Undergraduate Programme Administrator - School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

United Kingdom
£23,406.00 - £29,107.00
Jan 11, 2021
Feb 10, 2021
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Full time starting salary is normally in the range £23,406 to £25,143 with potential progression once in post to £29,107

Band 500

Full Time/Permanent

Closing date: 3rd January 2021

Job summary

The College of Life and Environmental Sciences brings together the following Schools: Biosciences; Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences; Psychology; and Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences. This busy and challenging role is essential to the day-to-day administration of undergraduate teaching to students in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences including the production of timetables, processing of continuously assessed work, processing and calculation of examination marks. The post holder is a key member of the team which ensures the smooth running of the undergraduate teaching programmes.

The post holder is expected to provide high level administrative support and be the main contact point for UG matters having direct contact with UK and international students, academic staff and staff within Corporate Services and other College administrative staff. They are expected to advise the UG academic leads on policy and procedural matters and be responsible for ensuring that the School complies with all relevant University regulations. The UG programmes are three/four year programmes and there is a mixed portfolio of courses therefore the pattern of work for the student population is continuous throughout each week but also across each academic year as the student's progress in their programme. Therefore for this role the post holder will need to manage the student cycle between years to ensure that the student population are supported fully throughout the cycle of their programme.

The Programme Administration team across the College are front line staff and therefore have an essential role to play in providing excellent customer service particularly to the student population. They are also the key contact for supporting academic staff and as front line staff they are required to have excellent communication and interpersonal skills a professional, friendly and approachable attitude. Occasional weekend work may be required (advanced notice would be given).

Main duties

The post holder will be responsible for all aspects of the administration of the Programmes and will be expected to deliver this support service to the School.

Programme Administration
  • To evaluate, in consultation with the team and programme manager, processes and procedures during the academic year and identify areas for improvement and refinement. The postholder will be responsible for implementing any agreed changes.
  • Responsible for planning the timetable, in consultation with academic staff and resolving anomalies. They will be required to flag-up problems which have arisen during the academic year and ensure resolution in subsequent years; ensuring that student feedback is taken into account where appropriate. They will be responsible for the preparation of the first draft of the detailed timetable, ensuring that student clashes do not occur; that all lectures, associated practicals, problems classes and tests are timetabled in the most appropriate running order; and identification of appropriate visual aids and ensuring their availability as appropriate. Where timetable clashes do arise, the postholder will be expected to identify alternative times, ensuring the availability of enough appropriate resources and space.
  • To identify and resolve any problems, relating to the timetable, as they arise during the course of the teaching year.
  • To obtain student marks and information, ensuring that information is complete and correct. The postholder is responsible for writing to personal tutors, prior to student progress tutorials, highlighting issues that require follow-up; either still pending from previous tutorials or new information (i.e. persistent absence or non/late return of assessed work; medical or personal matters).
  • To implement and monitor transfers and leave of absences both in and out of the School, effecting deferments as necessary.
  • Reponsible for reporting and recording student attendance in accordance with UKVI guidelines and programme requirements.
  • To prepare and distribute laboratory practical guides and information packs; ensuring that all students receive the correct paperwork for their choice of modules. This will necessitate the chasing of academic colleagues to tight deadlines.
  • To establish appropriate hand-in dates for assessed student work and to inform students to identify student work handed-in late and apply the appropriate penalty as prescribed by the School; to ensure that continuously assessed student work is marked promptly by academic staff and that both work and results are fed back to students in a timely fashion; ensuring that all student work is tracked and monitored and that student absences from continuously assessed work are accurately recorded. This is an essential activity as inaccuracies in this data will impact upon student marks at examination time.
  • To take responsibility for preparing, updating and circulating student year/module lists and attendance sheets to appropriate staff as necessary.
  • To follow the University procedures for dealing with plagiarism. This will involve sending out letters to students, logging cases, taking minutes and writing short reports.
  • Have shared responsibility for production and presentation of student handbooks and maintenance of virtual learning environment.
  • Have responsibility for generation of module evaluation forms and reports to support the module evaluation process.
  • To service relevant UG Committees, including: preparation and distribution of agenda; note-taking at meeting; preparation of minutes and distribution to relevant parties and ensure implementation of action points.
  • To organise/assist with graduation ceremony reception.

