• 5. Programme closure

    Reason for closure may vary and it is important that the appropriate closure process is followed.

    The authority to initiate the programme closure process lies Faculty Executive groups, Senior Management Team or LPAG. However, Academic Board has the ultimate authority for making academic decisions about the University’s portfolio.

    This section covers:

  • Reasons for closure and authority

    • Reasons for closure
      Reason for closure may vary and it is important that the appropriate closure process is followed. 
    • Authority to make closure decisions
      The authority to initiate the programme closure process lies Faculty Executive groups, Senior Management Team or LPAG. However, Academic Board has the ultimate authority for making academic decisions about the University’s portfolio. 

    Closure processes

    The appropriate closure form should be completed via route A or B:

    • Route A 
      Administrative closure - Programmes that have never recruited or have no remaining students, or programmes being replaced through re-validation process.
    • Route B 
      Closure of programmes with remaining students and/or current applicants.

    All proposals for closure must, in due course, include the following information:

    • Clear rationale for closure
    • Arrangements for phasing out the provision, or the identification of alternative provision, bearing in mind the University’s contractual obligations to existing students and applicants holding offers

    Suspension of recruitment

    Suspension of recruitment may be the preferred option where there is reason to believe that the issues underlying the decision to suspend are temporary. However, suspension of a programme is often a first step towards closure, which may be taken to allow Schools/Departments to undertake the revalidation of the current provision or the development of new, replacement provision. 

    It is recommended that a programme should not remain in suspension for longer than two years - during which time it is subject to the normal QA processes - without a decision to re-open, replace, or close being made. 

    Please note that recruitment to ACP provision is reviewed annually.

    It should be noted that the option to suspend programmes primarily relates to Admissions, who may suspend a UCAS code to prevent recruitment; but eCSIS is now able to record ‘suspended’ status.

    It is vital that an appropriate process is followed - including a risk assessment of proposed actions - in order to ensure that the University is compliant with consumer legislation in respect of providing early communication about any programme changes to applicants and students. 

    When a proposal to suspend is made, a similar group to the minimum exit group (see section 5.3 and template T2.18 Programme Closure Risk Assessment Tool) should be convened in order to determine whether suspension, rather than closure, is the appropriate course of action. The group should also ensure that the T2.19 Suspension of Recruitment Form is completed.