Boxology® Academy Malpractice and Maladministration Policy
MALPRACTICE AND MALADMINISTRATION INTRODUCTION
This policy is aimed at our customers and staff, who are studying or teaching Boxology® approved qualifications, courses or workshops within or outside the UK and who are involved in suspected or actual malpractice/maladministration.
Definition of Malpractice
Malpractice is essentially any activity or practice which deliberately contravenes regulations and compromises the integrity of the internal or external assessment process and/or the validity of certificates. It covers any deliberate actions, neglect, default or other practice that compromises, or could compromise:
∙ the assessment process
∙ the integrity of a regulated qualification
∙ the validity of a result or certificate
∙ the reputation and credibility of Boxology® qualification
Malpractice may include a range of issues from the failure to maintain appropriate records or systems, to the deliberate falsification of records in order to claim certificates. For the purpose of this policy this term also covers misconduct and forms of unnecessary discrimination or bias towards certain or groups of learners.
Examples of malpractice
The categories listed below are examples of Boxology® and learner malpractice. Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are only intended as guidance on our definition of malpractice:
∙ denial of access to premises, records, information, learners and staff to any authorised Boxology® representative and/or the regulatory authorities
∙ failure to carry out internal assessment, internal moderation or internal verification in accordance with our requirements
∙ deliberate failure to adhere to our learner registration and certification procedures
∙ deliberate failure to continually adhere to our recognising centre (Active IQ/CIMSPA) recognition and/or qualification approval requirements or actions assigned to Boxology®
∙ fraudulent claim(s) for certificates
∙ the unauthorised use of inappropriate materials / equipment in assessment settings (e.g. mobile phones)
∙ intentional withholding of information from us which is critical to maintaining the rigour of quality assurance and standards of qualifications
∙ conspiracy or permitting conspiracy in exams/assessments
∙ learners still working towards qualification after certification claims have been made ∙ persistent instances of maladministration within the Boxology®
∙ a loss, theft of, or a breach of confidentiality in, any assessment materials
∙ plagiarism by learners/staff
∙ copying from another learner
∙ personation - assuming the identity of another learner or having someone assume your identity during an assessment
∙ unauthorised amendment, copying or distributing of exam/assessment papers/materials
∙ inappropriate assistance to learners by Boxology® staff (e.g. unfairly helping them to pass a unit or qualification)
∙ deliberate submission of false information to gain a qualification or unit
∙ deliberate failure to adhere to, or to circumnavigate, the requirements of our Reasonable Adjustments Policy
Definition of Maladministration
Maladministration is essentially any activity or practice which results in non-compliance with administrative regulations and requirements and includes the application of persistent mistakes or poor administration within Boxology® (e.g. inappropriate learner records).
Examples of Maladministration
The categories listed below are examples of Boxology® and learner maladministration. Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are only intended as guidance on our definition of malpractice:
∙ persistent failure to adhere to our learner registration and certification procedures
∙ persistent failure to adhere to our recognising centre (Active IQ/CIMSPA) recognition and/or qualification requirements and/or associated actions assigned to Boxology®
∙ late learner registrations (both infrequent and persistent)
∙ unreasonable delays in responding to requests and/or communications from Boxology® ∙ inaccurate claim for certificates
∙ failure to maintain appropriate auditable records, e.g. certification claims and/or forgery of evidence
∙ withholding of information, by deliberate act or omission, from Boxology® which is required to assure Active IQ/CIMSPA of the centre’s ability to deliver qualifications appropriately
∙ failure to adhere to, or to circumnavigate, the requirements of our Reasonable Adjustments Policy
Process for making an allegation of malpractice or maladministration
Anybody who identifies or is made aware of suspected or actual cases of malpractice or maladministration at any time must immediately notify Active IQ/CIMSPA. In doing so they should put them in writing/email and enclose appropriate supporting evidence.
