use simple tools to visualise casual links between issues, including reinforcing or compensatory action through systems dynamics maps, in policy making.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the basic framework of some key Systems Thinking tools and how these can be applied to higher education administration
  • Think strategically about the value of interrelationships and differing perspectives, in order to champion the student experience
  • Understand how administrative systems within a university setting can be analysed, in order to reflect critically on where deficiencies within workflow systems lie

Speaker:
Emma Akinlusi MAUA, Quality Assurance Officer, University of East London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Planning | Marketing | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 303
Data in Higher Education: an introduction | Build your confidence to operate in a data driven environment; from numbers and data about students to subject TEF

Learn about data in higher education in this introductory, interactive session, where you will develop skills to better understand, and critically appraise, data in this sector. This session will provide an introduction to the importance of data quality, and explore concepts of data in performance review and the Teaching Excellence Framework.

Small group exercises will help understand numbers and how to count; interpret a data dashboard; and understand benchmarks and key principles behind the TEF. No prior understanding of data or maths is required. From counting sheep to cycling time trials, we use real world examples to demystify the vast range of data and numbers about students and higher education.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Better understand and critically appraise data in this sector, by understanding that you don’t need maths to interpret data and numbers, just the ability to think and ask questions
  • Understand how data collected in higher education is used for benchmarks, performance indicators and the Teaching Excellence Framework
  • Understand the importance of data quality and confidence in data

Speakers:
Paul Hazell, Evaluation and Analytics Manager, QAA
Jennie Walmsley MAUA, Data and Research Officer, QAA

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 304
‘Where’s my secretary?!’ | Moving from a traditional secretariat model to a functional based admin support structure

We knew we needed to change to ensure support was future-proofed and resilient but how? And with so much history of ‘it being done that way’? Drawing on personal experience, we will share the challenges faced and lessons learned in creating a new function based admin support structure and moving away from traditional secretarial roles. We will identify the key practical steps we took to transform perceptions and generate engagement and support at every level, from staff to senior academics. You will be able to reflect on your own experiences and discuss show potential approaches might work for you.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Consider and challenge the way administrative support is currently delivered in their workplace – is this really the best way?
  • Objectively look at ways to better use existing resources considering if the things that used to be important are still what is needed
  • Share and take away examples of best practice following discussions

Speakers:
Emma Rower MAUA, Administrative Services Lead, University of Sheffield
Russell Metcalfe MAUA, Resources and Operations Manager, University of Sheffield
Lindsey Crowson, Research Administrator, University of Sheffield

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
General administration

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 305
Managing distressed students

Whatever your role in higher education, this interactive session will help you feel more confident about talking with students about issues related to their mental health, and about responding to the anxieties, concerns and clinical risks with which students may present to you.

Through a group discussion, the session will start to explore your anxieties about responding to the increasing complexity and levels of risk that we are seeing, as a sector, in the mental health of our student body, and offer practical guidance for successfully supporting these students.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Feel more confident interacting with a student who is in a distressed state or who may present a risk to themselves
  • Put into action some simple, practical ways to maintain appropriate boundaries when working with a student
  • Think about possible ways to take forward further development for themselves and their teams on responding effectively and safely to students with mental health issues

Speakers:
Julie Rea, Specialist Consultant, Plinth House
Levi Pay MAUA, Principal Consultant, Plinth House

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Teaching and learning | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 306
How to write a book review for publication in Perspectives

This interactive session should encourage those of you who have considered contributing a book review to Perspectives, our journal focusing on policy and practice in higher education. We will discuss what makes a good review and how you might go about creating your own for publication.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Complete a proposal for a book review
  • Tell AUA colleagues in their local association about what the Editorial Board looks for in making a publication decision
  • Contact the AUA to suggest which books should be reviewed

Speaker:
David Law MAUA, Honorary Professor, Keele University

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management


Working Session 307
Digital Transformation: A change management perspective

This session considers the people, process and culture elements of digital transformation in the higher education sector, with a focus on understanding the needs of staff and students, and building digital competence leading to sustainable change.

