Existing Course and Programme Updates Guidelines
Procedures, deadlines, and considerations for updating an existing course or degree programme table (DPT).
Degree programme updates
Changes to the DPT structure or compulsory courses
Require BoS approval, and must be approved by March to allow time for the updates to be made prior to the DRPS rollover. Before proposing any such changes, you must confirm that they are consistent with any marketing materials (degree finder, prospectus, etc) that incoming students will have seen. Major changes (to a high proportion of courses or assessment methods) require College approval.
Smaller changes (such as adding or removing an optional course)
May sometimes be approved by convenor action, especially if the degree is relatively self-contained (e.g., CDT degrees). After consulting with the course organiser(s) of the relevant course(s) and the relevant Programme Director (if any), please contact the DDoLT (curriculum) with your proposed change, which will either be approved or referred to BoS for approval. Changes should be approved by March to allow time for the updates to be made prior to the DRPS rollover.
Out-of-cycle DPT updates (typically, to fix errors or oversights)
Can be approved by convenor action. Please contact the DDoLT (curriculum) if you believe there is an error or oversight in a DPT that needs to be corrected.
The procedures, deadlines, and considerations vary depending on the type of update, as described below.
Changes to the number of credit points
This change has implications for the allocation of teaching duties and other resourcing, and also requires the creation of a new course in DRPS. You will need to follow the procedures and deadlines for proposing a new course.
Changes to the course title, level, and/or normal year taken
These changes require the creation of a new course in DRPS and consequent updates to DPTs, but do not affect allocation of teaching duties. Therefore, they can be done up until the rollover of the DRPS in April (but will normally need to be approved no later than March to allow time to make the updates).
If you are considering these changes, please get in touch with the DDoLT (Curriculum) in the first instance with a brief statement and justification of the proposed change(s). Please mention whether any other changes are needed (which will often be the case for changes of level and/or normal year). You will then be advised what type of proposal to submit to Board of Studies for approval:
- If the changes (other than those listed above) are fairly minor, you won’t need to fill in a New Course Proposal Form, and can instead describe the changes relative to the existing course. ISS will create the new course by copying the remainder of the information from the existing one.
- However, depending on the nature and extent of your changes, you may be asked to fill in the form for New Course Proposals.
The change must be approved by BoS no later than March to allow time to make the updates prior to DRPS rollover.
Changes to assessment balance or learning outcomes
According to University policy, these are considered “major changes” to a course and normally require approval by the Board of Studies. Since there is no guarantee of a BoS meeting after March of each academic year, it is strongly recommended to submit any such proposals before then.
Since changes to assessment balance may require other changes to course design and/or resourcing, please contact the DDoLT (Curriculum) in the first instance with a brief description of your proposed change and its ramifications to the design and resourcing of the course. If the change looks reasonable, you will be invited to submit a BoS proposal.
If your change is very minor (e.g., correcting a typo or making a small change to a Learning Outcome), it may be approved by convenor action.
All other changes
For changes to the course summary, description, delivery details, prerequisites, or other aspects not mentioned above, please contact the DDoLT (Curriculum) in the first instance with a brief description and justification of your proposed change, and whether it has any resourcing implications. The DDoLT (Curriculum) will decide whether your changes can be approved by convenor action or need to be submitted to the Board.
- Typically, changes to the summary and description can be approved by convenor action unless your course is an important prerequisite for others.
- Changes to pre- and co-requisites, “prohibited combinations” and “other requirements” can also typically be approved by convenor action, but you may be asked to check with relevant colleagues first (e.g. Programme Directors).
- Proposed changes to aspects of delivery (such as the number or type of contact hours) often have implications for resourcing and/or the time required from students, so you should address these in your initial request (and your BoS proposal, if you are asked to submit to the Board).