All allegations must include (where possible):
∙ centre’s name, address and number
∙ learner’s name and Boxology® registration number
∙ centre personnel’s details if they are involved in the case
∙ details of the Boxology® course/qualification affected or nature of the service affected ∙ nature of the suspected or actual malpractice and associated dates
∙ details and outcome of any initial investigation carried out by Boxology® or anybody else involved in the case, including any mitigating circumstances
If Boloxogy® has conducted an initial investigation prior to formally notifying us, the Boxology® should ensure that staff involved in the initial investigation are competent and have no personal interest in the outcome of the investigation. However, it is important to note that in all instances the Boxology® must immediately notify us if they suspect malpractice or maladministration has occurred as we have a responsibility to the regulatory authorities to ensure that all investigations are carried out rigorously and effectively.
In all cases of suspected malpractice and maladministration reported to us we will protect the identity of the ‘informant’ in accordance with our duty of confidentiality and/or any other legal duty.
Confidentiality and whistleblowing
Sometimes a person making an allegation of malpractice or maladministration may wish to remain anonymous. Although it is always preferable to reveal your identity and contact details to us; however, if you are concerned about possible adverse consequences you may request us not to divulge your identity. If it helps to reassure you on this point, we can confirm that we are not obliged to disclose information if to do so would be a breach of confidentiality and/or any other legal duty, however to progress an investigation it may sometimes not be possible to conceal identities. However, this would always be discussed in advance with the whistleblower. While we are prepared to investigate issues which are reported to us anonymously we shall always try to confirm an allegation by means of a separate investigation before taking up the matter with those the allegation relates.
Responsibility for the investigation
In accordance with regulatory requirements all suspected cases of maladministration and malpractice will be examined promptly by Boxology® and passed onto our regulating centres: ActiveIQ and CIMSPA.
Investigation summary process
The fundamental principle of all investigations is to conduct them in a fair, reasonable and legal manner, ensuring that all relevant evidence is considered without bias. In doing so investigations will be based around the following broad objectives:
∙ to establish the facts relating to allegations/complaints in order to determine whether any irregularities have occurred
∙ to identify the cause of the irregularities and those involved
∙ to establish the scale of the irregularities
∙ to evaluate any action already taken by Boxology®
∙ to determine whether remedial action is required to reduce the risk to current registered learners and to preserve the integrity of the qualification
∙ to ascertain whether any action is required in respect of certificates already issued
∙ to obtain clear evidence to support any sanctions to be applied to Boxology®
∙ to identify any adverse patterns or trends
We also reserve the right to withhold a learner’s, results for all the Boxology® course/qualifications and/or workshops they are studying at the time of the notification or investigation of suspected or actual malpractice/maladministration. If appropriate, we may find that the complexity of a case means that we are unable to complete an investigation. In such circumstances we will consult the relevant regulatory authority in order to determine how best to progress the matter.
After an investigation, we will produce a draft report for the parties concerned to check the factual accuracy. Any subsequent amendments will be agreed between the parties concerned and ourselves. The report will:
∙ identify where the breach, if any, occurred
∙ confirm the facts of the case
∙ identify who is responsible for the breach (if any)
∙ confirm an appropriate level of remedial action to be applied
We will make the final report available to the parties concerned and to the regulatory authorities and other external agencies as required.
If the investigation confirms that malpractice or maladministration has taken place we will consider what action to take in order to:
∙ minimise the risk to the integrity of certification now and in the future
∙ maintain public confidence in the delivery and awarding of qualifications
∙ discourage others from carrying out similar instances of malpractice or maladministration ∙ ensure there has been no gain from compromising our standards
The action we take may include:
∙ in cases where certificates are deemed to be invalid, inform the regulatory bodies why they are invalid and any action to be taken for reassessment and/or for the withdrawal of the certificates. We will also let the affected learners know the action we are taking, and that their original certificates are invalid and ask the learner (where possible) to return the invalid certificates to Boxology®. We will also amend our database so that duplicates of the invalid certificates cannot be issued
∙ amending aspects of our qualification assessment and/or monitoring arrangements and associated guidance to prevent the issue from reoccurring
In proven cases of malpractice and/or maladministration by a centre, Boxology® reserves the right to charge the learner for any re-sits and reissuing of certificates.