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Appropriate Workplace Behaviour - Staff-Authored Texts Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) The following procedure sets out the University expectations for the use of staff-authored texts and other resources that are provided on a commercial (for-profit) basis, and that are required and/or recommended as study materials for students.

(2) This procedure does not apply to texts and resources authored by staff that are provided free of charge to students.

(3) The procedure is intended to support academic staff and Colleges in decision-making where a perceived or actual conflict of interest may reasonably be anticipated. It also reflects expected good practice in institutions across Australia and internationally.

(4) The procedure should be read in conjunction with the Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy and the Learning and Teaching Policy.

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Section 2 - Scope / Application

(5) This procedure applies to all Higher Education and TAFE teaching staff employed by the university in any capacity i.e. ongoing, sessional, contract.

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Section 3 - Definitions

(6) Nil

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Section 4 - Policy Statement

(7) See Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy

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Section 5 - Procedures

Part A - Overview

(8) Teaching and research staff are supported and encouraged to develop, both alone and in collaboration with others, materials to support excellence in teaching. Where these materials are published it validates and confirms the expertise of the staff involved and highlights the skill of the staff member/s.

(9) Where a staff member is likely to benefit financially from the inclusion of a particular text or resource in a required or recommended list of study materials for a unit of study at Victoria University, selection must include a process of peer review and approval.

(10) College Deans and TAFE Directors are accountable for the implementation and monitoring of the following process.

Part B - College Process

(11) Staff must declare any potential, perceived or actual conflict of interest in relation to texts or resources to be included as required or recommended materials in units, as outlined in clause (9)

(12) Such conflicts of interest should be presented with a recommendation to the College Learning and Teaching Committee (or equivalent). This should include a justification for inclusion of the text or resource in the named unit(s), and details regarding;

  1. the cost of the materials to students
  2. evidence of inclusion of the text in the library collection
  3. an explanation of the alignment with the learning outcomes of the unit of study
  4. evidence that the teaching team has been consulted
  5. a list of materials currently used at other institutions in similar or equivalent units of study

(13) The College Learning and Teaching Committee (or equivalent) considers the texts or resources in relation to the provided supporting evidence, and makes a recommendation to the Dean or TAFE Director.

(14) Recommendations may;

  1. approve the materials for required use, with an associated CAMS update as well as an update of the Unit of Study Guide
  2. approve the materials for recommended student use rather than required use
  3. require further external advice on the suitability of the materials, or alternatives for required use
  4. require selection of one or more alternate materials

(15) A record of the discussion and decision made is included in the minutes and kept for the duration of the use of the materials

Part C - CAMS and Unit Guide

(16) Following approval by the College Dean or TAFE Director, any required changes are to be immediately made in CAMS and updated in all relevant Unit of Study Guide/s.

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Section 6 - Guidelines

(17) Nil