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Strategic Plan

2013 - 2020


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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

The University Coat of Arms

- In knowledge opportunity

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Contents

Foreword

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The Current HE Environment

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Mission

8

Vision

9

Values

9

Strategic Aims Student Experience Research and Impact People External Partnerships International Engagement Sustainability

10-14 11 12 13 13 14 14

Supporting Strategies and Activities

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Key Performance Measures

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Appendix: Strategic Targets for 2020

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Facts and Figures

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Foreword by the Vice-Chancellor and Chair of the Board of Governors This document represents the fifth Strategic Plan produced during my time as Vice-Chancellor and/or Principal. And it is being published at a time of great uncertainty in the sector; greater uncertainty than at any time in the past two decades. The last four Strategic Plans all contained much detail concerning Edge Hill’s vision and mission, our key strategic aims, operating objectives, performance measures and timescales, following the conventional planning model widely adopted by businesses and organisations across all sectors since the 1970s. This is an extremely valuable exercise in terms of both process and outcome, but such an approach can have its disadvantages. No-one should see targets as fixed or immutable over a five- or seven-year term, and the need for constant review has never been more paramount.

It is also the case that excessive detail can sometimes diminish the effectiveness of communicating key messages and individuals’ capacity to assimilate these drivers. In effect each of the past four strategic plans had very short implicit messages; for 1993-1997 the priority was to survive and strengthen; from 1997-2002 and 2002-2007, to become a university and then acquire research powers; from 2008-13 to become a better university by growing both our reputation and our size. It is perhaps a mistake that they were never stated explicitly, though good progress was made in each case. The priority for the next quinquennium can be equally tightly defined – to demonstrate significant relative progress in very challenging times.

Any Strategic Plan must be properly grounded, and we have sought to give a clear understanding of the environment in which we operate and how that environment may be shaped in the near future in our vision for 2020.


EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

The power of many hundreds of staff, thousands of students and tens of thousands of alumni and other stakeholders, all pulling in the same direction, with the same understood, shared and owned collective goals is far less resistible than any strategy document and key to our success. We will continue to work to unleash that power throughout the life of this Plan. A simplified mission, building on the University’s motto and our sense of values, is supported by a set of six key strategic aims: the student experience (the University’s key driver); research capacity and impact; external partnerships; international engagement; our people strategy (the vital deliverers of our deliverables); and, essentially, how we will secure and enhance our sustainability as an increasingly successful university.

In seeking to articulate how we may achieve the continuing progress we aspire to, there is something to be said for looking beyond traditional process-oriented management theories. Effective structures and systems are vital to any substantial organisation, and they are no less essential here. But we are operating in uncertain, even chaotic times, and we must learn to thrive on, and to welcome and embrace, that chaos, to quote one of the pioneers of modern management techniques (Peters 1997). This can only be achieved by engaging all staff and all stakeholders in the development of the University, enhancing their understanding and freeing them to use their initiative whenever possible, sharing in and helping to shape the future direction of their Edge Hill. To use a favourite quote, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast” (Drucker 2006). Dr John Cater and Michael Pinfold March 2013

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Current HE Environment

Any Strategic Plan must reflect the national and international HE environment. Since the completion of the previous Strategic Plan that covered the period from 2008-2013, the University has enjoyed unprecedented growth, development and success, with sector-leading applications growth and recruitment, strong scores in the National Student Survey, excellent financial outturns underpinning substantial capital investment, the UK’s highest-rated Ofsted performance, and a rapidly developing research culture. But repetition is not guaranteed. The Strategic Plan 2013-2020 will be played out in very different demographic times, with the 18-21 age cohort in the early phase of a 17.4% decline in the North-West region. With a static Age Participation Rate, this means that a university will have to increase its market penetration by one-fifth simply to stand still.

