Once they have obtained Development Consent new programme proposals undergo an Institutional two-stage validation process that gives detailed academic scrutiny to their curriculum, awards, learning outcomes, and teaching and assessment strategies (Stage One); and arrangements for student support, staffing and resources, course organisation and management, and quality assurance and enhancement (Stage Two). Programmes are considered in relation to the Expectations of the UK Quality Code for Higher Education (QAA), including the national Framework for Higher Education Qualifications and Subject Benchmark Statements, as well as any relevant professional standards. Validation panels also include academic input from external subject experts.

For staff involved in preparing for programme approval the AQDU has produced the guidance document ‘Preparing for Validation‘ [PDF].  Additional information is included in the Quality Management Handbook, especially Chapter 4 [PDF] and guidance on the ‘mapping’ of programme learning outcomes to QAA Subject Benchmark Statements is provided HERE.

The University provides the following staff development for programme design and approval:

Once validated, programmes will normally remain in approval until their next scheduled Periodic Review.  Information on the modification of validated programmes can be found on the Programme Modifications  page of this site. Information on the standalone validation and modification of modules can be found on the Module Approval page.

Parts A (Programme Specification) and C (Module specifications) of validation documents are generated electronically using the University’s E-VAL system. The following template forms (in Word) are also used within the validation process: