Within the general policy of the University and subject to the ultimate responsibility of the Governing Body and to the responsibilities of the Vice Chancellor, the Academic Council shall exercise the following functions.

1. Statement of primary responsibilities

Subject to the control and approval of the Governing Body, the Academic Council is responsible under the University's Articles of Association for the academic quality and standards of the University and the admission and regulation of students.

2. Terms of reference

Subject to the ultimate responsibility of the Governing Body, the Academic Council is responsible for:

a. The maintenance of academic standards within the University, and the planning, co-ordination, development, oversight, validation and review of the curriculum and all academic work of the University and advising the Governing Body on the resource implications of such planning;

b. Developing and recommending to the Governing Body strategies related to the teaching and research mission of the University, including (but not limited to ) strategies on learning and teaching, research, student support, quality assurance, collaborative provision, employability, internationalisation and widening participation; 

c. Approving and monitoring the effectiveness of policies and procedures to implement the academic strategies approved by the Governing Body under (b), and other policies and procedures required by the Academic Council's delegated responsibilities;

d. Providing the Governing Body with assurance that academic governance, including the standard of University awards, the student academic experience and student outcomes, are adequate and effective;

e. The making of recommendations to the Governing Body relating to the academic structure and organisation of the University;

f. The fostering and maintenance of close connections with industry, commerce, the professions, universities, other educational establishments and research organisations;

g. Establishing and overseeing standing committees of the Academic Council as required for the expedient execution of business, clearly stating limits of delegated authority, and regulating the proceedings of the Academic Council and its committees;

h. The oversight of all arrangements for teaching in the University;

i. The regulation of the academic conditions for the admission of students to and their progression within the University;

j. The regulation of policies and procedures for assessment and examination of students within the University;

k. The appoinment and removal of internal and external examiners;

l. The power to confer the award of academic qualifications, prizes or other distinctions including honorary academic titles as may be agreed with the Governing Body;

m. The development of teaching methods and courses;

n. The organisation of facilities for research and scholarship for the publication of papers relating thereto;

o. The nomination of academic representatives to external bodies;

p. Controlling and regulating teaching, awards, the admission of students, assessment, the discipline of students, and other matters relating to teaching, examining and research, through Regulations approved by the Academic Council under delegated authority from the Governing Body;

q. The making to the Governing Body of such reports and recommendations as the Academic Council may consider appropriate on any academic and related matters including those matters referred to the Academic Council by the Governing Body;

r.The exercise of other functions which may be delegated to it by the Governing Body or referred to it by the Vice-Chancellor.

3. Reporting

The Academic Council's minutes and reports of the Academic Council's proceedings shall be reported to the Governing Body.

4. Composition

Ex officio members:

  • The Vice-Chancellor (chair of the Academic Council)
  • The Deputy Vice-Chancellors (2)
  • The Pro Vice-Chancellors (4)
  • The Chief Operating Officer
  • The Unversity Secretary (Secretary to Academic Council)
  • The Head of the Medway School of Pharmacy
  • The Director of the Natural Resources Institute
  • The Director of Student & Academic Services
  • The Director of Library and Information Services
  • The Chair of the Research Ethics Committee
  • The University Director of Teaching and Learning

Members appointed by the Vice-Chancellor:

  • A Faculty Director of Teaching and Learning

Elected staff members:

  • Eight elected teaching and research members
  • Three elected heads of academic departments/schools
  • Two elected professors

Elected student members:

  • Four elected student members

Elections for professors and teaching and research members are held every three years; for early career academics and heads of departments/schools every two years; and annually for Students' Union members.

October 2018