Policy Title – Policy on Programme/Curricular Approval, Implementation, Monitoring, Review and Discontinuation

Policy Number – 14

Functional Area – Academic Staff Members

Effective and Revised Dates – 08.11.2018

Approving Authority – The Council, University of Sri Jayewardenepura

Administrative Responsibility – Faculty Boards, Curriculum Development Committee, Internal Quality Assurance Unit, Senate and Council


Rationale & Purpose

Curriculum development involves the effort of University academic members to create, sustain and change modules, programmes of study and other activities encompassing knowledge, skills and attitude development. This policy provides guidance on the process for implementation, monitoring, changes, and discontinuation of credit bearing courses or academic programs and outlines the roles of administrators and committees at the university level within this process.

Scope

Academic staff members, students of all courses and programmes

Policy Statement

  • University programmes of studies and modules should:
  • Correspond with the University vision and mission plans
  • Comply with Sri Lanka Quality Assurance framework criteria
  • Outline course and programme specifications and learning outcomes clearly
  • Provide equal opportunity for students to select and follow appropriately
  • Provide different entry levels and facilitate progression through levels of achievement leading to different exit points.
  • Encompass a broad range of subjects, with a mix of appropriate core, optional and elective modules
  • Offer an appropriate range of methods of teaching and learning related to the objectives of each module.
  • Promote the development of knowledge with critical judgement, understanding and ability.
  • Promote life-long learning
  • Be informed by good practice elsewhere in the University and higher education system, and by the needs of the community and the country.
  • Lead to qualifications at appropriate levels of competence and achievement, including appropriate high level core and transferable skills.
  • Be relevant to external opportunities for graduates, including employment, appropriate professional accreditation and further study.

New programmes and courses :

  • New Curriculum or a new programme should be approved by the boards of respective curriculum development committees of the faculties, faculty boards, the Senate appointed curriculum development committee, Senate and the University Council.
  • Once a course is approved by the Senate and the Council, it should be included in the student handbook and respective faculty prospectus. A new programme should obtain the approval of the Internal Quality Assurance Unit, Quality Assurance Council and the UGC and should be listed in the UGC handbook.
  • Modules and programmes need to be monitored regularly. Each department and faculty should consider student feedback for monitoring and improvement of a module or a study programme.
  • In curriculums or programme revisions the key stake holder should be considered. Given the rapid pace of change, it is essential that curricula and programmes should be reviewed appropriately.
  • If proposed changes to an existing programme or course are more than 50%, it should be tabled at respective faculty boards and the curriculum development committee. Final approval should be obtained by the Senate.
  • Any programme of study or module that does not register any students for three/four or 5 consecutive academic years (general/special degrees or medical degrees) will be considered for withdrawal by the Faculty or relevant department. To facilitate this process, the relevant faculty or department will present with a list of programmes of study that have not recorded any student registrations over a three-years and the faculty will make decisions about the retention and withdrawal of those programmes or module. Final approval should be obtained by the Senate.
  • Termination of a curriculum or programme should be notified after obtaining the approval from the respective faculty board and the Senate. Final withdrawal can be completed either after 6, 7 or 8 years depending on their duration.

 

Definitions

Senate: Supreme body in the university that is the final authority in any academic and administrative matter

Course/module review – Refers to the internal self-evaluation procedure that a Higher Education Institution undertakes to monitor and reflect on the outcomes of the education it provides through its courses/modules.  The findings of course reviews should be included in the reviews of the programmes of which they form a part.

Curriculum alignment – The principle of ensuring that the purpose of a programme (or module) is supported by the content selection, learning outcomes, teaching-learning methods and assessment practices used to deliver it.

Learning outcomes – Statements that describe the knowledge or skills students should acquire by the end of a particular assignment, class, course, or program, and help students understand why that knowledge and those skills will be useful to them

Minimum standards – The requirements for a specific level of provision that a programme has to meet in order to be accredited by the HEQC.

New Programme – a programme which has not been offered before, or a programme whose purpose, outcomes and field of study, mode or site of delivery has been considerably changed.

Outcomes-based education – A learner-centered, results oriented approach to education that requires students to demonstrate evidence that they are able to achieve stated learning outcomes.

Programme– A purposeful and structured set of learning experiences that leads to a qualification.  Programmes may be disciplined-based, professional, career-focused, or trans, inter-or multi-disciplinary in nature. A programme has recognized entry and exit points.  All taught higher education programmes should have core and elective elements.

Programme evaluation – the external QA procedures undertaken by an external agency (expert peers, the SLQF, to make an independent assessment of a programme’s outcomes and impact and/or to validate the findings of an internal programme review.

Programme Review – the internal self-evaluation procedures that an HEI undertakes to monitor and reflect on the outcomes and impact of its academic programmes. The findings of programme reviews should feed into the instructional quality management system, where decisions are taken and action for improvement planned and resourced.

Peer Assessment – a form of assessment in which students in the same programme, with the same or similar competencies, are responsible for evaluation of the performance of one another in order to help each other improve that learning/performance.

Titles of related Policies, Procedures, Forms, Guidelines

Assessment and moderation of student learning policy, plagiarism policy, evaluation of teaching policy, teaching and learning policy.

 Download the Policy