Terms of reference
- The UniSA Foundation Committee
- Academic Board terms of reference
- Finance Committee terms of reference
- Audit and Risk Management Committee
- Governance Legislation Committee
- Teaching and Learning Committee (TALC)
- Academic Standards and Quality Committee (ASQC)
- Research Leadership Committee (RLC)
- Research Degrees Committee (RDC)
- Student Experience Committee
The Foundation Committee is a subcommittee of the Council of the University of South Australia and is responsible for oversight of University philanthropy policies and management and administration of funds received.
The University values the philanthropic support and relationships of many individuals and organisations who contribute to the education and research outcomes and life and culture of the institution and its positive impact on wider society. The University is committed to ensuring that these contributions are appropriately recognised and managed.
- to report to University Council on each of its meetings
- to consider matters referred to it by University Council
- to receive reports from (i) Division Boards (ii) Sub-Committees of Academic Board and any other committees that are from time to time established
- to provide advice to other committees of Council as required.
- to delegate certain functions to its Sub-Committees, to Division Boards or such other committees as it shall from time to time propose
- to perform functions delegated to it by University Council.
Role and functions
- to act as a forum for the debate of University-wide academic issues
- to foster excellence in teaching, learning and research in the University
- to oversee quality assurance and the administration of academic matters
- to approve proposals for the development of undergraduate and postgraduate courses
- to approve policies and procedures related to teaching, learning, research and student administration
- to provide advice on the development of the annual Educational Profile and associated matters
- to provide formal input into the corporate planning process through the review of priorities and parameters for the annual Corporate
- Academic Board Charter
Finance Committee is to provide expert advice to the Council both on the University’s financial performance in the current year and also the financial implications of any future plans.
- Review and monitor the University's performance against financial benchmarks established by Council.
- Review and advise Council on the University's budget.
- Review regular financial reports and, where appropriate, provide advice to Council on the implications of these.
- Consider and make appropriate recommendations to Council on any matters having a significant financial impact on the University.
- Advise Council on the short, medium and long term financial implications of the University’s Plans.
- Advise Council in relation to:
(i) the extent and adequacy of the University's insurance coverage (at least annually)
(ii) the Treasury Management Policy of the University
(iii) the University's borrowing program (on a regular basis)
(iv) any contracts in excess of $5m requiring Council approval.
- Advise Council in relation to the capital program and monitor the progress of major capital projects.
- Receive the annual reports and financial statements of the University’s controlled and associated entities.
- Exercise authority delegated to it by Council.
- Consider any matters referred to it by Council or the Vice Chancellor.
- 3 community members of Council with financial expertise
- 1 external member of the community with financial expertise
- Vice Chancellor (ex officio)
- Chief Operating Officer (ex officio)
- Finance Committee, through its Chair, may request the presence of other officers of the University from time to time.
- The Chancellor, while not a member of the Committee, has the right to attend all Finance Committee meetings as an observer.
- The Director: Finance Unit and the Director: Assurance Services are invited to attend all meetings of Finance Committee.
Established 2000; revised 28 November 2013.
A committee of Council will be known as the Audit and Risk Management Committee. This charter establishes the responsibilities of the Audit and Risk Management Committee within the governance system of the University of South Australia.
View the Audit and Risk Management Committee Charter (updated March 2011)
View the Internal Audit Charter (updated March 2011)
The primary function of the Audit Committee is to assist the Council in exercising due care, diligence and skill in discharging its oversight and monitoring responsibilities.
The Audit Committee shall consist of the following members:
- three external members of Council, one of which shall be appointed by Council as Chair
- a member of the academic staff preferably with qualifications in business administration/economics/accounting, appointed by Council.
- Vice Chancellor
- Chief Operating Officer: Resources
- Director: Assurance Services
- the Chancellery will provide secretarial support as required to the Committee.
- A Senior Auditor of the Auditor General’s Department responsible for audit of the University will be invited to be an observer to the meetings of the Committee.
- The Committee may invite members of management or others to attend the meetings.
- A quorum is reached if 2 of the 3 external members of Council are present.
- Terms of Council appointments will be as determined by Council.
- The Committee is authorised to obtain all pertinent information from management.
