UKOLN AHDS QA Focus: Impact Analysis


The aim of this page is two-fold:

  1. To provide a brief summary of the impact made by the JISC-funded QA Focus project.
  2. To provide an illustration of an impact analysis report which can be applied in other areas of work

About This Impact Analysis Work

As described elsewhere the QA Focus work has been positively evaluated. However in addition to an evaluation of the QA Focus deliverables there is also a need to report on the impact which these deliverables have had. This page provides a summary of the impact of the QA Focus work.

Impact On JISC: QA Framework

The QA Focus work developed a quality assurance framework which is intended to help to ensure that project deliverables funded under JISC's development programmes are widely accessible and interoperable.

The approach taken by QA Focus was to develop a lightweight QA framework, with projects carried out self-assessment to ensure that the project's deliverables were compliant with technical policies which had been developed.

This approach has been adopted by JISC. New development programmes are now requiring projects to take a QA approach to their work, along the lines advocated by QA Focus. This provides a good example of how the project was successful in having a positive impact in its intended area.

Impact On JISC: Standards Framework

The QA Focus work included a methodology for the selection of standards. This approach was evaluated by Jon Duke and Andy Jordan in a JISC-funded study on standards. Their final report included favourable comments on the QA Focus approach (we will try to include the comments in this document at a later date).

The approach developed by QA Focus is currently (May 2005) being incorporated in a updated approach to standards for JISC-funded activities.

Impact On JISC Advisory Services

The QA Focus work developed a matrix for the selection of standards. This work was extended to address Web accessibility issues. A joint paper on "Developing A Holistic Approach For E-Learning Accessibility" was written with Lawrie Phipps, TechDis (and Elaine Swift, an e-learning developer at the University of Bath). This work led to the development of TechDis's accessibility framework for use by JISC development programmes.

This is a good example of how the project successfully worked with a fellow JISC advisory service in developing a sophisticated policy for JISC which is appropriate to the needs of the HE/FE community.

Scholarly Impact

Use of Google Scholar reveals the following reference to QA Focus work:

A Review Of The Technologies Application Programme-Perspectives On Teaching And Learning
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Library Trends

A QA Focus case study on Approaches To 'Spring Cleaning' at SOSIG was discovered by a guest editor of the Library Trends journal. The editor felt that the quality of the case study meant it would be valuable to use the case study as the basis of a commissioned article for a special issue of Library Trends on "The Commercialized Web: Challenges for Libraries and Democracy". The article on A Quality Assurance Framework For Metadata was published in Library Trends.

This provides a good example of how the quality of a QA Focus deliverable helped to ensure a wider exposure of the work covered in the case study.