Each course and undergraduate subject strand is assigned to a revalidation unit or sub-unit following its initial approval. These are normally groupings of cognate programmes agreed by the Faculty for the purposes of the efficient organisation of the re-approval process, taking account of commonality in modules and resources and to allow a subject overview to be presented. Sub-units reflect discipline and/or campus provision and/or distinguish between undergraduate and postgraduate level. In some cases, courses may be revalidated on an individual basis. Revalidations may be organised in conjunction with relevant professional, statutory and regulatory bodies.
Revalidations follow a regular five year cycle. Each unit or sub-unit is allocated to a particular revalidation year within a quinquennial cycle. The full five year schedule is given here.
The monthly schedule for subject units undergoing revalidation in the 2020/21 academic year is here and the schedule by Faculty is available here. New courses are assigned to a particular unit or sub-unit as part of the initial approval process. This determines their period of approval.
Form CA6a) is completed by the Faculty to confirm the provision to be included.
The list of courses and subject strands within units/sub-units may be found here.
At the end of the period of approval, in the final year, the courses and subject strands within the unit are presented afresh for revalidation by a University panel which includes external subject experts. The revalidation exercise is not a periodic review and there is no requirement for a detailed critical self-appraisal of the operation of the provision during the preceding period nor is viability considered in detail. No detailed statistical profiles are provided. Such matters are addressed through the annual monitoring processes. The panel meets with students to obtain their views directly. The primary purpose of revalidation is the re-affirmation of the standards set for the awards and the courses within the unit and their continuing currency and relevance to the University's mission. It aims to ensure that for each award-bearing course and undergraduate subject strand:
- it accords with the University's purpose and core strategic aims;
- the academic structure and content are appropriate;
- the award is in accordance with the University's scheme of qualifications; conforms to the modular and credit framework of the University, and the University's general regulations for the award in question;
- the standard and student workload are comparable to those of other programmes leading to the same award nationally;
- the available resources are sufficient to enable the stated aims and objectives to be met;
- there is evidence of reasonable employment and progression prospects.
Full details of the revalidation process and University expectations may be found in the Programme Approval Management and Review Handbook (Section H) or the Partnership Handbook (Part III, Section J or Part IV, Section Q). The Academic Office manages the activity through:
- establishing and servicing revalidation panels;
- scrutiny of documentation;
- provision of reports;
- monitoring the implementation of conditions of approval.
The Faculty appoints a Revalidation Unit Co-ordinator to oversee arrangements within the Faculty.
The Centre for Higher Education Research and Practice offers support in preparation for revalidation.
The resources of the Viewpoints project offers user-friendly reflective tools promoting and enhancing good curriculum design
An aide memoire for revalidation teams and panels is available here.