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Section 1 - Overview
(1) This Rule provides the framework for the Recognition of Prior Learning and the granting of Advanced Standing while maintaining the academic standards of the University of New England (UNE) courses and sets clear responsibilities and accountabilities for decisions; ensures that processes are transparent and decisions are consistent and fair; and facilitates the movement of Students between institutions and courses.
(2) A grant of Advanced Standing for prior learning is an acknowledgement by the University that the applicant has the knowledge, understanding and skills equivalent to the Learning Outcomes of courses and units of study offered by the University.
Section 2 - Scope
(3) This Rule applies to:
- all applicants for Advanced Standing in undergraduate and postgraduate (coursework) courses;
- Students applying for Permission to Enrol Elsewhere; and
- University Representatives involved in the administration, assessment and granting of Advanced Standing for prior learning.
(4) The Rule does not apply to the Joint Medical Program and higher degree by research courses.
Section 3 - Rules
(5) The University recognises that Students commence courses with different levels, areas and forms of prior learning.
(6) Recognition of Prior Learning:
- provides opportunities for Students to proceed from one level of education/training to another or across qualifications at the same level;
- facilitates Student progress, completion and mobility; and
- aims to optimise Student progression through courses by recognising prior learning as the basis for satisfying partial course requirements.
(7) Granting of Advanced Standing for prior learning is conducted in accordance with University assessment and quality related rules and procedures and Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) standards to maintain academic integrity of the University's courses
(8) Decisions regarding the granting of Advanced Standing for prior learning will:
- be evidence based, applied consistently and fairly in a timely manner, equitable and transparent; and
- preserve the integrity of the UNE qualification and disciplinary requirements, ensuring that recipients have demonstrated adequate conceptual or theoretical bases for skills and knowledge successfully applied.
(9) The University will provide current, accurate and accessible information to prospective and enrolled students on Advanced Standing arrangements for prior Formal, Informal and Non-Formal learning.
Recognition of Prior Learning
(10) The University may recognise prior learning by granting:
- Advanced Standing, which may be:
- Specified Advanced Standing granted where prior learning is regarded as having met the Learning Outcomes of a specific UNE unit in the applicant's UNE course. Specified Advanced Standing is granted using the UNE unit code and credit point value;
- Unspecified Advanced Standing granted where the prior learning is deemed broadly consistent with the Learning Outcomes of the course being undertaken without it being directly equivalent to the Learning Outcomes of specific UNE units. Unspecified Advanced Standing will be granted as a total number of credit points and may be designated as meeting part(s) of a course (typically elective requirements) according to the course rules;
- Block Advanced Standing granted for successful completion of an approved course that contained subject matter at a level deemed appropriate for the UNE course. Block Advanced Standing can be granted for whole stages or components of a program of study and may be Specified or Unspecified; and/or
- Exemption of a requirement to undertake a core, prescribed or pre-requisite unit of study.
Granting of Advanced Standing
(11) The amount of Advanced Standing granted will be determined with reference to the comparability and equivalence of the following:
- course requirements;
- Learning Outcomes;
- Volume of Learning;
- teaching and assessment methods; and
- any other standards specified by a School or discipline.
(12) A Course Coordinator may grant Advanced Standing on the basis of:
- prior studies undertaken as part of a complete or incomplete university-level award course;
- prior studies undertaken as part of an AQF accredited course offered by the Vocational Education and Training Sector;
- studies undertaken in some non-award programs at the University e.g. UNE Pathways Enabling Course;
- non-Formal and Informal Learning;
- approved Articulation Agreements; and
- a Mobility Program or Permission to Enrol Elsewhere.
(13) When granting Advanced Standing a Course Coordinator may impose requirements on an applicant with respect to:
- progression to more advanced units of study within a particular course;
- time limits for completion of the course; and
- Exemption of units and their replacement with alternative units.
(14) Eligibility for Advanced Standing does not guarantee an applicant a place in a course.
(15) The grades achieved in prior learning are not recorded in the grant of Advanced Standing nor is Advanced Standing counted towards a UNE Grade Point Average.
(16) Advanced Standing granted to Student visa holders will be managed in accordance with the National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007 Part D, Standard 12.
Limits on the Granting of Advanced Standing
(17) Advanced Standing will not be granted:
- for units/courses undertaken to meet admission requirements except for;
- approved articulations and Nested Awards as indicated in individual course rules; and
- some units completed as part of an approved admission pathway e.g. UNE Pathways Enabling Course.
- where the prior learning was undertaken later than the time limitations in clause 21, which also applies to Students resuming their studies in a course following a leave of absence or exclusion;
- for studies completed below AQF Level 5;
- on the basis of failed or incomplete units;
- where a conceded, compensatory or terminating (or equivalent) pass has been awarded;
- on the basis of studies undertaken at another institution without prior permission while a Student was enrolled at UNE or on leave of absence; or
- on the basis of studies completed at another institution while a Student is excluded or expelled;
- for research projects, reading and special option units and practical/professional experience (including clinical/professional placement requirements) except with the permission of the Course Coordinator and subject to individual course rules; and
- for professional or work experience directly related to a UNE course once the Student has been enrolled in that course, except in exceptional circumstances and with the permission of the Course Coordinator.
