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Course and Subject Information Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) This procedure supports the Course and Subject Policy by setting detailed requirements for subject and course information including:

  1. published information and subject outlines; and
  2. course and subject names and coding on systems.

(2) This procedure is intended to ensure that information about courses and subjects is:

  1. complete, accurate and of a consistently high standard, so it will form a sound basis for the enrolment contract with students;
  2. published in good time for prospective and current students to make decisions about their applications, enrolment and to prepare for study; and
  3. consistently and correctly recorded on University systems, so it will meet the requirements of regulators and funders and be a sufficient record of the University’s curriculum.

References

(3) Where a supporting document is referenced in this procedure, it will be listed in the associated information tab.

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Section 2 - Glossary

(4) Most of the terms in this procedure are defined in the glossary section of the Course and Subject Policy. For the purposes of this procedure the following additional terms have the definitions stated:

  1. Administrative subject – a subject with no credit points value, and for which students receive no grade, created for an administrative purpose in relation to a course or courses.
  2. Assessment - the process of attributing value to the examined outcomes of any task that a student is required to undertake and complete in order to satisfy the requirements of their studies.
  3. Assessment tasks - a broad term that refers to all types of tasks used to assess student learning. It includes but is not limited to essays, tests, examinations, laboratory, workplace learning tasks, projects, productions, portfolios, presentations, performances and online activities.
  4. Assignment - any piece of work listed in the Assignment Information section of a subject outline which a student is required to complete to satisfy the requirements of the subject. It generally refers to assessment tasks that are not examination-based and that are generally completed over time.
  5. Descriptor – a phrase added to an award title in parentheses to indicate the discipline specialisation of a course or that a graduate has completed a specialisation as an optional sequence within a course.
  6. Indigenous Australian content – see the Indigenous Australian Content in Courses and Subjects Policy for the University’s definition of this type of content.
  7. Rubric – an evaluation tool or set of guidelines to ensure consistent marking of an assessment task; communicates expectations of learning outcomes and the criteria for assessing students’ levels of achievement of these.
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Section 3 - Policy 

(5) This procedure supports the Course and Subject Policy and should be read alongside that policy.

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Section 4 - Procedure

Authoritative course and subject information

(6) The requirements for a student to complete a course and gain the resulting award are stated in the University Handbook for the year in which the student is first enrolled in the course.

  1. The online course brochure provides prospective students with information about the course and its requirements, so they can make an informed decision whether to apply for the course.
  2. The online course brochure must not be inconsistent with the University Handbook entry for a course in such a way that students who rely on the online course brochure will find themselves disadvantaged by the actual course requirements stated in the University Handbook.
  3. The online course brochure and University Handbook entry for a course will be consistent with the curriculum management system course profile currently approved at the time they are published.
  4. A student may agree to meet different requirements to complete the course published in a later University Handbook.

(7) The requirements for a student to complete a subject are stated in the subject outline for the offering of the subject in which the student enrols.

  1. The University Handbook provides indicative information about assessment tasks in each subject. The relevant subject outline, however, states the actual assessment requirements students must complete to pass that offering of the subject.
  2. Subject outlines for offerings of a subject and the University Handbook entry for the subject will be consistent with the curriculum management system subject profile currently approved at the time they are published.

Conscientious objections to learning activities or assessment tasks

(8) Prospective students are responsible for checking the University Handbook entry for a course before they apply for it or enrol in it, to consider whether they may have a conscientious objection to its learning activities or assessment tasks.

(9) Similarly, students are responsible for checking subject outlines before they enrol in subjects, to consider whether they may have a conscientious objection to a subject’s learning activities or assessment tasks.

(10) The Course and Subject - Conscientious Objection Procedure states requirements for:

  1. course and subject information to inform students of uses of animals in learning activities and assessment tasks; and
  2. the time-frame and process for:
    1. a student to raise a concern about or conscientious objection to a learning activity or assessment task; and
    2. the teaching school to assess it and, where it is a conscientious objection, consider whether an alternative learning activity or assessment task can be substituted.
  3. Where, however, the learning activity or assessment task is essential to subject learning outcomes, or it would be too onerous or costly to provide an alternative, an alternative may not be available.