‘Digital Transformation’ means different things in different sectors, however, there are some fundamental principles that are relevant across sectors, which we will discuss. We will consider some key principles including; customer-focused digital design, how adopting a digital way of working is about more than just technology and the value derived from using capabilities effectively. We will also look at how realising benefits requires a re-think in the way we work and commitment to changing many aspects of the organisation’s culture.

This session is delivered from a ‘business change’ perspective – people, process and culture, not technical delivery.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Consider what ‘digital transformation’ means in the higher education sector from the point of view of students and staff
  • Consider behavioural competencies that are fundamental to successful digital transformation
  • Understand the pathway to benefits realisation

Speaker:
Fola Ikpehai, Principal Consultant, SUMS Consulting

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Quality | Planning | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 308
Leading change from the bottom up | Leading engaged staff who are inspired, motivated and easily adapt to structural and cultural change

The Academic Services Unit (ASU) for the College of Business at RMIT (Melbourne, Australia) underwent a large scale centralisation of its administration services in 2012, resulting in a move to functional based teams responsible for all aspects of the student lifecycle for over 29,000 students across Melbourne and at global locations. Whilst this brought many benefits to process improvement and the streamlining of tasks, there was growing dissatisfaction around customer service provided across our multiple locations and stakeholders.

An independent review of the unit, involving stakeholders and the staff themselves, upheld this sentiment, with further evidence of staff being unhappy with their own career progression (or lack thereof). This resulted in realigning the Unit into cohort teams responsible for the end to end processes of the student lifecycle, providing better career paths, student focus and greater collaboration with global stakeholders.

We will discuss the successful change which has been held up as a model of good practice across the university, outlining change and engagement strategies used from a bottom up approach, lessons learned and the outcome of the change leading to a different and empowered culture. We will talk through our focus on professional development for all staff to ensure they were ready and supported through the change.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand how to lead a successful change to structure and culture within a complex environment
  • Understand the importance of staff engagement, empowerment and voice in any change process and learn about tools and techniques used
  • Understand the importance of stakeholder engagement and collaboration throughout a change process

Speakers:
Madelaine Sandall MAUA, Associate Director, Students and Programs, RMIT University
Joanne Austin Director, Planning and Resources, RMIT University

Session Format: Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Governance | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 309
Peacocks vs penguins | Leadership challenges in higher education and the impact of generational change in the workplace

We have presented a number of times on the impact of Generation Z on service design in higher education, from a student perspective. However, there are also significant generational differences within the HE workforce where we can see baby-boomers and generations X, Y and Z working alongside each other on a daily basis, but with very different expectations. So, what challenges does this present for leaders in higher education?

Using information and data from reports on generational differences and case studies from the perspectives of the different generations, this interactive session will ask you to:

  • Consider your leadership style and approach (peacocks vs penguins) and how this fits within your organisational context
  • Consider the challenges presented by different leadership styles across the generations
  • Consider how leadership styles could be adapted to meet these challenges

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Think differently about the mix of generations in the HE workplace
  • Think about ways in which leadership styles might be adapted to address changing expectations
  • Identify their own leadership style and approach and how this applies to their interactions with different generations

Speakers:
Simon Vaukins AMAUA, Faculty Graduate School Manager, Lancaster University
Claire Povah MAUA, Head of Strategic Development in Student Services, Lancaster University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Events | Marketing | Registry | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 310
How to go from good to great | The service excellence journey at Hertfordshire

We will take you through the service excellence journey at the University of Hertfordshire “UH”.  We’ll look at how the change project was taken from an initial idea to full scale university project in 18 months. One of the main aims was to translate the university’s values into real tangible behaviours to address negative comments in recent student surveys.

We will cover the details of the engagement led approach being taken to service excellence at UH, including the aims and objectives of the programme. We will share the barriers to change and the success stories of the initiative. You will consider what you believe good customer service looks and feels like, not only in your own organisations but more widely in your personal lives and what this tells us about the way we treat students and our colleagues.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Have a greater understanding about how to get agreement to drive forward change in their organisation
  • Recognise the barriers to change
  • Understand how to use the tools to effectively measure service excellence

Speakers:
Francesca Coxon, Head of Student Centre Info Service, University of Hertfordshire

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Registry | General administration

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 311
Partnerships: What’s the worst that can happen? | How to manage unprecedented events when working in partnership with other organisations

The session reflects on recent events with partners of the Open University which hit the national press, how they were managed and what were the lessons learnt. You’ll hear about how the immediate crises were handled, from press enquiries to broadcasting of the TV programme, and the incident responses used to manage the rapidly unfolding situation. We will explore the different activities undertaken to resolves the issues including: investigations; working with sector and government bodies such as HEFCE, QAA, Department for Education and Government Internal Audit Agency; the use of external professional services including legal counsel and administrators; strategies used to protect students and how they were supported to continue their studies. The session will then reflect on the lessons learned, how risks will be managed in future and wider implications for the sector.

