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International Partnerships for Academic Cooperation

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Section 1 - Purpose and Context

(1) To provide a framework that guides and governs the development, implementation, monitoring and review of international partnerships consistent with Western Sydney University international objectives and strategic directions. The policy applies to all University campuses and controlled entities in regard to international partnerships.

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Section 2 - Definitions

(2) For the purpose of this policy:

  1. International Partnerships - refer to partnerships between the University and overseas universities, colleges and other educational institutions and government agencies such as education ministries and scholarship funding bodies. In particular, this policy is confined to formal Memoranda of Academic Co-operation, and Supplemental Letters of Agreement, such as Student Exchange agreements. It does not include commercial contracts and commercial offshore programs. However, this does not preclude commercial contracts being developed later with institutions that are defined as International Partners within this policy.
  2. Memorandum of Academic Co-operation - refers to a written document which formalises the intention of the University to liaise with an international higher education institution for the general purpose of academic co-operation in such areas as research collaboration, joint academic and scientific activity, staff and student exchange, and the exchange of publications and materials of common interest.
  3. Supplemental Agreement - refers to a written agreement which is supplemental to the Memorandum of Academic Co-operation with an international higher education partner institution, and which details the various aspects of a particular form of academic co-operation.
    1. Examples:
      1. Supplemental Letter of Agreement (Exchange) - a Supplemental Letter of Agreement (Exchange), for the purpose of student and staff exchanges, would itemise all the details of the exchange including the obligations and responsibilities of Home and Host institutions.
      2. Supplemental Letter of Agreement (Articulation) - a Supplemental Letter of Agreement (Articulation) would itemise all the details for an articulation from an award of an international education institution (e.g. Advanced Diploma would be given academic credit towards a University Degree).
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Section 3 - Policy Statement

(3) International Partnerships must be developed in accordance with the University's Mission and strategic goals.

(4) The number of International Partnerships will be linked to strategic objectives and priority will be given to partnerships that promote and enhance the University's presence in selected countries, grow the University's reputation worldwide and foster long-term and deep relationships.

(5) The nature of International Partnerships will vary in response to the University's objectives and those of particular partner institutions.

(6) A diversity of International Partnerships will be encouraged with quantifiable aims determined.

(7) International Partnerships will be pursued for the purposes of the:

  1. development of collaborative research projects;
  2. organisation of joint academic and scientific activities, such as courses, conferences, seminars, symposia or lectures;
  3. exchange of research, teaching and other employed personnel;
  4. student mobility, including student exchange and or study abroad;
  5. exchange of publications and other materials of common interest;
  6. development of other joint projects of collaboration to mutual benefit, to be defined;
  7. development of twinning programs, articulation arrangements and short study tour programs;
  8. co-supervision of HDR students.

Types of Agreements

(8) Each International Partnership as defined by this policy will be formalised initially by a Memorandum of Academic Co-operation.

(9) A separate student exchange agreement (Supplemental Letter of Agreement, Exchange) will be supplemental to the Memorandum of Academic Co-operation, where student exchange activity emerges as a consequence of that Agreement.

(10) Other specific collaborative projects will also be detailed in separate Supplemental Letter of Agreements to the Memorandum of Academic Co-operation, as projects arise.

Formal Requirements

(11) All agreements are subject to a strategic assessment to determine partner suitability and strategic fit and will not be signed by the University until all resource implications are identified, and appropriate resource allocation agreed.

(12) The Memorandum of Academic Co-operation and/or Supplemental Letter of Agreement pro-formas adopted for the purpose of formalising the partnership can be supplied by either partner, but must be acceptable to both partners.

(13) It is preferred that all agreements will be institution-to-institution and that any collaborative/ cooperative agreement between sub-academic units within either or both institutions (eg. School-to-School), will be supplemental to the general Memorandum of Academic Co-operation.

(14) Western Sydney International will coordinate the establishment of all International Partnerships for Academic Co-operation Memoranda and Supplemental Agreements.

(15) The Vice-Chancellor and President (or nominee) of the University will be the official signatory to all Memoranda of Academic Co-operation and Supplemental Agreements.

Contents of Agreements

(16) All Memoranda and Agreements should have a review/revision clause, and procedures for termination.

(17) All Memoranda and Agreements must be signed in hard copy. The original will be filed in the official Records and Archives Management Services Unit and an electronic copy stored by Western Sydney International in the University CRM System.

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Section 4 - Procedures

(18) Determine whether the proposal is specifically for non-commercial or commercial outcomes (you may wish to refer to the terminology/definitions listed in Section 2).

(19) Some proposals may have the potential to develop commercial outcomes, but this may not be the initial objective.

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Section 5 - Guidelines

(20) Nil.