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Frequently Asked Questions

ISSUES CONCERNING DESIGN PRINCIPLES

In following the standard delivery pattern for provision at Level C, Level I and Level H, can we average out the hours so that students might do more hours than the standard in the first semester and less in the second?

The delivery pattern has been approved on the understanding that students will experience a consistent pattern of contact across the year. So, no.   
 Can I offer choice at Level I?  The approved curriculum map for the IC does not allow for choice at Level I. Certain areas, particularly those involving professional practice, have rather different requirements and these are being handled separately.  
QUESTIONS FOCUSING ON ASSESSMENTS
The template talks about the examination covering all lectures. Please could you provide more detail about how this is intended to work in practice?
The suggestion is that for each 60 credits of provision there will be ONE 3 hour exam. Three questions should be answered. 
The first section on the exam paper is a compulsory section - based on all the lectures, and reflective/integrative. Students MUST answer a question from this section.
 
Then there should be a further X sections where X is the total number of seminar groups/themes or at Level H, options. Students then have choice about which sections they answer questions from. It seems likely that they will choose questions relating to the seminar options they've taken. This is not seen as being a problem.  

When specifying word counts, what length is appropriate for assignments/essays within the Integrated Curriculum framework? 

 

Should the essay word lengths be as they would have been before the Integrated Curriculum? 

The new delivery pattern under the IC carries with it a new assessment regime, so you must not assume that the assessment regime for this years provision will be appropriate when the IC is introduced. 

A simple illustration follows. 

In old money, at Level I (for a 60 credit major) you may have had two x 30 credit 'modules' (600 learning hours in total). Each 30 credit of provision accounts for 50% of the overall assessment at Level I and each has a two hour exam and a 3000 word essay. So 2 essays totalling 6000 words. Setting the exams aside, to maintain that load you now have 6000 words to apportion across THREE assessments within the IC  (2 x seminars and 1x tutorial linked assessment).

At Level I, seminars are to be 50% of the total and the tutorial-linked assessment is 25%. So that would suggest a 2000-word equivalent portfolio (or whatever) and two 2000 word essays (or equivalent assessments). 

Clearly the assessment strategy can be variable and must be appropriate for the provision described, but this might make a useful entry point for your thinking. 

 ISSUES CONCERNING STUDENTS 
What happens to students who fail and have to retake?

For Level I students it is expected that they will move to the provision offered under the integrated curriculum. 

For Level H students there are a number of factors which will need to be taken into account. It is expected that wherever possible, and assuming a good 'fit' between extant Level H and Level H under the integrated curriculum, students will move to Level H.

However, given the nature of the curriculum at Level H (which builds on the curricula at Levels I and C) it may not be reasonable to expect a student who has studied a substantially different curriculum 2012-13 to move to the new Level H provision 2013-14. In such cases programme teams should develop and document an alternative provision which will be provided to students who fail and have to retake (with attendance).

In cases where there is no Level H provision next year (this is the last year that the course is provided) again it is expected that a reasonable and coherent programme of study will be provided to any student who has to resit with attendance, reflecting the provision undertaken this year

Is it expected that provision for next years’ Level H (i.e. legacy students) should be in accordance with the new norms for the IC? Yes, if possible.

It may be the case for legacy provision, that the norms for delivery (5 hours core + 5 hours additional for single honours students) can be accommodated but that there are issues around the curriculum and/or assessment (this might be particularly because the curriculum they have followed in the first two years does not equip them for the ‘new’ Level H curriculum within the IC framework).

Where a programme is in its final year (there will be no level H provision next year) then consideration must be given to any student who fails and who is required to resit with attendance. In such cases, a separate document detailing the provision to be offered / undertaken will be necessary to ensure that the provision is approved and that a coherent programme is offered to any student falling within this category

 

How do I document legacy provision?

 

 

Three aspects need to be considered: the curriculum itself, delivery patterns and assessment. If all three of these can accommodate legacy students, then no further action is needed.