We will give an insight into how those involved had to deal with a series of unprecedented events, how being resilient and intuitive allowed them to manage the risks to their University successfully, and how they managed to maintain the confidence of senior staff and stakeholders. The events explored will be linked to wider sector topics of interest such institutional financial failure, student protection, contract cheating and the use of agents, and how the lessons learnt can support those working with partners and more widely.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Identify and better manage the risks when working in partnerships
  • Develop their own strategies for managing incidents involving partners and protecting students
  • Understand the approach need to inspire confidence in senior leaders and stakeholders

Speakers:
Phil Berry MAUA, Director, Validation Partnerships, The Open University
Laura Buckman, Senior Quality and Partnerships Manager, The Open University

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Legal | Quality | Registry | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management


Working Session 312
The day after graduation | Articulating what we do to boost the employability of our students

Following on from the worldwide success of QAA’s development of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Guidance for UK Providers, QAA is exploring how providers articulate the initiatives that they offer students to prepare them for the day after they graduate.

This interactive workshop will look at the terminology around “employability” initiatives, how they map back to providers strategies and how that then translates back to students.

You will have the opportunity to explore your own provision in this area and discuss good practice about how you articulate your “bundle” of initiatives both within and externally of the curriculum.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the terminology used for different initiavives that support the employability agenda
  • Map their own initiatives around employability and share good practice
  • Increase their knowledge about the “employability” policy agenda and it’s impact across the sector

Speaker:
Ruth Burchell MAUA, Standards and Frameworks Coordinator, QAA

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Quality | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 313
Being Agile: being fit for the future | Finding innovative solutions for managing projects at the university

Future is an uncertain moving target, and there are different techniques which can help university teams to keep up with the changes and stay focused on the goal. If we take a look outside HE sector for the tools which have a good track record, Agile mind set and different techniques which support it can be a great source of useful practices for the university (e.g. EduScrum).

You will gain a general knowledge of what Agile mind set is, its key principles, and then will practice using some of the techniques developed to support it which can be applied to the tasks administrative teams at the universities face. In this interactive session, you will work as teams to choose a goal, before planning execution, using a Scrum Board. We will share additional open source resources which can be used in your own workplace.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Practice new techniques which help to bring the team to the same page about the goals and challenges to tackle
  • Formulate and prioritize the tasks needed to implement a shared vision of the changes
  • Reflect on how their the new approaches can be used in their team at the university

Speakers:
Yulia Grinkevich, Director of Internationalisation, HSE University
Maria Shabanova, Deputy Director of the Academic Integration Centre, HSE University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services  Planning | International | General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration


Working Session 314
Mindful transitions | Manage change through meditation and mindfulness

You will learn and practise a variety of meditation, mindfulness and breathing techniques to promote wellbeing, adaptability and resilience. The session will include demonstration, discussion, online resources and straightforward short practice sessions, with opportunity for questions and feedback.

We will consider the most comfortable and effective seating or standing position for individuals for meditation or mindfulness practice and to support stress reduction. You will identify where stress and tension may be held in the body, and practise short, effective and non-invasive mindfulness techniques suitable for use in the workplace to promote calm and to increase focus and clarity of thought.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Promote and support their own wellbeing and resilience through the practice of simple mindfulness, meditation and breathing techniques
  • Develop an awareness of where stress and tension are held and practise straightforward techniques to release them
  • Undertake a short mindfulness practice and a longer meditation practice

Speaker:
Amanda Ostermann MAUA, Senior Assistant Registrar, University of West London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Governance | Quality | Research | Planning | Equality and diversity | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 315
AUA Creating Conversations | An interactive resource to support staff development using the AUA Professional Behaviours

