APPROVED/ CIRCULATED Heriot-Watt University
UNDERGRADUATE STUDIES COMMITTEE MINUTES
In the Chair: Prof A A Prior Date: 14 March 2007
Present also: Prof P F G Banfill, Prof D Cobham, , Dr P Green, Dr S D Houston, Prof R J Pooley,
Dr J J Raemaekers, Dr J Sanders, , Dr G B Thomson, Dr C Tinker, Dr M Youngson, Mr R Webb In attendance: Mr M Bates (item 17 only), Ms H Crosby (Clerk)
Apologies: Prof B Austin, Dr J B C Davies, Dr S J Dewar, Dr J Parker, Dr N Taylor, Mrs T Wilkinson 17 ADMISSIONS ANNUAL REPORT
The Director of Recruitment and Admissions presented the Admission’s Annual Report for 2006/7, which incorporated a review of the 2006/7 intake, current admissions trends for 2007 entry and strategic development. The Committee was informed of a PME approval (in principle) to open a Study Group International Student Centre in Edinburgh and Dubai in 2008; it was confirmed that
Undergraduate Studies Committee would be invited to approve the proposal in due course.
Members discussed the decliners’ survey which is conducted by the department every two years (run alternately between decliners and new entrants). The survey shows which universities students chose to attend instead of HWU. The Committee suggested that it would be useful to know which universities students declined in order to attend HWU; the Director of Recruitment and Admissions offered to explore the possibility of providing such information.
18 MINUTES (12 February 2007) Approved as an accurate record.
19 MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES (USC/07/11)
19.1 Item 6.1, New Course: Graduate Diploma in Interpreting Studies & Skills (British Sign Language/English) C4IS
British Sign Language 0 (C44BS) British Sign Language A (C44BT) British Sign Language B (C44BU) British Sign Language C (C44BV)
British Sign Language: Culture & Community (C44BW) Communication, Translation & Interpreting Studies (C44CT) Interpreting Studies & Practice A (C44IS)
Interpreting Studies & Practice B (C44IT) Text & Translation (C44TT)
The School has submitted a response which is currently being considered by those members who considered the original proposal. (Clerk’s Note: the Convener has subsequently
approved the proposals on behalf of the Committee, with effect from October 2007).
19.2 Item 13.2, Modified Course: BSc Information Technology (F2L1)
The School submitted a response to confirm that students will be provided with additional support to ensure they are academically prepared to undertake module F72XB. The Convener subsequently approved the proposal, with effect from October 2006. 20 DEAN’S BUSINESS
20.1 Combined Studies Named Degrees (USC/07/12)
In June 2006, the Undergraduate Studies Committee agreed the principle of named Combined Studies degrees which could be awarded to students who had satisfactorily completed a set number of modules from other Schools (at SCQF levels 9 and 10). Directors of Learning and Teaching had been asked to confirm discipline names and excluded
session 2006/07 as no students are due to graduate with the Psychology discipline. The Committee approved the proposal to award Combined Studies Named Degrees as confirmed by the Schools. The proposal will be reported to Senate for final approval and subsequently forwarded to the Ordinances and Regulations Committee for revision of the appropriate University Regulations.
20.2 Proposed Modification to Regulation 46: Accreditation of Prior Learning (USC/07/13) The Committee received a proposal from the Convener of the Ordinances and Regulations Committee (ORC) to consider a modification to Regulation 46: Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) prior to approval by ORC. The proposal arose after a School enquired about the award criteria for students entering directly onto the final stage of a course; for example, a course has an approved award criteria that includes year 4 and year 3 modules; how is a decision reached about a student who has directly entered into year 4 from another
institution? The proposed modification would ensure each course of study clearly indicated the award criteria and method for calculating the degree classification in the case of students being admitted to the final stage of a course. The Committee approved the proposal.
21 MODIFICATIONS TO COURSE(S) / MODULE(S) FOR NOTIFICATION ONLY (USC/07/14)
On behalf of the Committee, the Convenor had considered and approved minor modifications as set out in paper USC/07/14.
22 MODIFICATIONS TO COURSE(S) / MODULE(S) FOR APPROVAL (USC/07/15) School of Life Sciences
The following proposals were considered by the Committee and were not approved. The School is asked provide further information (as detailed below), which will be considered by the Convener on behalf of the Committee, with a view to formal approval.