The Audit Committee provides open lines of communication between Auditors and Council. It shall meet at least 4 times per year. The Chair has the power to call a meeting whenever necessary.
Audit Committee should report to Council after each meeting. The report should cover the following:
- the Committee’s minutes
- any formal resolutions or decisions of the Committee
- information about the audit process and significant recommendations and results from audits on major issues of which the Committee believes Council should be informed.
Audit Committee has the power to conduct or authorise investigations into matters within the Committee’s scope of responsibilities as defined below. The Committee is authorised to retain independent counsel where required to assist in its investigations.
Audit Committee may undertake any matters as directed by Council.
Responsibilities of auditors
Audit Committee will select the external auditor for the University financial statements, where this is not provided for by legislation. The Committee’s selection is subject to approval by Council. The Committee will review external audit fees, and review and approve any dismissal of external auditors.
The Director: Assurance Services shall be subject to appointment by resolution of Council and any questions of appointment, dismissal, replacement, or reassignment shall be determined by resolution of Council on the recommendation of the Audit Committee.
Audit Committee will confirm and assure the independence of internal and external audit.
Audit Committee will obtain an understanding, through consultation with the external auditor, of the audit scope and broad plans for the external audit.
Audit Committee will review and approve the scope of the internal audit plan and work program, and will review plans for the resourcing of the work program.
Audit Committee will consider the coordination of the internal and external audits. The purpose of coordinating these efforts is to assure completeness of coverage, reduce redundancy, and use audit resources effectively.
Audit Committee will consider and review with management and the Director: Assurance Services:
- any changes to the planned scope of the internal audit work plan the Committee thinks advisable
- the Internal Audit Function Charter
- whether the internal audit function complies with the Institute of Internal Auditing’s Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing.
Responsibilities for risk management and reviewing audit reports and management letters
Council has established a Risk Management Policy, with the following responsibilities assigned to the Committee:
- Audit Committee will be responsible for oversight of the processes for the identification and assessment of the general business risk, reviewing the outcomes of programmed risk assessments, and advising Council as necessary
- Audit Committee will review the adequacy of the University’s system of internal control with management, the Director: Assurance Services and the external auditors. The Committee will prepare a periodic report to Council on the adequacy of the internal control system
- Audit Committee will review any significant risks, findings and recommendations made by external or internal auditing, together with management’s responses to them.
Responsibility for annual financial statements
Shortly after the annual examination is completed, the Committee will review the following with management and the external auditor:
- the University’s annual financial statement and the related notes
- the external auditor’s audit of and report on the financial statements
- the external auditor’s qualitative judgement about the appropriateness of accounting principles and disclosures
- any serious difficulties or disputes with management encountered during the course of the audit.
- Review annually the Committee’s charter and recommend update where necessary
- Provide the opportunity for external Council members on the Audit Committee to meet with external and internal auditors without management personnel being present at least once a year
- Report annually to Council on the Committee’s performance and compliance in relation to this charter.
Terms of reference
Section 15(1)(d) of the University of South Australia Act (1990) enables Council to delegate any of its powers or functions to a Committee. The Governance and Legislation Committee has been formed as a Committee of Council to assist it in the conduct of its business and to provide advice in the area of its Terms of Reference.
The delegation to the Committee does not derogate from the power of Council to act in any matter and is revocable at will by the Council (Section 2 (c)(d)).
The Committee may resolve not to take action on any matter appearing in its Terms of Reference, or exercise any delegation from Council and refer a matter directly to Council for consideration.
These Terms of Reference outline the responsibilities and operations of the Committee.
The primary function of the Governance and Legislation Committee is to provide advice and recommendations to Council regarding general Governance, membership of Council and the University of South Australia Act, Statutes and By-laws.
Specifically the Committee will provide advice to Council on the:
• Roles and responsibilities of Council, its structures and rules for conduct of meetings.
• The Performance of Council and its Committees.
• Composition of Council in accordance with the requirements of the University of South Australia Act (1990).
• Appointments to Council in accordance with the University of South Australia Act (1990).
• Standards of conduct and behaviour of Council Members in accordance with the University of South Australia Act (1990), the University Council Code of Conduct and ‘The Role and Responsibilities of Members of Council’ (including ‘Confidentiality’).
• Professional development of Council Members including induction, education and ongoing training.