Assessment and Progression
  • To provide advice, guidance and the resolution of queries from staff, students, Student Records Office, Examinations Office and other schools.
  • To identify examinations required for the academic session; to check that the duration of examinations are appropriate; to set-up new examinations; to establish necessary linking between examinations; and to identify any special requirements.
  • To compile the end of year paperwork, analysing the marks for each individual student, and ensuring that all relevant information is available for the Examination Board (this may involve consultation with various members of staff both within the School and other sections of the University.)
  • To attend the Examination Board; to be able to respond to queries from the Board regarding individual students and/or examination process/procedure; to take minutes and to ensure the implementation of action points.
  • To ensure that students are correctly registered for the appropriate examinations and resolve any anomalies. This process will require the postholder to use their detailed knowledge of each student's status and modular registration to match to the appropriate examinations. The consequence of a student being incorrectly registered for an examination may result in an appeal and/or litigation, depending on the outcome. To ensure that the assessment listings report is completed in advance of the deadline.
  • To create and prepare computerised modular mark sheets, collate, enter and check continuous assessment and examination marks to strict deadlines. (This will require the postholder to have good mathematical knowledge and substantial experience of working with spreadsheets and formulae.) To be responsible for the input of marks and recommendations into the University student records system BIRMS; checking that all marks, results and recommendations comply with University regulations.
  • To organise the preparation of examination papers; including the initial request for questions; preparation of the first through to final draft in consultation with academic staff; ensuring that all papers are produced to the high standards expected by both the School and the University; and ensuring the timely submission of papers to the Examinations Office in the appropriate format for printing.
  • To organise the collection, collation and distribution of examination scripts for marking. This will necessitate the postholder accounting for all student scripts, identifying and resolving any anomalies, and tracking scripts and returned marks during the examinations process.
  • To arrange circulation of assessment and examination results to students and academic staff, ensuring that academic staff are in receipt of the appropriate tutorial advice relating to their tutees.

General duties
  • Provide secretarial support to committees, examination boards and working groups as needed
  • Develop and maintain a strategy for retention/disposal of materials in the archive room.
  • To undertake other duties as required by the Programme Administration Manager or Senior Professional Services Staff within the College.

Required Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications, Experience
  • A good level of general education, educated to at least 'A' level standard or equivalent, along with demonstrable experience of administration ideally within an Education environment or able to demonstrate equivalent relevant experience.
  • Experience of working in a busy and demanding customer driven environment and the ability to provide a professional service with a friendly approachable attitude.
  • Ability to convey information accurately and politely to customers.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, both written, and oral.
  • Ability to create, maintain and manipulate complex spreadsheets and databases and to understand and interpret the information contained in them.
  • Numeracy. Ability to do averages, means, calculate weightings for assessment in percentages.
  • Fast accurate proof reading skills and attention to detail.
  • Experience of setting up and maintaining complex working systems.
  • Able to demonstrate advance IT skills using the MS Office suit of programmes. To demonstrate that they are able to learn new software packages.
  • Experience of dealing with confidential/sensitive data, knowledge of data protection, freedom of information.
  • Experience of servicing committees in a secretarial capacity.
  • An ability to work proactively, with little supervision, under pressure and to deadlines demonstrating the ability to work on several tasks simultaneously whilst using their ability to use their own judgement to resolve problems and to make decisions on own their own initiative.
  • An ability to deal with people and organisations at all levels.
  • Must be a team player.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of a student records system or complex database.
  • Ability to empathise with the student perspective to provide a high level of customer service.

We value diversity at The University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community'

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