22.1 New Course: BSc (Hons) Psychological Studies (A4PL) New Modules: Project I, II, III (A44PS/T/U)
The new course (with three new project modules at stage 4) was proposed (wef Oct 07) in order to allow students to continue with a degree in psychology if they meet the University’s requirements for a BSc Honours Degree but fail to meet the requirements for the existing accredited degree.
The Committee noted that the three project module descriptors were almost identical descriptors and were unhelpful as there was no information on the work that students would be expected to complete within each term. The proposal could not be approved until a signature was obtained from the School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences.
22.2 Modified Course: BSc (Hons) Applied Psychology (A4AP) New Module: Professional Practice (A42FY)
Modified Module: Psychobiology (A42BE) Withdrawn Module: Applied Psychology II (A43LY)
The Committee considered proposed modifications to stages 2 and 3 of course A4AP (to take effect from October 2007). Modifications included the introduction of a brand new module (A42FY), a change of level for module A42BE, the withdrawal of module A43LY and the introduction of other mandatory and optional modules.
The rationale offered on the course proposal paperwork explained that the reason for moving A42BE2 to level 3 was because “the British Psychological Society requires core material to be delivered in the third year of the degree”. Further enquiries with a member of SLS staff revealed that the requirement was related to module assessment needing to be part of the honours material. The School was asked to confirm the rationale for modification of the course.
With reference to the proposal to change module A42BE from stage 2 to stage 3, the
Committee questioned whether the module met with SCQF level 9 requirements. Further enquiries with the School had ascertained that the module was considered too difficult for SCQF level 9, however, the School was asked to confirm this was the case and provide reassurance that the module meets with appropriate SCQF requirements.
It was noted that assessment of module A42FY was by assignment but re-assessment was by coursework. The School was asked to provide confirmation of the accuracy of the re-assessment arrangements and, if correct, explain why the re-assessments differ and how the arrangements would work.
22.3 Modified Courses: BSc (Hons) Biology with Sport and Exercise Science (A3B1) BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science (pre-2005) (A351) Withdrawn Module: Environmental Exercise Physiology 1 (A33EF)
Modifications to the courses at stage 3 (wef April 2007) involved the removal of module A33EF (which was to be fully withdrawn). The optional modules A13CE and A13NU for course A3B1 would become mandatory and for A351 students would be required to take an optional module instead of the withdrawn mandatory module (A33EF). With reference to the withdrawal of module A33EF, the Committee requested that the School provide reassurance that the learning outcomes of the course would not be compromised or have a negative
impact for future years, particularly on progression. SLS
22.4 Modified Course: BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science with Management (A381) Modifications to the course at stage 3 (wef April 2007) involved the removal of module A33EF and the introduction of optional modules in term 3. Approval of the modifications was dependent upon information from the School regarding the withdrawal of module A33EF (as detailed in 22.3 above).
22.5 Modified Course: BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science with Psychology (A371) Proposed modifications to stage 3, term 3 (effective from April 2007) included the removal of module A33EF and the introduction of two optional modules.
Modifications to stages 1, 2 and 3, effective from October 2007 were proposed. Three optional modules at stage 1 were to be changed to mandatory and the remaining optional modules removed. At stage 2, a number of changes were proposed which included the removal and replacement of term 1 and 2 modules mandatory/optional modules, and
modules being changed from mandatory to optional. In stage 3, a term 3 mandatory module was replaced.
The Committee requested that the School provides a summary of the proposed changes
(which were not clear from the paperwork provided). SLS
22.6 Modified Course: BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science (2005 entry onwards) (A312) Proposed modifications to stage 3, effective from 16 April 2007, included the removal of term 3 module A33EF; students would be required to take an optional module instead.
Proposed modifications to stage 4, effective from October 2007 involved the temporary removal of term 2 optional module A42BE.
As with point 22.3 above, the Committee requested that the School provide reassurance that the learning outcomes of the course would not be compromised or have a negative impact for future years, particularly on progression.
School of Textiles and Design
The following proposals were considered by the Committee and were not approved. The School is asked to provide further information (as detailed below). With exception to the submissions for E113, BSc (Hons) Textiles & Fashion Design Management which must be resubmitted to the next UGSC meeting, the School is asked to submit a response and revised paperwork for consideration by the Convener on behalf of the Committee, with a view to formal approval.