Offensive or confronting content in courses or subjects 

(11) The University may take reasonable and proportionate steps to ensure that all prospective students in any of its courses have an opportunity to be fully informed of the content of those courses, and current and prospective students should review handbook information and course and subject outlines where available before applying or enrolling.

(12) Staff are not required to preclude content from a course or subject solely on the grounds that it may offend, shock or confront any student or class of students. See the Course and Subject Design (Coursework) Procedure for more information on course design requirements.

Publishing information on courses

(13) A new course or changed version of a course may only be submitted with a ‘subject to final approval’ note for tertiary admission course information and university publications once the business case has been approved by the delegated officer. A course cannot admit students until it is approved as per academic accreditation delegations.

(14) A new course or changed version of a course may only be included in other promotional material with a ‘subject to final approval’ note once:

  1. the business case has been approved by the relevant Deputy Vice-Chancellor; and
  2. the faculty has provided all the information for promotion required by the Brand and Performance Marketing team.

(15) The only exception to the above restrictions on publication is a new double degree comprising two existing degrees, neither of which will have its structure changed to create the new double degree.

(16) All information on a course, where it gives the full name of the course, must give the course name stated in the curriculum management system course profile.

(17) Course-specific academic progress requirements such as key subjects or an approved maximum period of enrolment shorter than standard must be stated in the University Handbook entry for the course.

(18) All published information on a double degree course must state clearly whether graduates will receive:

  1. a testamur for each component single degree; or
  2. where one or both component single degrees are not offered individually, a single testamur with the double degree award title.

Information on residential schools and online intensives

(19) The Course and Subject Delivery and Management Procedure states the process and requirements for scheduling residential schools and online intensives.

(20) Once residential school dates have been approved, the Division of Student Administration publishes them to students in the web student portal.

(21) Where a residential school or online intensive is for a course as a whole rather than for a specific subject, the University Handbook entry for the course will explain why the residential school or online intensive is necessary.

Subject outlines

Preparation and checking of subject outlines

(22) The Subject Coordinator will prepare the subject outline.

  1. Where a subject has a Subject Convenor, they will prepare the master subject outline; then any Subject Coordinators for the subject will use the master subject outline as a template in preparing the subject outline for each subject offering for which they are responsible, in consultation with the Subject Convenor.

(23) Subject outlines will be published in the University’s learning management system, for each subject offering (by delivery mode) in each session, no later than 14 days before the session start-date.

(24) Administrative subjects and higher degree by research thesis subjects are an exception: no subject outline need be prepared for these.

(25) The Course and Subject Quality Assurance and Review Procedure states requirements for checking that subject outlines include the contents specified below, before they are published to students.

Content requirements for subject outlines

(26) The Course and Subject Policy requires that each delivery of a subject in a location or via a delivery mode will be consistent with the currently approved version of the subject. It will offer students the same learning experiences and learning outcomes, and will, as far as possible, require the same assessment tasks.

(27) Subject outlines must include the subject outline’s standard statements on:

  1. the acknowledgement of country;
  2. academic integrity;
  3. policies relevant to students;
  4. availability of special consideration and grade review;
  5. subject evaluation; and
  6. the requirement that students keep a copy of the subject outline.

(28) Subject outlines must:

  1. give the Subject Coordinator's phone number, email address and office room number (if they have an office), and arrangements for students to consult them such as consultation hours (these details must also be provided for other staff teaching the subject unless the staff are not yet known, in which case these can be provided via the online subject site once known);
  2. give the Student Central contact details so students can ask for a subject teaching staff member to contact them if they are unable to contact the staff member;
  3. describe the subject content and outcomes, and any assumed knowledge for the subject, as described in the current subject profile;
  4. include a schedule of topics and study activities;
  5. inform students of textbooks, learning materials and how to find them, and any other resources they will need to undertake the subject;
  6. describe how the subject will be taught, including (where applicable) details of classes per week, learning technologies and online learning spaces and how these will be used in learning, and how students are expected to engage in learning activities;
  7. state whether analytics will be used to monitor students’ learning and adapt teaching and/or support practices, and if so, how; and
  8. provide information on student expenses/time requirements, subject workload, residential schools and assessment as specified in more detail below.

(29) Where students are expected to spend time and/or money to access specialist equipment or resources, or to travel for subject activities, the subject outline must explain why.