And it will be played out in very different economic times. Whilst the banking crisis emerged not long after our last strategic plan was published, there was a significant time lag before the full scale of the challenge was realised and still longer before higher education, operating on three-year future cycles, began to be affected. Paradoxically, the decision to introduce full-cost fees gave universities another strong year in 2011 as applicants sought to pre-empt a near-tripling of cost, meaning that the first three-year cycle of meaningful decline for universities less strong in the market did not begin in earnest until September 2012. The implications over the triennium will be significant. For successful universities, able to recruit and retain to target and attract substantial numbers of ABB or better qualified students at a market (ÂŁ9k) fee, the middle years of the current decade could be a time of opportunity and significant relative, if not absolute, progress. For less successful universities, unable to sustain market demand or fee levels, recruiting fewer and less well-qualified entrants, vulnerable to competition from new, perhaps mass, providers, the vicious circle begins in earnest.


EDGEHILL.AC.UK

The economic imperatives mean that the sector cannot presume to be sustained by the state, and we may well see a less generous system of student support, with concomitant implications for market demand, later in the decade. Nor can we presume ideological support, with the current administration wedded to increasing competition, the marketization of higher education and the opening-up of awarding powers to both private and not-for-profit suppliers. Continued uncertainty in the areas of professional training, particularly teaching, but including social work and health could also provide a destabilising effect. That said, the traditional market for full-time, post-school, campus-based higher education will remain as the route of choice for a substantial majority. To prosper in this vital, but probably scale-diminished, market, a university’s brand and reputation will be crucial. This will extend from strong links with the ‘supply chain’ through to excellent marketing and public relations, a clear sense of widely-owned and articulated vision with realistic goals, an outstanding student experience delivered by committed and highly able staff on a sector-leading campus, to positive graduate outcomes.

Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

Away from the key area of student recruitment there are other new as well as continuing challenges. There will undoubtedly be a further concentration of Research Excellence Framework (REF) and UK Research Council funding. The Government has also been very clear about the importance of the research impact agenda, with a track record more difficult to establish for organisations without a significant research heritage. The challenge of being relatively late into the international market, and the down-turn in international demand in some markets following UKBA interventions are very real. However these issues should not prevent us from seeking to establish significant research and international profiles, and, beyond the key need to recruit and retain strongly from the UK and EU and provide an outstanding student experience, these remain core University aims. We start from a relatively strong position, but a position that has not been tested in a context as challenging as the one that confronts us. This strategy articulates how we will rise to that challenge.

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Mission

University’s Mission Statement

Edge Hill University – creating and harnessing knowledge to deliver opportunity

Edge Hill University will provide an intellectually stimulating, creative and inclusive environment for its community. Teaching and learning of the highest standard, supported by pure and applied research of international significance, will provide a firm foundation for its graduates, and other stakeholders in a rapidly changing world. An international perspective, knowledge and understanding, and a life-long capacity to learn and adapt, is the surest way of securing an individual’s and the nation’s future.


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

University Vision 2020

Values

Edge Hill University will: • Harness the creativity, knowledge and commitment of its staff to promote its values and enhance its activities. • Provide an outstanding student experience, underpinned by high quality learning and teaching, and further develop its strong sense of community. • Build its research capacity, and, in particular, establish research centres in the areas of public policy and the creative industries in addition to a postgraduate medical institute. • Strengthen its links to business and the region, and enhance student employability. • Establish both national and international partnerships, which will enrich university life, deepen our understanding of the world, and benefit the region and, more broadly, the UK economy. • Continue its investment in the campus and facilities to create an outstanding environment for these activities.

Our core values lie in our wholehearted commitment to our staff, students and partners, and our constant efforts to improve in all we do. Our approach is inclusive; we celebrate diversity, and will tirelessly strive to enhance the life opportunities that a good education provides for our students. The University will be both financially and environmentally sustainable, seeking always to reinvest its resources to enhance the student experience, its research capacity, and its engagement with the public and third sectors, business and the region, as well as its local community. We will be decisive and focused in all we do, and plan with a realistic ambition founded on our strong progress to date. The Edge Hill community will: • embrace challenge and seize opportunity • expect and celebrate creativity and excellence • act responsibly and with integrity • show determination, resilience, ambition and adaptability • work together to deliver our Vision

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Strategic Aims

Our strategic aims are gathered together under headings that reflect both our vision and values. They are: Student Experience, Research Capability and Impact, External Partnerships, International Engagement, People and Sustainability. We will measure our success in a range of ways, but attach a list of key performance measures which reflect the aims that follow.