A number of the proposals from the School of Textiles and Design were retrospective. The School approached Academic Registry to query the status of structures on ISS which did not match the School’s own records. A meeting between Course Directors and Academic Registry took place and it became apparent that some modifications had been approved at School level but had not been submitted to UGSC and other modifications had been embedded within course structures previously submitted to UGSC but were not specifically addressed on the proposal documents; the
modifications were therefore not considered or approved. The current submissions are to address any differences between the approved structure and the delivered structure. The Committee emphasised the importance that future changes should be approved by UGSC prior to implementation.
22.7 Modified Course: BA (Hons) Fashion Design for Industry (E112) New Module: Fashion Design and Make (E13NM)
Modified Module: Fashion Fabrics Print (E13FH)
Modifications, effective from October 2006, included changing the level 3 module E13FH, (currently delivered at stage 1) to level 1. The School is asked to confirm which review process revealed the requirement to change the module level and whether the other stage 3 modules have been reviewed in the same way.
With reference to the new module, E13NM, the submission sheet indicated the reason for introduction as an opportunity to “provide a live/commercial project in collaboration with an industry partner” but the module descriptor provided no elaboration of such a project. The School is requested to revise the module descriptor accordingly.
A number of errors within documentation for the course and modules were noted, including the recording of SCOTCAT credits (instead of SCQF), the inclusion of modules under progression requirements which did not appear on the course structure and assessment weightings. The School is requested to amend and resubmit the documentation (as indicated above and as communicated by the Clerk) for consideration by the Convener on behalf of the Committee, with a view to formal approval.
TEX 22.8 Modified Course: BA (Hons) Design for Textiles (Fashion, Interior, Art) (E125)
Modifications, effective from October 2006, included the movement of mandatory and optional modules between terms (at stage 2). The Committee requested that the School confirmed whether students from other Schools were affected by the movement of the modules between terms. The Clerk would liaise with the School regarding appropriate amendments to the documentation.
22.9 Modified Course: BSc (Hons) Textiles & Fashion Design Management (E113) New Module: Introduction to Fashion Styling (E12FE)
Withdrawn Module: Design Management 1C (E12MC)
Modifications effective from October 2006, included the movement of mandatory modules between terms (at stage 2). An amendment at stage 4 involved the change of a module title as detailed in paper USC/07/14.
Modifications effective from October 2007, included the introduction of module E12DL at term 2 stage 2, in place of module E12CC and the introduction of new module E12FE to replace withdrawn module E12MC at term 3 stage 2.
The Committee requested that the School confirmed whether students from other Schools were affected by the movement of the modules between terms. Information provided within the documentation was inaccurate and incomplete. The School is required to resubmit the proposals to the next meeting of the Undergraduate Studies Committee.
22.10 Modified Module: History of Art & Design 2 (E12DO)
With effective from October 2006, the module would move from term 2 to term 3. The documentation was incomplete. The School was required to submit revised documentation, as advised by the Clerk, for consideration by the Convener on behalf of the Committee, with a view to formal approval.
22.11 Modified Modules: CAD/CAM 1 (E12CC) Digital Imaging 2 (E12DL)
The proposal was to change the terms of delivery for E12CC and E12DL with effect from October 2006 and October 2007 respectively. Changes had been considered as part of the relevant course modifications at which point the Committee requested that the School confirmed whether students from other Schools were affected by the movement of the modules between terms.
23 APPOINTMENT OF EXTERNAL EXAMINERS (USC/07/16)
The Committee considered and approved an extension to the appointment of Mr C Lockyer as an External Examiner (as outlined in paper USC/07/16). Extenuating circumstances were offered in support of the application to extend Mr Lockyer’s contract from four years to five. There had been a misclarification of the Examiner’s actual commencement date which had resulted in Mr Lockyer examining beyond his term of office. The application was therefore approved; however, the
Committee indicated that an application for Mr Lockyer’s replacement should be submitted to the next meeting of UGSC.
24 STUDENT APPEALS (USC/07/17)
The Convener, acting on behalf of the Committee, had considered and approved proposals submitted by Schools and/or students, for student appeals as outlined in paper USC/07/17.
25 ANY OTHER BUSINESS None.
26 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 25 April 2007 in the Court Room, Lord Balerno Building, Edinburgh Campus, at 3.30pm. Items for the Agenda, Papers and apologies should be submitted to the Clerk, Ms Helen Crosby, by Wednesday 11 April 2007.
H Crosby Clerk 23 Mar 07