(18) Advanced Standing is granted for whole units only i.e. Advanced Standing will not be granted for part of a unit.
(19) Advanced Standing will be counted towards only one course at any one time unless a Student is permitted to enrol in two courses concurrently and is granted permission by both Course Coordinators to count the Advanced Standing twice.
(20) For courses that are accredited by external professional bodies the University may limit the amount of Advanced Standing granted according to the requirements of accreditation.
(21) To be eligible for Advanced Standing prior learning must be less than 10 calendar years old or a shorter period if the prior learning is no longer current to the relevant course and/or for courses that are accredited by external professional bodies. In exceptional circumstances and at their discretion, the relevant Course Coordinator may allow prior learning that occurred more than 10 calendar years to be recognised providing no currency of knowledge or competency issues apply.
Maximum Advanced Standing
(22) The maximum amount of Advanced Standing that may be granted towards:
- any 143 credit points or less undergraduate course is 50% of the credit points required;
- any 144 credit points or more undergraduate course is 67% of the credit points required;
- joint or combined courses is 67% of either of the two courses contributing to the joint or combined UNE course;
- a Bachelor Honours course is 50% of the total credit points required. Advanced Standing may not be granted for dissertation or thesis components; and
- a coursework postgraduate course is 50% of the credit points required. Individual postgraduate course rules may specify additional limits on the maximum of Advanced Standing that can be granted.
Exceptions to Advanced Standing Limits
(23) Subject to individual course rules, the amount of Advanced Standing may exceed the maximum amount limits if the unit/s on which the application is based have been completed at UNE:
- and those units have not been counted towards a completed UNE course; or
- as part of a lower level course which articulates with the course which is the subject of the application (i.e. Nested Award), irrespective of whether the Student has graduated with the lower level course or not; or
- a combination of a. and b. above.
(24) Exception to Advanced Standing for postgraduate courses:
- the applicant will be assessed for Block Advanced Standing at admission; and
- further Advanced Standing may be granted towards the remaining credit points required to complete the course up to the limits in clause 22e.
Period of Candidature
(25) The maximum period of candidature for the course is adjusted pro-rata according to the credit point value of the Advanced Standing granted.
Acceptance and Retention of Advanced Standing
(26) An applicant must accept the granting of Advanced Standing.
(27) Advanced Standing will lapse if the Student fails to complete a unit in the UNE course and does not remain enrolled in that course beyond one statutory census date.
Appeals Against an Advanced Standing Decision
(28) An applicant may appeal an Advanced Standing decision by the process set out in the Advanced Standing Procedures. The decision of the School Advanced Standing Appeals Panel is final.
Rescission of Advanced Standing
(29) A Student is not normally required to rescind a UNE award to be eligible to seek Advanced Standing towards another UNE course although the Advanced Standing limits under this Rule shall apply to the new UNE course.
(30) A Student who has been granted Advanced Standing may, at any time, prior to the commencement of their final trimester of study, request to have rescinded part or all of their Advanced Standing.
(31) The University reserves the right to withdraw or change grants of Advanced Standing where the documentation provided by the applicant proves to be incomplete, misleading, false or invalid or when an error has been made in assessing or processing the application.
Permission to Enrol Elsewhere
(32) Students must apply and receive written permission from the University prior to enrolling at another institution by the process set out in the Advanced Standing Procedures.
(33) Records of all actions and decisions relating to this Rule and associated Procedures must be kept in accordance with the University Records Management Rule.
(34) Applicants are responsible for:
- submitting an application in accordance with the Rule and associated Procedures and:
- presenting evidence according to the requirements specified in the associated Procedures.
(35) The relevant Course Coordinator is responsible for:
- exercising professional judgement in relation to decisions for granting of Advanced Standing on an individual basis, consistent with relevant rules, policies, AQF standards and reference points;
- determining the appropriate pedagogical approach to assess prior learning, evaluating the extent to which the evidence gathered demonstrates achievement of the unit/course Learning Outcomes;
- providing advice to applicants on the evidence required and the format for the submission of evidence;
- determining requests for Advanced Standing in consultation with the relevant Unit Coordinator;
- application of the time limitations for Advanced Standing; and
- if an application is rejected providing a response stating the grounds on which Advanced Standing for the particular course was not approved. Grounds for rejection may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- unit/course does not meet one or more of the criteria in clause 12; and/or
- the qualification was completed outside the timeframe in clause 21.
(36) The School Teaching and Learning Committee is responsible for approval of Advanced Standing Assessments.