• The legislative environment affecting the University’s governance, including the University of South Australia Act (1990), its statutes and by-laws.
• Remuneration of Council Members.
• Any other matter referred to it by Council.
Membership of the Governance and Legislation Committee shall be:
• Chancellor (Chair)
• Vice Chancellor
• 2 appointed Council Members
• 1 Academic Staff member of Council
• 1 Professional Staff member of Council
• Student President
Appointments to all Committees are made by Council for the period of a Council Member’s term of office. The Committee also has the capacity to include one additional member who is not a member of the University Council to be part of the membership.
The Committee will meet at least 2 times per annum. Meetings of the Committee may be called by the Chancellor (as Chair of the Committee) outside of this cycle, should the need arise to discuss matters related to it its Terms of Reference
The Governance and Legislation Committee will report to Council on its activities at the next available Council meeting. The report shall include a summary of resolutions of the meeting (including any items requiring a resolution or endorsement of Council) and a copy of the minutes of the meeting.
The Council has no standing delegations. It may from time to time delegate tasks (in accordance with the University of South Australia Act or otherwise) to the Governance and Legislation Committee.
The Council has determined that (unless it decides otherwise) for the purposes of Section 10(3) and Section 10(3) (5) of the University of South Australia Act (1990), the Governance and Legislation Committee will be deemed the ‘Selection Committee’.
University of South Australia Act (1990)
Attachments to Terms of Reference
Current Membership of the Governance and Legislation Committee
Responsibility and Review
Responsible Officer: Director Council Services and Chancellery
History: Endorsed by the Governance and Legislation Committee 24 August 2009
Endorsed by Council: 27 August 2009
Terms of reference
- To develop for Academic Board approval a Teaching and Learning Strategy that encompasses equity student participation objectives.
- To develop for Academic Board approval, an annual plan that delivers on the University’s teaching and learning strategic objectives and identifies priorities.
- To provide for Academic Board consideration, an annual monitoring report on the Teaching and Learning Strategy.
- Provide a forum for the discussion of teaching and learning issues.
- Oversee processes to allocate teaching awards and grants.
- To advise the Vice Chancellor, Deputy and Pro Vice Chancellors on measures to improve the quality and status of teaching and learning within the University.
- To make recommendations to the Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic on appropriate staff development opportunities to enhance the quality of teaching.
- To receive, monitor, advise and note good practice on Divisional Teaching and Learning plans with a view to assisting Divisions meet corporate goals and spread good practice.
- To disseminate information to Division Executives and Division Teaching and Learning Committees.
- Consult broadly with the academic community on strategic issues affecting teaching and learning.
- To advise the Vice Chancellor, Deputy and Pro Vice Chancellors and Academic Board on state, national and international trends and directions in teaching and learning, especially technology enhanced learning.
- To liaise with and provide advice when necessary to Research committees, the Student Experience and Academic Standards and Quality Committees.
- To advise on information published in relation to the quality and standards of the University’s taught programs and the student experience.
- To contribute regularly to the review of academic policy and statutes and recommend changes or modification to Academic Standards and Quality Committee.
- Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic (Chair)
- Dean: Teaching and Learning (EAS)
- Dean: Teaching and Learning (BUE)
- Dean: Teaching and Learning (ITEE)
- Dean: Health and Clinical Education (HSC)
- Associate Dean: Research, Teaching and Learning (CRE)
- Director: Student and Academic Services
- Director: Learning and Teaching Unit
- Director: Information Strategy and Technology Services
- University Librarian
- Coordinator Indigenous Student Services
- 1 x Division Pro Vice Chancellor
- Representative of elected members of Academic Board
- UniLife President
- Deputy Vice Chancellor: Research and Innovation (observer)
- Executive Officer (non-voting)
The Committee will meet quarterly.
Terms of reference
- To recommend to Academic Board approval of new coursework programs and amendments to existing coursework programs at undergraduate and
postgraduate levels on the basis of:
- the identified program profile of the University
- the business case for the establishment and sustained operation of the program
- the quality of academic outcomes as expressed through the qualities of a UniSA graduate
- demonstrated support for the program from key stakeholders
- To establish, as required, expert review panels to assist with the conduct of business
- To carry out the development and review of quality assurance and improvement policies in relation to undergraduate and postgraduate coursework programs and to provide recommendations on such policies to Academic Board
- To consult with Teaching and Learning Committee (TALC) on teaching and learning issues
- To foster course and program development within the strategic directions of the University
- To report to Academic Board at least twice a year
- To receive reports from the Divisions in relation to:
-devolved aspects of the program amendment processes
- summaries of program evaluation activity
- To review annually the work and processes of ASQC.
