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«EXPLANATORY NOTES AND GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR TAUGHT AWARDS 2006 This Diploma Supplement follows the model developed by the ...»

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Diploma Supplement



This Diploma Supplement follows the model developed by the European Commission, Council of Europe and UNESCO/CEPES. The

purpose of the supplement is to provide sufficient recognition of qualifications (diplomas, degrees, certificates etc). It is designed to

provide a description of the nature, level, context, content and status of studies that were pursued and successfully completed by the individual named on the original qualification to which this supplement is appended. It should be free from any value judgements, equivalence statements or suggestions about recognition.

It is issued as two elements as follows:

• A transcript (‘Statement of Academic Record’) setting out the personal and academic information on an individual holder of one of the University’s awards as required under sections 1, 2, 4, 5.2, 6 and 7 of the model;

• These supplementary notes and general description of the requirements for taught awards at the University setting out the information required under sections 2.3, 2.4, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6.2 and 8 of the model.

The two elements do not constitute a Diploma Supplement unless they have been issued together in support of an official certificate confirming the award of a degree or other academic qualification.


1.1 Family Name 1.2 Given Name 1.3 Date of Birth 1.4 Student Identification Number/Code are shown on the transcript element of this Supplement.

The Identification Number shown is the unique Student Number for a student registered at the University of Ulster or at one of its approved partner institutions (see 2.4).

The HESA Number shown is the unique national identifying/reference number for students registered at a university in the UK from the Higher Education Statistics Agency, UK.


2.1 Name of the qualification and the title conferred 2.2 Main field(s) of study for the qualification are shown on the transcript element of this Supplement.

2.3 Name and Status of the Awarding Institution(s) (in original language) The University of Ulster was established by Royal Charter on 1 October 1984. It was formed by the merger of The New University of Ulster and the Ulster Polytechnic. It is recognised by the UK authorities as having the power to award its own degrees: see www.dfes.gov.uk/recognisedukdegrees/. The power to award degrees is protected by UK law.

The University also makes Higher National Diploma and Higher National Certificate awards of the Edexcel Foundation. It is authorised to make these awards under a Licence Agreement with the Foundation. See www.edexcel.org.uk.

The University may also make joint awards with other bodies. In these instances, that institution’s name is also recorded. Joint awards are currently made with the state Higher Education and Training Awards Council of the Republic of Ireland (see www.hetac.ie).

2.4 Name and Status of Institution (if different from 2.3) administering studies (in original language) Some students of partner institutions follow programmes of study validated by the University to lead to one of its academic awards or those of the Edexcel Foundation. The University’s current partners are listed at www.ulster.ac.uk/academicoffice/ under Partner Institutions (see annex). The majority of these are colleges of further and higher education in Northern Ireland which are recognised by the UK authorities as being able to offer courses leading to a degree of a recognised body such as the University: see www.dfes.gov.uk.recognisedukdegrees/. The other bodies in Northern Ireland are public sector or charitable organisations. The overseas institutions in China and Hong Kong are public sector or tertiary educational bodies approved by the relevant authorities. The School of Hotel and Tourism Management International in Switzerland is a private organisation.

The University issues transcripts for such students studying for Edexcel HNDs or HNCs. For students of these institutions who have been made another award of the University the transcript element of this Diploma Supplement is provided by the institution.

2.5 Language of Instruction/Examination The University’s programmes are all taught and examined in the English language, except where the subject of the degree warrants all or part of the teaching and assessment to be in another language (for example, the BA degrees in modern languages).


3.1 Level of Qualification The University’s undergraduate and taught postgraduate programmes lead to one of the awards set out in the following table. This summary of the minimum attendance, study and credit requirements is derived from the relevant award regulations and regulatory framework which should be consulted for full details of requirements – see www.ulster.ac.uk/governance/charter.html and www.ulster.


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Notes: *Diplomas and Certificates require at least 90 and 40 credit points respectively at Level 1 to be at EWNI Certificate level.

Credit points: 10 notional learning hours = 1 credit point. Credit levels: M = Master’s; 1 – 3 = undergraduate with 3 at final honours level;

A = Access, a pre-HE standard. In some awards some credit requirements may be fulfilled through arrangements for the accreditation of prior learning.

Section 8 shows the place of the University’s awards in the national education awards structure for England, Wales and Northern Ireland (EWNI) and in the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) education cycle.

3.2 Official Length of Programme Duration is recorded under 3.1 in calendar years (48 weeks), years (the academic year of 2 semesters: 30 weeks), or where the required duration of full-time studies is less than a year, as one semester (15 weeks). Part-time study takes proportionately longer according to the student’s pace of study. For second cycle Postgraduate awards the standard year comprises a committed workload of at least 1800 hours.

For short and first cycle and other Undergraduate awards the standard year comprises a committed workload of at least 1200 hours. The Certificate and Diploma in Area Studies, Industrial Studies, and Professional Practice are additional undergraduate awards made in recognition of a one-year period of study abroad or work placement as an integral part of the course.

Programme duration may vary according to discipline: the actual duration of study is shown on the transcript element of this Supplement.

3.3 Access Requirements Postgraduate Programmes The minimum entry requirement for admission to a taught Master’s programme is for candidates to be graduates of the University or an other approved university or institution of higher education with at least the degree of Bachelor in an appropriate discipline with secondclass Honours or its equivalent or, if not graduates, to possess other qualifications and/or experience which are recognised by the University as the equivalent of an Honours degree of Bachelor through its procedures for the accreditation of prior certificated or experiential learning. For admission to a postgraduate certificate or postgraduate diploma the entry standard is a non-Honours degree or equivalent.