This practical session will introduce participants to a new AUA resource, AUA Creating Conversations, a card-based game which encourages critical debate and discussion around the nine AUA Professional Behaviours, centred on individual and collective strengths or, areas of development, relating to the AUA CPD Framework. You will try the game yourself and we will share ideas about how it can support your development in a meaningful way, along with providing valuable insight for managers on individual and collective perceptions relation to pre-determined development objectives. The resource supports individual, team and institutional development planning.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Demonstrate a greater understanding of the nine AUA Professional Behaviours
  • Discuss their strengths or areas of development aligned the nine AUA Professional Behaviours
  • More effectively describe how the AUA CPD Framework can be used to support professional development

Speaker:
Michael Monaghan FAUA, Leadership and Development Adviser, LJMU

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 316
Research, reaction, realisation | Drawing the lines between diversity, inclusion and professional development

This session will explore mapping professional development against diversity and inclusion metrics in order gain a holistic understanding of individual, team or departmental professional development.

We will explore some examples based on a mapping exercise carried out at Elon University in the United States, inviting members to consider the frameworks that emerged from the project to aid the process of mapping professional development against diversity and inclusion.

You will discuss scenarios and examples of professional development to map on the matrix provided, using the advocacy-impact framework as a guide. We’ll then consider ways to diversify and enhance our professional development to address areas for improvement/increase activity in low-scoring areas. Lastly, we will come together to discuss the findings and think about ways we might shift our professional development to be more advocative and impactful, in relation to ourselves, our teams, our departments and our institutions.

The purpose of the session is to reflect on professional development and the intersection with diversity and inclusion through the use of frameworks and a matrix.

By the end of the session delegates will…

  • Develop an understanding of professional development through the lens of diversity and inclusion
  • Be able to self-assess own professional development in the context of our careers and teams/departments/institutions
  • Be able to use the matrix to identify areas of strength and areas for growth, in order to map our professional development going forwards

Speaker:
Jordan Kirkwood MAUA, Apprentice Higher Education Manager, Aston University/Elon University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Equality and diversity | General administration | Other | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management

Working session four

Working Session 402
Developing and organising professional services for the future | Reflections on a journey to a new operating model

During this session, delegates can expect to hear about Sheffield Hallam University’s journey towards a new operating model for professional services, from design principles through to managing significant organisational change. There will be a particular focus on how to rethink the professional services’ operating model to improve alignment with institutional strategy and to improve the career offer for professional services staff.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Create a narrative that connects the organisation of professional services at an operational level with delivery of a institutional strategy
  • Reflect on how to create a successful leadership matrix for professional development and functional delivery, ensuring that there is a clear career offer for all staff
  • Reflect on how to create the agility and readiness to keep changing beyond the lifetime of a formal change programme

Speaker:
Libby Wilson MAUA, Director, Professional Services Operating Model Project, Sheffield Hallam University

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
General administration

This session is aimed at:
Senior management


Working Session 403
Workplace resilience and wellbeing | Are you fit for the future, and are you fit now?

Mental health problems have various causes and can affect performance in a serious way. Whatever the causes of stress, depression, anxiety or other conditions and illnesses, managers need to be reasonably knowledgeable about these, and know how to support employees who go through difficulties.

This session, aimed at managers and supervisors, is intended to bring together those who have experience of dealing positively and successfully with colleagues who struggle with mental health problems, and those who might have limited experience or themselves struggle to help their colleagues whilst at the same time, delivering good performance for their team or department.  Through discussion, we will develop a useful set of workplace practices which can be shared.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Appreciate more clearly the causes of various stress and mental health issues in the workplace
  • Use new tips for coping with stress and mental health issues in their teams or departments (and possibly personally), thereby developing greater capacity to deliver excellent performance
  • Use new ideas, learnt from others, about how to encourage and support staff who may be going through mental health and stress difficulties

Speaker:
James Craig FAUA

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Senior management


Working Session 404
Creating the largest Business School in the Asia Pacific region | Preparing our staff and students for the globalised world of work

The RMIT College of Business operates out of its Melbourne Campus, along with multiple global locations, including Vietnam. The School of Business and Management at the Vietnam Campus was only loosely aligned until July 2018 when it became a seventh school of the College of Business. With this brings a large element of change for staff in both Melbourne and Vietnam, with a view to bringing two separate entities together as one college and ensuring we are well placed for the future of global higher education.