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

To enhance the Student Experience the University will:

Provide an exceptional, student-centred experience founded on internationally significant research, pedagogic best practice, and personal commitment Seek to be ranked in the top 10 of mainstream English universities for student satisfaction as measured by the NSS Provide a focussed approach to student employability and entrepreneurship aiming to secure student employment rates in the top quartile/decile within the sector. We will enhance the employability of our students by enabling them to develop transferable skills and designing programmes which directly address employer’s needs

Broaden its appeal and attract a wider geographical and social mix of students Continue recent strong improvements in student retention and attainment, with results significantly above HEFCE benchmarks Diversify its modes of delivery, building its emerging reputation for innovation in on-line teaching, continually refreshing its approach to take into account current and emerging technologies Broaden and develop its taught postgraduate capacity and offer in all three faculties Work collaboratively with the student body and the Student’s Union to understand and meet their needs

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

To improve its Research Capability and Impact the University will: •

Further increase its research capacity through the recruitment of exceptional individuals and the nurture and development of its current staff Establish a pro-active approach to research impact as defined by the UK government Continue to enhance its research environment, through the provision of seminar series, national and international conferences, and the appointment and internal development of research leaders Selectively invest in projects to support new researchers, pump prime new initiatives and cross institutional research Broaden its pool of research supervisors, build a significant body of full and part-time postgraduate research students, and secure a larger proportion of UK external research grants

• •

Work to make our offer more distinctive and in particular will: - Establish research centres in the areas of the public sector and professional practice and creative industries with national and international impact - Establish a Faculty of Health and Social Care Postgraduate Medical Institute with strong links to regional trusts, hospitals and health professionals - Continue to develop the research capacity of the Faculty of Education with a focus on applied research and with a strong international strand Encourage other interdisciplinary research within the University to enhance its reputation and broaden its impact Facilitate and develop international collaborations Significantly improve its position amongst UK HEIs in the REF return beyond 2014


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

To develop the capacity and capability of its People the University will:

To extend and strengthen its External Partnerships the University will:

Continue to communicate with and listen to its internal stakeholders, and work to ensure that decisions and plans are informed and influenced by all Encourage an outward looking, pro-active and entrepreneurial approach from its staff Ensure the future of the organization by identifying, nurturing and developing future leaders Reap the positive business benefits of a strategic approach to wellbeing so enhancing staff motivation and engagement Enhance the knowledge and expertise needed to deliver innovative and high quality learning and teaching Significantly improve research capacity, the business skills which enable knowledge transfer and provide structured support for new researchers Ensure that services delivered are high quality, flexible, add value and are fit for purpose Recognise and reward strong performance

Establish closer working relationships with stakeholders including schools, hospitals, businesses, government agencies and local authorities, and use these partnerships to enhance our student employability, applied research and provision of continuing professional development Establish a clear account of its expertise and a sound reputation as a useful resource for business and the public sector Increase the number of University knowledge transfer partnerships and promote translational research to meet the needs of business and society Continue to enhance the cultural and intellectual life of our local and regional communities through public lectures, drama and music performances Work with our alumni base, using them as ambassadors and influencers, and to establish links to business and the region

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

To extend and strengthen its International Engagement the University will:

To build Sustainability the University will:

• •

Embed international perspectives across the Institution Significantly increase the proportion of overseas students in our student body Provide linguistic, cultural, pastoral support and services to ensure that international students gain the maximum benefit from their time with us Provide opportunities and pathways for UK based students to study abroad Build and deepen relationships with key strategic overseas partners which will enhance student exchange, research opportunities and staff development Continue to recruit staff globally

• •

• •

Continue to build a distinctive Edge Hill brand and outstanding reputation Refresh its academic portfolio at all levels to meet student and employer demand Seek to develop new markets and to diversify income Pay close attention to the recruitment and subsequent retention of its students Generate significant out-turns for investment Retain substantial cash balances to protect against a turbulent environment Continue to invest in the campus to enhance the student experience and our research profile


EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

Supporting strategies and activities The Corporate Plan is supported by the following principal strategies and their implementation plans: • Learning and Teaching Strategy (Academic Board, revised after 3 years) • Research (Academic Board, revised after 3 years) • Enterprise Strategy (Academic Board, revised after 3 years) • International Strategy (Academic Board, revised after 3 years) • People Strategy (Resources Committee, revised after 3 years) • Estates Strategy (Resources Committee, revised after 3 years) • Finance Strategy (Resources Committee, 5 year strategy, revised annually)

Annual academic planning will specify the challenges, expectations and risks involved for academic areas, but within the framework determined by the Strategic Plan. It will be the responsibility of the Directorate to deliver the aims of this strategy through specific implementation plans. The Directorate will also monitor delivery of the plan and report annually to Academic Board and the Governing Body. The University Governing Body will use key performance measures to monitor and measure institutional performance; these now follow.

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Key Performance Measures

Progress towards achieving the University’s vision needs to be measured through an agreed series of KPMs. To the right we have arranged these under six headings: Student Experience (with a specific set of KPMs for Learning and Teaching), Research and Impact, Partnerships International, People, Sustainability which map onto the strategic aims above.

Learning and Teaching • • • • • •

NSS and internal survey ratings Graduate employability Proportion of good degrees Student retention rates Student entry tariffs National teaching awards

Student Experience • • • • • •

Student Union NSS ratings Volume of SU activities (societies, events, etc) Organisation and management score in NSS Student satisfaction with campus environment % of Estate in condition A/B % of first year students housed on campus

Research and Impact • • • • • •

Proportion of academic staff returned in the REF REF ratings by academic return External research grant income Number of full-time PGR students and their completion rates Grant income from industry and commerce Quality of REF Impact case studies


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Partnerships

People

• • •

• • •

Number of active UK strategic partners (including schools, trusts and hospitals) Volume of CPD work delivered External footfall on campus, including to Sporting Edge and the Arts Centre The number of KTPs and other enterprise partnerships with external businesses Size of active alumni base

International • • • • • •

Proportion of total tuition fee income from overseas students Percentage of OS students at Edge Hill campus Number of student registrations at OS campuses Number of international research collaborations Proportion of non-UK academic staff Number of home students studying abroad

• •

Staff turnover Outcome of staff survey Participation in performance review and development Equal pay audit Sickness absence

Sustainability • • • • • •

Ratio of applications to places Conversion rates Scale of retained surplus Levels of borrowing Proportion of staff costs Cash balances

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

Appendix: Strategic Targets for 2020 As is clear from the discussion of the HE environment we live in turbulent times. It is difficult to predict what that environment will be like in 2 years, and rather pointless trying to guess its state in 2020. As a consequence determining specific achievements for 2020 is almost impossible, and of course a major hostage to fortune for those managers that will still be in the University at that stage. Moreover it is far from clear whether such specific plans should appear in a publicly available document. On the other hand a long-term strategy can appear vacuous when couched entirely in generic terms. Therefore we think it would be sensible to illustrate the Mission by a set of aspirations that are represented below and which may require annual discussion. We also recommend that the Strategy itself is reviewed every two years to ensure that it remains relevant.

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Learning and Teaching

Aim by 2020

NSS ratings Graduate employability Proportion of good degrees Student retention rates National reputation

NSS ranking within top decile for sector Employability within top decile/quartile for sector Exceeding expected benchmark from entry tariff To exceed HEFCE benchmarks Further increase number of National Teaching Fellowships

Research

Aim by 2020

Progress on REF Impact Agenda projected UoA Research Environment Postgraduate Community Interdisciplinary Research

50% of academic staff returnable in next REF Range of well-developed impact cases for each

Applicable Research

Doubling current grant income (in real terms) Minimum of 36 PhD completions from GTAs Institute for Public Policy and Professional Practice, Institute for Creative Enterprise, Postgraduate Medical Institute and Clinical Trials Unit established with national and international impact and strongly supporting prospective REF returns Develop practice based research expertise in professional areas, e.g. Education, Health and Social Work