Undergraduate Programmes and the Integrated Master of Engineering The minimum entry requirements for admission to a Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate, which are graduate conversion courses, are an Honours or non-Honours degree or equivalent.

The minimum entry requirements for admission to an Honours or non-Honours degree or MEng are passes in five subjects in GCSE (Grade A-C)/GCE ‘A-Level’ examinations, including at least two subjects at grade A-E at GCE ‘A-Level’ and English at GCSE, or acceptable alternatives.

The minimum entry requirements for admission to a Foundation degree, Associate Bachelor’s degree, Diploma of Higher Education, Edexcel Higher National Diploma or Certificate or Certificate of Higher Education are passes in four subjects in GCSE (Grades AC)/GCE ‘A-Level’, including at least one subject at grade A-E at GCE ‘A-Level’ and English at GCSE, or acceptable alternatives.

The minimum entry requirements for admission to an Advanced Certificate or Advanced Diploma are a Certificate of Higher Education and English at GCSE (Grade A-C) or acceptable alternatives.

The minimum entry requirements for admission to Certificates and Diplomas are five subjects at GCSE (Grades A-C) including English or acceptable alternatives.

Alternatives to GCE A-Level include Intermediate GNVQ and Advanced GNVQ/Advanced VCE, International or European or Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma, Edexcel/OCR National Diploma/Certificate, a recognised Access course or the assessment of an applicant’s prior certificated or experiential learning through the University’s procedures for the accreditation of such learning.

Access Diplomas are preparatory programmes designed for students who have been out of formal education for some time. Applicants are required to have a basic level of written and oral English communication and numeracy skills and to be able to demonstrate the motivation and ability to cope with the demands of the course.

All Programmes

In addition all applicants whose first language is not English must, before they are admitted to a programme of study, provide evidence that they have attained at least IELTS band score of 6.0 overall or a paper-based TOEFL score of 550 or a computer-based TOEFL score of 213 or an Internet-based TOEFL score of 79.

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The mode of study of the programme undertaken for the award (full-time or part-time) is indicated on the transcript element of this supplement.

4.2 Programme Requirements The University publishes the learning outcomes of its programmes in the programme specifications accessible through the University’s website at: www.prospectus.ulster.ac.uk. Details of programme requirements for courses at one of the University’s partner institutions are available from the institution concerned (see 2.4).

4.3 Programme Details (modules studied and individual marks/grades/credits obtained) are shown on the transcript element of this supplement.

4.4 Grading Scheme and, if available, Grade Distribution and Guidance Modules are assessed by coursework and/or examination. Percentage marks are generally used to record student achievement, although some modules or components may be assessed on a pass/fail basis only. The pass mark in modules in undergraduate programmes is 40% and in postgraduate programmes 50%. The overall mark in the module is determined by the weighting given to each assessment component as determined by its assessment strategy. In accordance with University award regulations and those of the specific programme failure in a limited number of modules in any year may be condoned, ie the student is permitted to proceed without repeating the failed assessment, provided that the failed mark is not less than 5% below the pass mark and the student’s average in the module or year is at least 5% above the pass mark. Where a failure is not condoned, a candidate may repeat the module assessment in full or in part, in which case the minimum pass mark or the actual mark achieved, whichever is the lower, is recorded. Further information on the generic assessment criteria set by the University to guide marking in qualitative and quantitative work at each level (A, 1, 2, 3, M) is available at www.ulster.ac.uk/academicoffice/Policies.html under Assessment.

Award and Classification Students’ eligibility for award is determined on the basis of their satisfying the programme outcomes and regulations by completing all compulsory and sufficient optional modules at the appropriate level(s) in the prescribed manner.

Candidates’ overall performance in their course is derived from individual module results.

The percentages used to determine overall gradings/classifications are set out in the following table:

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*Excluding Edexcel awards.

To be eligible for a particular class of degree or for Commendation or Distinction, candidates must achieve the requisite mark in their overall summary result and in modules contributing to at least half the overall credit value of modules which determine the final award. In calculating the overall mark each module’s contribution is weighted according to its credit value. For the award of Distinction in Master’s courses, a mark of at least 70% must be obtained in the overall average and in modules amounting to 90 credit points including the dissertation (where available).

The overall mark is derived from the results for all modules in awards of up to 180 credit points (certificate, diploma, Master’s). In University awards of a value of 240 credit points or more (AB, Fd, DipHE or Honours degree), the final 120 points normally determines the overall summary mark. Exceptions in Honours degrees are permitted where required by a professional body. In non-Honours degrees, the modules at the final level must contribute at least one-third to the calculation of the overall result.

The Edexcel HND and HNC are not graded overall but each module is graded according to the following bands: 40-59% Pass; 60-74% Merit; 75-100% Distinction.

4.5 Overall Classification of the Qualification (in original language): is shown on the transcript element of this supplement.

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5.1 Access to Further Study A second cycle Master’s degree of the University gives access to postgraduate research (Doctoral) programmes.

A first cycle Bachelor’s degree of the University with second-class honours or above gives access to taught Master’s degrees or to postgraduate research programmes. A first cycle Bachelor’s degree of the University gives access to Graduate Diplomas, Graduate Certificates, Postgraduate Diplomas and Postgraduate Certificates (which may be offered through linked postgraduate diplomas/ Master’s).

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