We will discuss the opportunities this has brought for the college as a whole, discuss change and engagement strategies used, lessons learned and the outcome of the change. We will talk through our focus bringing staff together quickly and addressing some quick wins to get all parties on board with such a large change.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the staff and student challenges and opportunities of becoming a large global entity fit for the future
  • Learn about tools and techniques used to ensure staff engagement throughout change
  • Understand the importance of cultural differences in any change

Speakers:
Madelaine Sandall MAUA, Associate Director, Students & Programs, RMIT University
Joanne Austin, Director, Planning and Resources, RMIT

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Planning | International | General administration

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 405
Quality assuring academic partnerships: Beyond Chapter B10

The UK Quality Code Chapter B10 has served as the backbone to many, if not all, UK universities’ quality assurance frameworks for delivering degree programmes in partnership with others. There are, however, other regulatory frameworks and legal considerations that universities must be aware of when developing and quality assuring academic partnerships. The legislative and regulatory requirements can be difficult for non-legally qualified quality assurance professionals to fathom, let alone explain to international partner institutions.

This session will not be a legal briefing, but a discussion on how non-legally qualified university professionals can deal with legal and regulatory compliance beyond the Quality Code in relation to academic partnerships. The session will include an overview of the relevant legal and regulatory frameworks, their implications on academic partnerships, and sharing how these requirements are managed and built into the quality assurance processes at UCL. You will have group discussions to share your own experiences.  You will leave with tools and ideas to take back to your institutions for reviewing your own quality assurance and external compliance processes for academic partnerships.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Identify a number of regulatory and legislative frameworks relevant to academic partnerships
  • Demonstrate knowledge of how different colleagues have dealt with external compliance in relation to academic partnerships
  • Use certain tools to improve external compliance at their own institution in relation to academic partnerships

Speaker:
Anniina Wikman MAUA, Senior Policy Adviser (Academic Partnerships), University College London

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Legal | Quality | International | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 406
Coaching your job | How to use coaching to help you in the workplace

Coaching has been found to be hugely beneficial in workplaces in management and leadership, and the skills and techniques can be used in flexible ways to support projects and lead teams. We will cover some basic coaching methodology (e.g. GROW) but also some related concepts.

This will be a very active workshop, and the majority of time will be based on activities or discussions. We will practise techniques for establishing relationships, establishing clear expectations and improving commitment to plans from others. There will be discussions about major issues currently faced, and techniques for tackling. We will also discuss how to flex to different personalities, and consider influential factors in others decision making.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Use techniques to help create effective meetings and conversations
  • Create realistic goals and appropriate flexible plans
  • Consider how techniques can be tailored to respond to different personalities and situations

Speaker:
Hannah White MAUA, Head of Business Change (SED), King’s College London

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance  Legal | Student services | Governance | Events | Quality | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | Registry | General administration | New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 407
We shape our buildings, then our buildings shape us | What space planning reveals about institutional sustainability

We will examine a number of fundamental key questions which should be explored by decision-makers and planners in HEIs to help build and maintain a sustainable institution and improve the resilience of the sector as a whole. We will outline a series of paradoxes experienced at Solent University which we believe will resonate strongly with colleagues who attend; a generous supply to teaching spaces but with timetablers struggling to schedule all classes into available space; difficulties with booking rooms but a large number of empty rooms.

We will look at some of the questions that may be neglected when trying to plan for a sustainable future before working with an interactive case study encompassing a series of options requiring strategic thought and clear decisions.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand complex inter related problems of curriculum design, timetabling and estates planning, and their impact on the institution more widely
  • Identify key questions which need to be asked to help make wise investment decisions : particularly, where an academic development may have much wider implications for timetabling complexity and space/resource allocation?
  • Understand the value of integrated planning to make an institution fit for the future

Speakers:
Elizabeth Hudswell MAUA, Head of Estates Planning and Administration, Solent University
Laure Potter, Space Planning Manager, Solent University
Bryan Thomas MAUA, Managing Director, CPB Projects

Session Format:     
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Finance | Quality | Planning | Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 408
Band-aid, fire extinguisher, agony aunt or magic wand? | Developing the role(s) of the complaints office

Complaint handling has increasingly been ‘standardised’ in recent years, with the introduction in Scotland of a sector-wide Complaint Handling Procedure overseen by the Scottish Public Services Ombudsmen (SPSO), and a sector-wide Good Practice Framework introduced in England and Wales by the Office of the Independent Adjudicator in HE (OIAHE). As students become increasingly aware of their rights, how do we manage and develop the roles of our complaints offices/officers?

