Watson University’s Registration as Australian University
WU should appeal the ruling by the TEQSA since in accordance with the act in the summary chapter, which states “That quality framework is a series of standards made by the Minister on the advice of the Higher Education Standards Panel.” The minister, having supported the bid for the tertiary institution to be elevated to the status of Australian University, gives them bargaining power. The act in this section provides for a reviewing process for the decisions reached by TEQSA. In the first Division, section 183 of the act provides for decisions by the body that can be reviewed and the due process to be followed when the reviewing is being done. The section states that the application for the review should be made as to:
- Be in the approved form;
- Set out the reasons for the application;
- Be accompanied by the fee (if any) determined under section 158 for a review under section 185.
The application must be made within:
- 30 days after the applicant is informed of the decision;
- Such a long period as TEQSA allows.
Taking this into account, it shows that decisions reached by TEQSA are reviewable and therefore, since the institution declared that WU is not in a position to be turned into an Australian University, we could appeal the decision. In the reason section, we will indicate that viewing WU as a non-profit organization and using this as a basis to deny us the right to be an Australian University is in contradiction of the act in section 60, which states in part “TEQSA may review or examine any aspect of an entity’s operations to:
- Assess the level of quality of higher education provided by one or more registered higher education providers;
- Assess whether there are any systemic issues relating to a particular course of study leading to a particular regulated higher education award;
- Assess the level of quality of, or whether there are any systemic issues relating to, the courses of study that lead to one or more kinds of regulated higher education awards.”
It doesn’t state that one being a non-profit organization disqualifies them from being an Australian university. This will give WU the argument edge on the matter. The fact that the minister supports the calls for the university to be named as an Australian University provides the university with a good opportunity to make an administrative appeal to the decision reached by TEQSA as per section 187 of the act, which allows for a review of the decision reached by TEQSA to the administrative tribunal. The administrative tribunal may then revoke the decision reached by TEQSA and site reasons for doing that.
The basis upon which TEQSA anchors its decision when revoking WU’s application of being an Australian University is inappropriate. WU is financed by a Consolidated Revenue Fund, and the basis of cancelling this was the fact that it was non-profit. The reason why it is non-profit is that it receives its funding from the revenue, and like other Australian Universities which receive funding from the commonwealth to fund most of their activities, it is baseless and unfounded to deny WU the chance to become an Australian University for doing something that existing Australian University do.