If provision for legacy students needs to be different, then a separate, much shorter document should be prepared (template on the IC webpages) which includes a curriculum map, assessment map and brief statement about delivery pattern. If the delivery pattern means that Legacy Level H provision falls short of the University norms for delivery within the IC, this must be discussed with the Dean at the earliest opportunity.

 

What about International (Exchange) Students?

 

This does not affect Level C. It will help if you design your curriculum (at Level I especially) to make it easier to split into termly provision, but this need not constrain you. Departments/Programme teams will be asked to provide information for marketing purposes shortly. There will need to be some form of light touch approvals process for the package that will be offered to students studying at LHU for either a term or a year.

ISSUES CONCERNING DOCUMENTATION - CONTENT

 

I thought the Programme Specification had to be a separate document for each Award?

 

 

 

 It does. Where the provision is simply Core there is no issue. Otherwise there are two approaches:

(1)  You can complete one template document covering all requirements. If you do this, the document will later need to be taken apart to create two (three if QTS is offered and is different) separate Programme Specifications – that would be part of the Annual Monitoring Process in June. Keeping the Core and Additional (and QTS if necessary) separate at the paragraph level in the narrative would minimise the work that will be required later. The document will possibly also need simplification – see end of point 2 below.

 (2)  You can do separate documents, which will have a good deal in common. This would be one document for Core provision, another document for the Additional Single Honours provision, and if required a third document for QTS Specialist Subject (if different from Core). Starting with Core and expanding it to cover Single Honours and or QTS if necessary might be the best way to go about this. The documents would still need to be reviewed at AMR to adapted as necessary for a prospective student readership – the depth of detail appropriate for an approval activity is likely to be too great for readability by prospective students.

My subject is open to QTS students, who will be taking the Core as it stands. Can I just label everything Core, so long as I spell out that it includes QTS? Yes – but the problems of School Block Experience, at Level I and Level H in particular, often necessitate separate delivery patterns, and this needs to be reflected in the appropriate places. We are trying to ascertain what the SBE patterns will be for next year at least so you are able to build this in. It is hoped that it will not affect Level C. 
Our provision is being revalidated. Last time we had a lot to say about how our programme has been drawn upon against the subject benchmark - in fact, we're quite proud of it.  Surely the External Assessor, as a subject specialist, should be given some insight into this?  

 

Answer  Yes - we suggest you draw on what you've already done, updating it where appropriate. Please add something like this to the box in part B1 which has been prepopulated with the minimal comment that is all that prospective students need: 'Please see below for further discussion of the fit with the Benchmark Statement'. Then immediately below the boxes, but before Aims, put a free-format heading 'Relationship with Subject Benchmark Statement' and provide the information there. (This will ease the later task of turning these documents into publishable Programme Specifications, as simple deletions will be all that is needed. See the question about Programme Specs) 

Note 1 Subject areas may have other external reference points, and showing your external how you have drawn on these can only be helpful. Please expand this are as appropriate.

Note 2: if your provision is being treated as a Major Modification, so is going to your existing external examiner and not having a separate event, you may wish to enhance the document as described above, but this is not mandatory.   

 Are there any norms for the size/content of the reading list? 

Answer No, as long as you give enough for the external person to get a feel for what's involved.  It needs to be key texts, and if you make much use of journals it would be useful to demonstrate this with an example or two. Some people have adopted a 10-15-20 approach for the levels from C up to H (for each 60 credits) and that seems very adequate. This is NOT meant to be the definitive reading list as it is/will be presented in the Student Handbooks. 

Should I break the reading list down by lectures/seminars? If you feel that would be helpful to the readers, yes please.  It might be especially desirable at Level H where there are seminar choices. 
ISSUES CONCERNING DOCUMENTATION – LAYOUT
I don’t have a colour printer and am finding the colour-coding hard to read. Is it OK to delete the background colours?

Yes, of course. A blank black and white curriculum map will also be made available 30/1/13 on the webpage itself. 

 

UPDATE - the blank black and white template is available (1/3/13)