Different types of complaints may call for different approaches, with ‘first aid’, mediation, structural review, apology, explanation or simply a ‘sensible conversation’ being appropriate in certain circumstances. How do we empower colleagues, especially those in the ‘frontline’, to use the appropriate approach? And how do creative approaches to resolution of complaints sit with the adjudicating bodies?

Following a brief outline of the regulatory framework and the range of issues which might present as ‘complaints’, you will consider some micro case studies, discussing possible alternative approaches to the problems, and the circumstances in which one approach might be more effective than another.  We will discuss how we see ourselves, whether primarily as ‘firefighter’, ‘agony aunt’, or whatever, and which approaches come most naturally to us. We’ll consider how to develop ourselves and others to make effective use of the techniques which come less naturally to us.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand the broad regulatory frameworks within which we deal with complaints
  • Appreciate the range of different problem-solving approaches which may be appropriate, depending on the circumstances
  • Gain confidence in identifying ‘best’ approaches, and in supporting colleagues to try them

Speaker:
Jean Grier FAUA, Investigations Manager, The University of Edinburgh

Session Format:
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Legal | Student services | Governance | Quality | Equality and diversity | Registry | General administration | New to the sector |

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 409
The changing university | A look through the history of higher education in Britain to show that we do change; we are both resilient and adaptive

The history of universities in Britain is one of change. Although individual universities have spectacular longevity, that doesn’t mean that they haven’t adapted and changed through time. We’ll look back through hundreds of years, highlighting how the sector has adapted focusing on the diversity of different types of provider. We’ll look at how new institutions have contributed new ideas and how some of the highly contested changes are now taken for granted.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Engage with key aspects of the history of higher education in Britain
  • Understand the historical background to current policy debates
  • Understand how the HE sector has changed through history

Speaker:
Mike Ratcliffe MAUA, Academic Registrar, Nottingham Trent University

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
General administration | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration


Working Session 410
PhDs: Fit for the future?

Given the reforms at undergraduate level to address metrics such as employability, does the 80,000-word thesis of your PhD students meet the needs of the ‘knowledge economy’? PhD students might only be 5% of your student population (and 50% of them are studying in the Russell Group), but they are an essential part of your university’s research environment, and probably teaching many of your first year students, too. In a marketised environment and a limited pool of academic jobs, what do students need from their PhD, what do universities expect of their students, and how could the PhD be delivered in new and distinctive ways?

The session is suitable for all audiences; if you have no involvement with postgraduate research, through mapping and discussion, we’ll introduce you to the stages and requirements of administering a PhD. For experienced administrators, you might get some ideas for where your processes need to change in response to REF, employability, mental health and student funding. As a senior leader, the session will get you to think about how your postgraduate research programmes are distinctive and delivering for your university.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand how the external environment is influencing the requirements of postgraduate research degrees and their delivery
  • Identify what helps and hinders growth in postgraduate research student numbers
  • Identify key pressure points for postgraduate research students and how structure can support students along what can feel a lonely path

Speaker:
Richard Alderman MAUA, Assistant Registrar (Research Degrees) City, University of London

Session Format:      
Group discussion

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Quality | Research | Equality and diversity | Teaching and learning | Registry | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 411
Beyond the data | How influencing theory can be applied to improve your personal effectiveness in higher education

Key to developing the ability to be agile and responsive to the changing world of HE is the ability to influence internal and external stakeholders. There is now a mountain of data that can inform practice but beyond the utilisation of this data, the need to influence stakeholders has never been more critical to the success of professionals within higher education. This session will explore a range of influencing theories applied to the HE context. It will illustrate some shortcuts that help people make decisions, help you to consider how you can use stakeholder mapping to better understand your influencing challenges and provide practical guidance on how to adapt your influencing style when working with people with different working styles.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand influencing theory and how it can be applied to the HE context
  • Utilise stakeholder mapping to better understand where to target their efforts
  • Apply different influencing approaches depending on the working style of the stakeholder that they are seeking to influence

