From mid July until mid October Chris Donkin of DonkinITEX worked on a four-month contract to offer specialist, focused support for the Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) team at Boston College. Boston College was inspected in October 2003 and the consultancy role was to ensure that all aspects of inspection preparation were completed to a high standard. The contribution from DonkinITEX involved: (i) preparation of the Self Assessment Report; (ii) developing and implementing a more structured approach to course management (iii) supporting a total of seven new staff and ensuring that they were fully prepared to make an effective contribution to the teaching and learning process. The contract was offered because the VPA area had been unable to appoint a Curriculum Manager for over a year and as a consequence the staff had not benefited from curriculum leadership for some considerable time. This made the contract extremely challenging. However, the staff team responded very positively to Chris Donkin's intervention and the published grade for the curriculum area is satisfactory.
From late October 2003 until January 2004 Chris Donkin of DonkinITEX worked on a three-month contract to offer support to the University of Lincoln FE Department to help the department prepare for inspection in late January 2004. The contribution from DonkinITEX involved; (i) data analysis, (ii) validation of the self assessment report, (iii) audit of QA processes and (iv) preparing staff at all levels for the inspection process by undertaking ‘mock inspection’ activities. The main focus was to work with the Food Manufacture team. All activities were carefully planned and effectively delivered. The lecturing staff and University managers all commended the professionalism that was brought to the preparatory process. At the start of my 10 week contract, the Food Manufacturing team had self-assessed their provision as a grade 3. During the inspection in January 2004, the ALI inspection team graded the provision as good – i.e. grade 2.