2.7 Periodic Scheme Review

1. All taught schemes (undergraduate and postgraduate, including collaborative and franchised schemes), will be subject to Periodic Scheme Review (PSR) every 5 years. New schemes will be approved for a 5 year period or until the next scheduled PSR. The Acadermic Registry will maintain a register of schemes to be reviewed, and faculties will invite departments to confirm that this list is accurate and current, taking account of schemes that are to be withdrawn or suspended.


2. The timeframe for PSR will be determined by Academic Board in consultation with faculties. Where it is feasible to do so, joint events will be scheduled to coincide with review visits by external Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs), or with the University’s internal IDPA process. If a PSRB review is conducted by a process and panel consistent with PSR, the faculty may approve the re-approval of schemes based on the report of the external body.


3. The membership of the PSR Approval Panel will be determined bythe faculty in discussions with the Academic Registry, but will include the following:

(i) Chair, an experienced member of academic staff;

(ii) One academic member of staff, normally the Faculty’s Associate Dean (Learning and Teaching);

(iii) An external assessor, normally a serving external examiner (normally a maximum of two externals);

(iv) A member of Academic Registry staff;

(v) A student representative from within the faculty, or from a cognate discipline.


Once the membership has been agreed by Academic Board, the Academic Registry will convene the PSR panel in accordance with the published timeframe. The academic department will be invited to nominate scheme coordinators or theme leaders to attend the meeting to summarise the main aims of the scheme and to answer the panel’s questions.


4. Departments will be required to provide the following documentation for PSR, following initial discussions at faculty level committees:
(i) PSR Evaluation template, which will provide reflection on the development of the schemes since the previous PSR or initial approval, a summary of cumulative changes, and an outline of steps taken to address the inclusive curriculum;

(ii) A revised Programme Specification for all schemes under review.


The panel chair may also request copies of the following documentation in advance of the meeting: AMTS1/2 forms, external examiner reports, NSS data sets and /or any relevant PSRB reports for the previous five years. The documentation will be uploaded by faculties onto a designated PSR SharePoint site which will be hosted by the Academic Registry.


5. The Academic Registry will invite thedepartment to nominate an external assessor(s), drawn from its currently serving external examiners. A PSR panel will normally include no more than two external assessors. Academic Registry will invite the external assessor(s) to submit a written PSR External Report for consideration by the panel.


6. The panel will be required to consider the following areas, in accordance with the expectation and indicators of Chapter B8 of the QAA Quality Code:

(i) Ensure the currency and validity of the schemes under review, in light of developing knowledge in the discipline area and any cumulative changes during the period since initial approval / previous PSR;

(ii) Evaluate the attainment of scheme learning outcomes by students, referring as appropriate to previous AMTS reports and data sets, and reports of external examiners;

(iii) Evaluate the continuing effectiveness of the curriculum and the assessment regime in relation to scheme learning outcomes;

(iv) Identify any areas of weakness, and make recommendations for appropriate actions.


7. The Academic Registry panel member will prepare a report of the PSR meeting, which will provide an outline of the discussion and a record of the panel’s decisions and recommendations. The panel will arrive at one of the following recommendations for each scheme or groups of schemes under review:

(i) Unconditional re-approval;

(ii) Conditional re-approval, subject to minor modifications being fulfilled within a given time limit;

(iii) Major restructure, which may require a Schemapp1 proposal to be submitted to the relevant Faculty Academic Affisrs Committee (FAAC);

(iv) Withdrawal or suspension.


The panel may also make University level recommendations for consideration by Academic Board.


8. In the case of a decision of withdrawal or suspension, the faculty will be asked to submit the Schemapp7 form to the  FAAC, making appropriate arrangements to ensure that all candidates who have already embarked on a scheme may complete their studies.


9. The academic department will be invited to respond to the report by completing Section B of the PSR Evaluation, which will be reviewed by the Chair of the Panel. If the Chair is satisfied that there are no issues of concern then the decision of the panel in respect of the schemes under review shall be considered final and reported to the faculty. Where there are any issues of concern the final decisions shall be referred to the appropriate committee at faculty level.