Speaker:
Mike Grey, Head of University Partnerships, Gradconsult

Session Format:
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | Events | Research | Planning | Marketing | Equality and diversity | International | Teaching and learning | New to the sector

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 412
AUA CIVIC (Cross-Institutional Virtual Interactive Collaboration) | Working together in a digital age

AUA CIVICs (Cross-Institutional Virtual Interactive Collaborations) provide our AUA North Wales and North West region an opportunity to work together, share ideas and good practice, enhance our CPD, network and develop our regional strategies and objectives.

The Advocates presenting the session from the NW and NW AUA Regional Network, will share information about the CIVIC initiative, highlighting the positive outcomes and benefits for AUA members and the participating institutions. The discussion will emphasise how the CIVIC concept can support any cross-institutional collaboration objectives and offer advice and guidance to colleagues wanting to set-up their own CIVIC. During the session, participants will participate in a live AUA CIVIC with AUA members from institutions in the North Wales and North West region.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the CIVIC concept
  • Discuss how CIVICs can be used to enhance cross-institutional collaboration strategies and objectives
  • Describe possible structures for a CIVIC and how Google Hangouts can be used to effectively facilitate them

Speakers:
Michael Monaghan FAUA, Leadership and Development, Adviser LJMU
Sarah Thirwall, Placements Manager, Keele University
Simon Vaukins AMAUA, Faculty Graduate School Manager, Lancaster University
Kate Burrell MAUA, Faculty Assistant Registrar, Edge Hill University

Session Format:      
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
New to the sector | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 413
Representing the AUA at the South African AAA Conference: My experience 

Interested in travelling abroad to the South African AAA conference? I’d like to share my experience and help you to apply. I will provide an outline of why I applied, how I prepared, practicalities around communicating with organisers, the conference itself and presentation I delivered at the conference. I’ll also share what I learnt from the conference provide the opportunity for you to share your ideas and prepare your application.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Consider this unique professional development opportunity
  • Learn about the event
  • Understand what to prepare, some hints and tips

Speaker:
Jacqui Mellor MAUA, School Education Manager, Manchester Metropolitan University

Session Format:
Lecture/Talk/Preparation of application

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
International

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 414
Yoga and the hokey-pokey | How to build a culture of change from the ground up

In this session I will show how I empower my teams to think and act differently to provide an excellent student experience by taking a back seat and ensuring that, as a manager, I create a culture of openness and trust. Believing that this is something they can only do if they are physically and mentally well and building trust in each other, my teams and I are always open to trying new things. I will talk about how a team that literally does the hokey-pokey together, has the confidence to embrace any change. You can expect to challenge your assumptions about what role managers play in creating a culture of change.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Understand how to motivate staff to contribute fully in the workplace
  • Reflect on their personal management style and how it encourages or discourages bottom-up change
  • Plan activities to engage and empower staff in the workplace

Speaker:
Claire Shrewsbury, Assistant Registrar – Student Central and Global Programmes, The Australian National University

Session Format:      
Talk/Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Student services | General administration | Other

This session is aimed at:
General administration | Mid-level management | Senior management


Working Session 415
Working with the CPD Framework and towards the Mark of Excellence

In this session we will share ways in which you can use the AUA CPD Framework in professional development at your institution. Learn how others have successfully used the Framework at various touchpoints within the employee lifecycle and how you can use it to progress to working towards the AUA Mark of Excellence.

By the end of the session delegates will be able to…

  • Learn how other institutions have successfully embedded the AUA CPD Framework into their professional development provision
  • Consider how you might be able to use the Framework within your own institution
  • Understand how you might be able to use this to work towards the Mark of Excellence

Speaker:
Jo Forsyth MAUA, Professional Development Officer, AUA

Session Format:      
Interactive workshop

This session will be of interest to those working in, or with an interest in:
Other

This session is aimed at:
Mid-level management | Senior management


 

AUA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2019 #AUA2019