4.2 Approval processes

  • 4.2.1 Type A Changes

    As noted in 4.1.1 above, Type A changes must have the consent of the relevant Programme Lead (PL) or Subject Coordinator (SC) and be approved by the Faculty Head of Quality Assurance & Validations or Associate Dean Student Experience (ADSE); and should be logged by the Quality sub-group. In the case of module level changes, the Module Leader must provide the PL or SC and Faculty Quality Officer with an updated module descriptor (and, if necessary, programme specification). Once the update has been agreed, the Faculty Quality Officer should submit the change request to Student Records and Curriculum Management (SRCM) using the SRCM Curriculum Change Request form; and the updated module descriptor/s should be submitted to SRCM at the same time. Updated programme specifications (if applicable) should be lodged with the APQO and SRCM, via the link Quality Assurance Officer.

    4.2.2 Type B Changes

    1. Proposals for changes should be presented by the Module Leader, Subject Coordinator or Programme Lead (as appropriate) on the Request for Changes template (T2.13). If necessary – on the advice of the Faculty link QAO - student/external examiner/other stakeholder consultation report/s should be provided (using template T2.14). If a consultation report is not required, Module Leaders, Subject Coordinator or Programme Lead (as appropriate) should provide a summary of any feedback from students on the changes. This may take the form of a short account of the discussion at the Subject Committee or - where the change has come about as a result of student feedback - a statement to this effect.
    2. Once the change has been agreed by the programme team at a Subject Committee, the Request for Changes form, together with the updated module description and (if necessary, programme specification), should be forwarded to the Faculty Quality Officer, who will arrange for the proposal to be considered by the Faculty QLIC/AESC (or authorised sub-group). Once Faculty approval has been granted, the form should be submitted to the APQO and SRCM.
    3. The FQLIC/AESC (or authorised sub-group) must consider whether the documentation provides evidence that an appropriate consultation process has been undertaken, and that the rationale for the change is robust. Where new compulsory modules are being introduced, the panel must check that the modules contribute to the achievement of the programme learning outcomes and that the proposed curriculum change does not substantially alter the nature of the award. A short report will be added to the Request for Changes form, by the Faculty Quality Officer, to summarise the key points raised by panel members and to indicate their decision. The form will then be submitted to the FQLIC/AESC for endorsement. Updated programme specifications should be lodged with the APQO and SRCM, via the link Quality Assurance Officer; module descriptors should be submitted to SRCM.
    4. Students must be notified by the Subject Coordinator/Programme Lead when changes affecting their programmes of study have been approved; and the relevant external examiner/s must be notified of any changes to module assessment strategies prior to the next assessment period for the amended module/s.
    5. NOTE: the process for obtaining approval for variations from the regulations is set out in section 3.2 of this chapter.
  • 4.2.3 Deadlines for approval

    1. Changes for implementation in the next academic year should have completed the approval process above by 28th February (in order to meet the March deadline for systems amendments and to ensure that the April module registration window can open on time). This deadline also applies to changes to modules delivered by partner organisations. It may be possible to make in-year changes to sections 1,3,4,5,7,8 and 9 of a module descriptor, provided that the proposed changes are unlikely to impact on student choices and will not affect any statutory returns. Permission to make in-year changes is at the discretion of the ADSE or Faculty Head of Quality Assurance & Validations, in line with the Type A approval process described in 4.2.1 above.
    2. Except in the case of collaborative provision (for which periodic review incorporates re-approval), programme teams going through periodic review should avoid presenting changes for approval by the review panel. These amendments should, wherever possible, be considered and approved by Faculty QLIC/AESC prior to the panel event, so as to allow the panel to focus on the provision as a whole rather than on detailed changes to individual modules. Where the need to revalidate a particular programme is identified during the preparation for the periodic review of a Subject area, this should also be undertaken as a separate exercise. If amendments to existing provision are to be submitted during the periodic review exercise, particularly where they will require processing beyond the deadline set out in 4.2.3 above, advice should be sought from the link QAO and the link Curriculum & Student Information Manager on whether it will be possible to carry out the systems update in time for the start of the next academic year.