For ASQC to discharge its proposed responsibilities, it requires members who will provide disinterested intellectual rigour, and expert advice or have the ability to secure such advice. Broad, representational, membership will not achieve this. ASQC membership needs to encompass knowledge, understanding and experience about:
- the University’s strategic intent and priorities
- academic profile and policy issues, standards and their assurance frameworks
- factors impacting on the viability of programs and their impact on university resources and services
- relevant policies, procedures and information resources.
In order to meet the range of expertise the membership is as follows:
- Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic (Chair)
- 1 senior academic staff member from each Division
- Director: Student and Academic Services (or nominee)
- Director: Learning and Teaching Unit (or nominee)
- Director: Library Services
- Executive Officer (non voting).
In order to maintain the balance of expertise, alternates must have similar expertise and standing as the person they are replacing.
Academic or administrative staff with additional expertise in, for example, finance, transnational operations, flexible delivery, online education may also be invited to attend, depending on committee business.
Membership of academic staff is by invitation of the Vice Chancellor, on the recommendation of the Chair of Academic Board in consultation with the Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic. Suggestions for membership on the basis of criteria which stress the demonstrable commitment, leadership and credentials in academic/education evaluation and quality assurance. These are likely to be senior staff. However, for capability building in the University, other staff should also be considered. For continuity, membership will be for up to 2 years, with 50 per cent of the invited academic members retiring from the Committee after 1 year and 50 per cent after 2 years. All may be re-invited to be members, on a performance basis.
The role of the Research Leadership Committee (RLC) is to provide research leadership to the University community and strategic advice to the Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President: Research & Innovation and Senior Management Group regarding the development and effective management of research initiatives and the achievement of the University’s strategic research objectives.Terms of reference
Terms of Reference
- To promote research productivity in the University, which delivers solutions to real-world problems, based on disciplinary and trans-disciplinary excellence;
- To encourage scholarship and to enable growth in the University’s research capabilities and capacity;
- To provide leadership to the University’s research community in the development and implementation of research themes;
- To advise the Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President: Research and Innovation on the allocation of funds to research programs which enhance the University’s research quality, relevance and performance;
- To champion the enhancement of the University’s research culture and enterprise activities;
- To facilitate and strengthen the link between teaching and research;
- To develop productive research relationships, partnerships and collaborations with industry, government and the wider community;
- To provide input into the corporate planning and review processes.
Frequency of Meetings
RLC will meet on a monthly basis between February and December each year.
- As a subcommittee of Academic Board, RLC will consider and provide advice on matters referred to it by University Committees such as the University Council and Academic Board, i.e. state, national and international research trends, policies and strategies and their likely effect on the University;
- RLC will provide an annual report of its activities to Academic Board.
- Chair: Deputy Vice Chancellor: Research and Innovation
- Dean of Graduate Studies
- Director: Research and Innovation Services
- Deans: Research (4)
- Institute Directors (6)
- Director: Centre for Regional Engagement
- Representatives from:
- Heads of Schools (1)
- Centre Directors (2)
- Director: Library Services
- Deputy Director: Research and Innovation (2)
- Portfolio Manager: Research and Innovation
The Research Degrees Committee (RDC), a subcommittee of Academic Board, chaired by the Dean of Graduate Studies, has the delegated authority in matters relating to the management and administration of research degrees. Through RDC, the University is responsible for establishing a policy and quality assurance framework for the management of research degree programs, including academic regulations for those programs.
In line with the relevant academic regulations, RDC is responsible for making decisions on each candidate's completion of all requirements for the award of a research degree and for recommending to Council that the degree be awarded. RDC ensures a structured program (Research Education Support Activities) for research degree students is available each year. The Graduate Research Centre is responsible for administering the decisions of the Research Degrees Committee.
