"This report by its very length, defends itself against the risk of being read." – Winston Churchill
As the academic lead on an ICA, it is your job to interpret data, evidence claims and address standards while at the same time tell the story of the course/s being reviewed in an engaging and persuasive way. The narrative of your submission is vital to ensure that the required audience – in this case, the Education Quality Committee and DVC(S) – can easily interpret the message and receive the information they need to make their decision.
Be succinct: The committee will be looking for evidence and gaps but won’t have a lot of time at their disposal. Avoid overwhelming them with too much information and verbiage.
Consider your evidence: Think reflectively about what the data represents and interpret it for the committee. Present evidence that is relevant, valid, reliable, and representative of the underlying situation.
Answer the question: What exactly is the section asking for? For instance, if it is about orientation and progression, reflect on how students progress through their studies. Does the data suggest you have high attrition? Why? How do you monitor and support students who might be struggling? Are your practices compliant with the Student Progress Policy? Include in your narrative what orientation information or activities are offered for new students. If you are not aware of any, explain this and note this as an area that requires improvement. This can then become a recommendation. Acknowledging failure to evidence criteria but willingness to improve is better than ignoring or avoiding criteria.
Collaborate on the submission: The ICA process is designed to be collaborative. As the academic lead, you’ll need input from colleagues with different expertise, experiences and viewpoints. Establish who you want to work with on the review and collaborate on the submission as you reflect on the data as a team. Share the task of recommendation responsibility amongst colleagues who are best placed to ensure their deliverability.