International

Aim by 2020

OS students on campus OS partnerships

Between 5 and 10% of students on campus from OS Develop the Confucius Institute so that it is nationally recognised as a centre for Mandarin teacher training Seek to establish shared branch campuses for Education and Health in China Deep engagement with China and also the USA Operating UG and PG curriculum frameworks that have an international dimension Increase number of staff with international experience

International perspectives

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Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGE HILL UNIVERSITY

Partnerships

Aim by 2020

Employer engagement

Continue and embed the work undertaken under the current HEFCE initiative to secure external training contracts with significant private sector companies Extend the number and range of KTPs, with 10 new ones completed and a specific emphasis on the creative industries Extending the activities of the Health TEL team into other professional programmes and supporting on-campus learning

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships Distance learning activities

Staff

Aim by 2020

Performance management

Performance Review is completed annually for all qualifying staff A Customer Service Excellence Award (or similar) is achieved by all relevant service departments Accurate, timely, high quality and relevant staff related data is available in real time for managers Achievement of positive outcomes in IiP assessment, Equal Pay Audit and annual Staff Survey Achievement of all Key Performance Indicators as identified in the People Strategy and reported on in the HR Annual report All staff recruitment is underpinned by robust methods of assessment and selection testing

Excellent delivery Resource management Staff engagement and recognition Strategic delivery

Staff recruitment


Strategic Plan 2013 - 2020

EDGEHILL.AC.UK

Estate and Finances

Aim by 2020

Annual surpluses Cash reserves Borrowing levels Investment on campus

To be no less than 10% of turnover (reviewed annually) To be in excess of £25m or 25% of turnover Not to exceed £40m or 40% or turnover Major infrastructure to be completed by 2020

Major strategic projects • • • • • •

Completion of Sporting Edge development Provision of on-site residential accommodation for all year one students who require it Creative Edge Building and Institute for Creative Enterprise established in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences Establishment of Postgraduate Medical Institute and Clinical Trials Unit in Faculty of Health and Social Care Establishment of Confucius Institute in the Faculty of Education, and develop a strong national reputation in Chinese education policy Create the Institute for Public Policy and Professional Practice

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1885 Founded in

10,110

Student Numbers (Higher Education Statistics Agency 2012)

12,240 full-time

part-time

14,605

including those studying offsite and in the workplace

7,745

undergraduate

postgraduate

Sunday Times University Guide

Best in the North West for Teaching Excellence (STUG, 2013)

National Student Survey, 2012

Top in the North West for Personal Development and Assessment & Feedback

Top Four in England

for largest percentage increases in applications to study in 2012/2013

93.4%

(UCAS, 30th June 2012, refers to full, English universities)

of Edge Hill students find work or further study within six months of graduation, significantly exceeding the national average (HESA Destination of Leavers Survey 2011/2012)


Top two in the North West

for Graduate Employment

(Higher Education Statistics Agency, 2011, all graduates, full & part time, first & foundation degrees)

Applications have increased

from 4,511 in 2000 to 18, 867 in 2012 – an increase of 502% in the last decade (UCAS, 30th June 2012, percentage is based on a relative increase, taking into account the reduction of UCAS applicants’ choice of institutions from six to five)

Rated in the UK Top six

for Courses & Lecturers by students reviewing their experiences (Whatuni.com, 2011)

Top in the North West

for largest percentage increase in applications to study in 2012/2013 (UCAS, 30th June 2012, refers to full, English universities)

Grade 1 Ofsted

“Outstanding” in all areas of initial teacher training

(Ofsted, 2011)

3

THE Awards

University of the Year Shortlisted for

times

(Times Higher Education Awards)

in five years

2007/8, 2010/11 & 2011/12


Version 1.0 Published July 2013

Edge Hill University St Helens road Ormskirk L39 4QP United Kingdom Tel: 0(44)1695 575171 edgehill.ac.uk

Cs 1233 ehu strategic plan  

Edge Hill University Strategic Plan 2013-2020,

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