Research Degrees Committee has a number of sub-groups to deal with monitoring, approval and development activities.
Terms of reference
The term Dean: Research also refers to their equivalents in Divisions, Institutes and CRE.
Policy and context
- To be responsible to the Academic Board for the conduct of all matters pertaining to higher degrees by research
- To advise the Academic Board on the development and modification of the policies governing research degrees
- To perform functions and consider matters referred to it by the Academic Board
- To provide strategic advice in relation to the setting and attainment of institutional targets for research education and training activities and the development of research supervision capacity
- To provide advice and direction to the key stakeholders in research education across the University to ensure the achievement of the University’s strategic plans and targets for research education and training.
Research program development
- To consider proposals and submissions from Divisions and Institutes for developing new research degree programs and to make recommendations thereon to Academic Board
- To consider proposals and submissions from Divisions and Institutes for amendments to research degree programs and to make recommendations thereon to Academic Board
- To manage and monitor quality assurance standards under Policy RES15.0 Quality Assurance Framework for Research Degrees.
- To develop and monitor supervisor capacity and supervision standards.
- To oversee membership of the Register of Current Higher Degree by Research Supervisors in accordance with policy RES 18.0 Register of Current Higher Degree by Research Supervisors
- To monitor issues of equity and social inclusion consistent with the University’s mission.
Research student administration
- To approve the distribution of postgraduate research scholarships.
- To review the progress of research students annually, including monitoring attainment of the Research Degree Graduate Qualities.
- To approve examination processes and monitor completions.
- Under authority delegated by the Academic Board:
- to certify to the Council the completion of the requirements for research degrees;
- to recommend to the Council that the appropriate awards be conferred; and
- to notify the Academic Board of the completion of the requirements for research degrees.
To report to the Academic Board at least twice each year on RDC’s work plans.
Frequency of Meetings
RDC will meet monthly between February and December.
- Dean of Graduate Studies (Chair)
- Deputy-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation)
- Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic)
- Deans: Research
- Equity representative nominated by the Vice Chancellor
- Two research students nominated by UniLife
- Manager: Graduate Research Centre
- Director: Research & Innovation Services, or nominee
- Director: Student and Academic Services, or nominee
- Director: Learning & Teaching Unit, or nominee
- University Librarian, or nominee
- Examinations and HDR Academic Quality Panel
- HDR Recruitment Working Group
- Research Education and Supervisor Development Steering Group
- Deans of Graduate Studies and Deans: Research Strategy Group
- Working parties, as required
- The Executive Officer (non-voting) will be a member of the Graduate Research Centre.
Terms of reference
- In consultation with the Teaching and Learning Committee, prepare for Academic Board approval, an annual student experience action plan.
- To review on an annual basis all data relating to student experience, including by equity and cohort group , and benchmark it against the top five performing universities in Australia.
- In consultation with the Divisions, to review and approve student survey instruments and policies for their use.
- To ensure that student services are aligned to the University’s strategic priorities and facilitate University wide cooperation in relation to the student experience including consideration of the needs of students in equity groups.
- To ensure students receive appropriate responses to their feedback.
- To develop and monitor actions to enhance student employability.
- To make recommendations to Senior Management Group around capital works for student social spaces.
- To monitor aspects of the Teaching and Learning strategy as may be delegated to it by Teaching and Learning Committee.
- To receive, monitor, advise and promote good practice in Divisional student experience action plans
- To liaise with and provide advice to the Teaching and Learning Committee and Academic Standards and Quality Committee as required.
Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic (Chair)
Pro Vice Chancellor: International and Development
Director Student and Academic Services
Director Information Strategy and Technology Services
Director Facilities Management Unit
Dean: Teaching and Learning (EAS)
Dean: Teaching and Learning (BUE)
Dean: Teaching and Learning (ITEE)
Associate Dean: Teaching and Learning (CRE)
Dean: Health and Clinical Education (HSC)
Director Learning and Teaching Unit
Coordinator Indigenous Student Services
Dean Graduate Studies
Representative of elected members Academic Board
Executive Officer (non-voting)
Director Planning and Institutional Performance
Nominee of UniLife
Director: Service Improvement
Deputy Director: Student Learning Services
Team Leader (Career Services)
Student Experience Coordinator
The committee will meet four times per year