(37) Schools are responsible for:
- demonstrating that UNE unit and/or course Learning Outcomes have been met when Advanced Standing has been awarded;
- establishing procedures to ensure timely consideration of applications in accordance with the associated Procedures;
- establishing procedures to quality assure the evidence-based assessment methods applied to determine the equivalence and comparability between the prior learning and the relevant UNE unit and/or course Learning Outcomes for Informal and Non-Formal applications for Advanced Standing; and
- maintaining the integrity of information on Advanced Standing Assessments made under an Articulation Agreement.
(38) The School Advanced Standing Appeals Panel is responsible for considering requests for review of decisions made under this Rule.
(39) Student Administration and Services is responsible for;
- administration and initial assessment of Advanced Standing applications;
- liaison with Schools on recommendations for granting of and precedents for Advanced Standing;
- advising domestic and international (not studying in Australia) applicants of the outcome of their Advanced Standing application; and
- updating the precedent database
(40) UNE International is responsible for:
- advising Student Visa Holders of the outcome of their Advanced Standing application; and
- adjusting a Student's offer of admission or eCOE in accordance with Standard 12 of the National Code.
Authority and Compliance
(41) The Vice-Chancellor, pursuant to Section 29 of the University of New England Act, makes this University Rule.
(42) University Representatives and Students must observe it in relation to University matters.
(43) The Rule Administrator is authorised to make procedures and guidelines for the operation of this University Rule. The procedures and guidelines must be compatible with the provisions of this Rule.
(44) This Rule operates as and from the Effective Date.
(45) Previous rules, policies, procedures and guidelines on Advanced Standing and related documents are replaced and have no further operation from the Effective Date of this new Rule.
(46) Notwithstanding the other provisions of this University Rule, the Vice-Chancellor may approve an exception to this Rule where the Vice-Chancellor determines the application of the Rule would otherwise lead to an unfair, unreasonable or absurd outcome. Approvals by the Vice-Chancellor under this clause must be documented in writing and must state the reason for the exception.
Section 4 - Definitions
(47) Advanced Standing means granting credit toward a UNE course in recognition of prior learning.
(48) Advanced Standing Assessment is an approved Advanced Standing decision, derived from an Articulation Agreement or stand-alone application for Advanced Standing that can be systematically recorded, published and applied to a Student program of study and can be reapplied in subsequent circumstances.
(49) Articulation means the design of courses in ways which facilitate and maximise opportunities for students to progress from one level of education/training to the next.
(50) Articulation Agreement means an agreement that outlines the broad principles and conditions where Students who complete study at a partner institution have a defined pathway to progress to a course of study at UNE with admission and/or Advanced Standing.
(51) Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) means the national guidelines that establishes standards for Australian qualifications. Qualifications are given a level based on the depth of learning.
(52) Block Advanced Standing is defined in clause 10aiii of the Rule.
(53) Exemption means when a Student has demonstrated competence in the Learning Outcomes of a unit such that they are not required to complete that unit but are required to complete another unit of the same credit point value.
(54) Formal Learning means the learning that takes place through a structured program of learning that leads to the full or partial achievement of an officially accredited qualification.
(55) Informal Learning means learning gained through work, social, family or leisure activities and experiences. Unlike Formal or non-Formal learning, Informal Learning is not organised or externally structured in terms of objectives, time or learning support.
(56) Learning Outcomes are the expression of the set of knowledge, skills and the application of the knowledge and skills a person has acquired and is able to demonstrate as a result of learning.
(57) Nested Awards means a sequence offered at different levels which enables a Student to progress from a lower level qualification into a higher level qualification to enable multiple entry and exit points.
(58) Non-Formal Learning means learning that takes place through a structured program of learning but does not lead to an officially accredited qualification.
(59) Permission to Enrol Elsewhere means pre-approved studies undertaken by a Student enrolled in a University of New England course at another University, for Advanced Standing towards the University of New England course.
(60) Recognition of Prior Learning is a process that involves assessment of an individual's relevant prior learning (including Formal, Informal and non-Formal learning) to determine the outcomes of an application for Advanced Standing. Recognition can take the form of a reduced Volume of Learning or credit points that count towards a course or an Exemption of a requirement to undertake a core, prescribed or pre-requisite unit of study.
(61) Specified Credit is defined in clause 10ai of the Rule.
(62) University Representative means a University employee (casual, fixed term and permanent), contractor, agent, appointee, UNE Council member, adjunct, visiting academic and any other person engaged by the University to undertake some activity for or on behalf of the University. It includes corporations and other bodies falling into one or more of these categories.
(63) Unspecified Advanced Standing is defined in clause 10aii of the Rule.
(64) Volume of Learning is a dimension of the complexity of a qualification. It is used with the level criteria and qualification type descriptor to determine the depth and breadth of the Learning Outcomes of a qualification. The volume of learning identifies the notional duration of all activities required for the achievement of the Learning Outcomes specified for a particular AQF qualification type. It is expressed in equivalent full-time years.