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2018 Quality Evaluation FAQs – staff eligibility

By   /  April 21, 2017  /  Comments Off on 2018 Quality Evaluation FAQs – staff eligibility

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MIL OSI

Source: Tertiary Education Commission – Press Release/Statement:

Headline: 2018 Quality Evaluation FAQs – staff eligibility

Q. If a staff member is contracted to a TEO by a non-TEO, they must “fulfil a major role in the teaching and assessment of at least one degree or postgraduate-level course or equivalent during each year in New Zealand for three years bridging the staff-eligibility date (14 June 2018)” to be eligible. Does this mean their contract could start 13 June 2018 and go for 3 years, such as there does not need to be a prior history with the TEO?

A. Yes. For more information refer to PBRF SRG Consultation Paper 2: In principle decisions for staff eligibility criteria (PDF, 293 Kb). 

Q. What constitutes evidence of residency for a New Zealand-based staff member?

A. We cannot specify what constitutes evidence of residency. The reason for this is that there are different types of management practices, including systems, processes and controls, used by those managing the Quality Evaluation process in each of the eligible TEOs. TEOs need to record any decisions, and the decision-making process, on staff eligibility and keep copies of any evidence used to support the decision. This will be required if the decision is audited.  

Q. An eligible staff member can have a gap of one month between contracts. Are several gaps adding up to one month also permissible? 

A. No. Only a single break is allowed. 

Q. Are any of the staff members listed below eligible?

  • David finishes his one-year contract on 10 June 2018.
  • Julianne starts a one-year contract on 20 June 2018.
  • Henare is on an 11-month contract. One contract ends on 31 May 2018, and the next begins on 1 July 2018.

A. No, none of these staff are employed on the key eligibility date of 14 June 2018.

Q. Hana is working for one TEO on a 0.3 FTE contract, and another TEO on a 0.5 FTE. She is PBRF eligible at both TEOs. Who submits the EP? Who gets the Quality Category? Who gets the funding? 

A. Because she is employed by two TEOs and is PBRF eligible at both, Hana is referred to as a concurrently employed staff member. The TEO where she has the highest FTE should submit the EP, in this case the TEO where she is employed at 0.5 FTE. If she had equal FTEs at both, for example, 0.5 and 0.5, she should choose which TEO submits the EP.  

The TEO that submits the EP gets the Quality Category.

The funding will be shared by both TEOs – we will use the FTE recorded in the PBRF Staff Data file of each TEO and proportion the funding accordingly.  

Q. Mai-Lin left one TEO in July 2017 and began work in August 2017 at another TEO. She is PBRF eligible at both TEOs. Who submits the EP? Who gets the Quality Category? Who gets the funding? 

A. Because she left one participating TEO after 15 June 2017 and joined another before or on 14 June 2018, Mai-Lin is referred to as a transferring staff member.  

The second TEO submits Mai-Lin’s EP, because it employs her on the key eligibility date of 14 June 2018. The TEO that submits the EP gets the Quality Category.

The two TEOs may be able to share her funding. We calculate this according to the relevant proportion of her FTE contribution for each TEO. This comes from the information the TEO provides in the Staff Data file.

You can find out the proportion of an FTE applying to staff members leaving or arriving at a TEO in the 12 months before 14 June 2018 by checking the table on page 26 of the Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation.

Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation (PDF, 2 Mb)

Q. Sarah is employed at 0.2 FTE to supervise one or two postgraduate-level students, but not to deliver any teaching. Does she meet the substantiveness test for research?

A. Yes. Although she doesn’t meet the substantiveness test for degree/postgraduate-level teaching, she does meet the substantiveness test for research. This states that a staff member must undertake one or more of the following:

  • the design of research activity
  • the preparation of research outputs (for example, as a co-author or co-producer) that is likely to result in being named as an author (or co-author or co-producer) on one or more research outputs
  • the academic supervision of graduate research students.

The substantiveness test for research does not quantify the number of students to be supervised.

Q. Tess joined us from an overseas institution. Can her research outputs generated from overseas within the 2012 to 2017 period be included in her portfolio?

A. Yes. A staff member’s research outputs are not tied to their employing institution.  Any research outputs that meet the eligibility criteria can be included in an EP regardless of where they were produced.

Q. Ryan now works at our TEO but was teaching the equivalent of a degree-level programme in an overseas institute before 2012. He did not produce research outputs during that time. Is he eligible for new and emerging researcher status?

A. The key principle is that the staff member is undertaking substantive and independent research for the first time in their career in the assessment period.

Please refer to examples on page 21 of the Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation.

Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation (PDF, 2 Mb)

Q. Kahu teaches on a sub-degree certificate at level 5 that pathways directly into a degree at another TEO. Are these courses counted in the substantiveness test for teaching?

A. Yes. A degree-level course or equivalent is a course that leads to a degree or related qualification. Degree-level courses include those at level 5 or above on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF). Courses taught as part of qualifications, such as certificates or diplomas, that can form one or more years of study towards a degree are included as degree-level courses.

You should also keep a record of how the specific course forms one or more years of study towards a degree for audit purposes. TEOs should record any decisions, and the decision-making process, on staff eligibility, and keep copies of any evidence used to support this decision. This will be required if the decision is audited. 

Please refer to page 17 of the Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation.

Guidelines for tertiary education organisations participating in the 2018 Quality Evaluation (PDF, 2 Mb)

Q. I recently completed a PhD; does that mean I am automatically considered a new and emerging researcher?

A. No. To be new and emerging a researcher must be undertaking substantive and independent research for the first time on or after 1 January 2012. If you undertook such research before your PhD, you are not new and emerging. 

Q. Do I need to have a PhD to be considered a new and emerging researcher?

A. No. To be new and emerging a researcher must be undertaking substantive and independentresearch for the first time on or after 1 January 2012. The submission of a thesis is not a requirement for new and emerging researchers. However, if a doctoral, Master’s or professional qualification thesis is submitted as one of the NROs, it is expected that at least one other quality-assured NRO is also submitted.

Q. How do I work out if staff are considered to be “New Zealand based” for the 2018 Quality Evaluation? Do I base it on what percentage of the year they live in New Zealand or the percentage of their contracted working hours spent in New Zealand?

A. The first consideration is residency (being physically in New Zealand) in the 12-month period of their employment. This will be 15 June 2017 to 14 June 2018 or the 12-month period from their contract start date, if their appointment was after 15 June 2017.

If the employee is a resident in New Zealand for more than 50 percent of this 12-month period, they are New Zealand based. (It is important to note that the 50 percent is of the 12-month period, not of their working hours). If not, consider their FTE. If they are employed at 0.5 FTE or higher, they are New Zealand based. If not, they are considered to be based overseas and cannot participate in the 2018 Quality Evaluation.

Example: If Raj is employed at 0.3 FTE with a New Zealand TEO, and spends 0.2 FTE of his working time physically present in New Zealand, he would not be considered “New Zealand based’ and not be eligible.

The TEC’s auditors will review eligibility decisions made by TEOs, using key information such as employment period. The auditors will run a preparedness audit starting in May 2017, which will provide an opportunity for TEOs to discuss these matters with them. 

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