(30) If a subject has been approved with a variation from the standard workload (see the Course and Subject Design (Coursework) Procedure), the subject outline will state the expected workload and explain why it varies from the standard.

(31) For each online subject offering, the subject outline will say whether there is a residential school and, if there is, whether this is compulsory, its location and duration, purpose and program of activities.

Assessment information in subject outlines

(32) The subject outline must:

  1. summarise the assessment tasks, giving their due dates, the dates they will be returned to students, and their percentage weighting in calculating the final subject grade;
  2. where an assessment task is a hurdle requirement, state that it is a hurdle requirement and what mark the student must achieve in the task to pass the subject;
  3. state any other requirements to pass the subject (participation, attendance);
  4. state the process to approve and notify students of any changes to the assessment in the subject (see the section on approval of subject outline changes in the Course and Subject Life Cycle Procedure); and
  5. explain academic and/or research integrity to students as relevant, namely:
    1. if the subject is a coursework subject, explain academic integrity, providing a link to the academic integrity web page for students;
    2. if the subject is a research component subject, explain research integrity, providing a link to the research integrity web page; or
    3. if the subject is a coursework subject but involves a research activity, explain both academic integrity and research integrity, and provide links to both the relevant web pages.

(33) The subject outline must provide the following detailed information about each assessment task:

  1. a task description;
  2. a rationale for the task in relation to the subject learning outcomes;
  3. for assessment tasks other than exams, tests and quizzes, the marking criteria and standards that will be used in marking, describing the standards that must be met to achieve each passing grade or (where relevant) a Satisfactory (SY) grade;
  4. for exams and tests, which learning activities and materials are to be tested;
  5. whether the task must be passed to pass the subject and, if so, any resubmission or second attempt process where there is such a process;
  6. whether marking of the task will give a numerical mark or a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory mark; if a numerical mark, an explanation of its relationship with the grading system used in the subject and what mark for the task equates to a pass;
  7. whether collaboration is permitted or encouraged and, if the task is collaborative, the expected amount and type of collaboration and how marks will be distributed among the group;
  8. where a task has a submission deadline, the deadline, submission process, date by which marked assessments will be returned and the return arrangement; grounds and process for extension requests (if permitted); and penalties for late submission (if permitted);
  9. where the task is an assignment, the circumstances under which it may be resubmitted;
  10. where the task is an exam or test, its duration and sitting date if known, or a statement that the sitting date will be in the exam timetable published by the Examinations Office; and a summary of its format that gives, at a minimum, the type of answers required (multiple choice, short answer, essay), materials to be provided by the University and by the student; and
  11. where the task involves referring to sources, the required reference style and a link to details of this style.

(34) Assessment criteria and standards will be communicated to students in the form of an assessment rubric.

  1. The Assessment - Conduct of Coursework Assessment and Examinations Procedure states the conditions on which assessment tasks can be excepted from this requirement.

Additional requirement for honours subject outlines

(35) The subject outline for each subject required for a one-year bachelor (honours) degree, or for the honours stream of an integrated bachelor (honours) degree, will state whether the grade for the subject will contribute to the level of honours of the award and, if so, how.

(36) The Assessment - Conduct of Coursework Assessment and Examinations Procedure states detailed requirements for return of assessment to students.

Additional requirements for workplace learning subject outlines

(37) Where a subject requires students to go on a workplace learning placement, the subject outline will explain:

  1. the duration of placements and when these will occur;
  2. the process for students to be allocated a placement;
  3. pre-placement requirements that students must meet to be permitted to go on placement;
  4. that students must cover the costs of attending their placement including, where relevant, travel to the placement site, accommodation while there, food and living expenses;
  5. that where a student will experience hardship in covering the costs of a placement, they can apply for financial support from the University; and
  6. that where a student will be prevented from attending a placement at a certain distance from their home because of unavoidable carer responsibilities or unexpected, unavoidable employment commitments, they can apply for special consideration to request a different location or timing of the placement.

Changes to subject outlines

(38) The Course and Subject Life Cycle Procedure states the requirements for:

  1. changes to subject outlines; and
  2. approval of changes to assessment requirements in a subject outline after the session has started.

Providing students with past subject outlines

(39) Students are expected to retain a copy of the subject outline of subjects they have passed, so they can produce these to meet professional accreditation requirements or when applying for credit towards subsequent courses of study.

(40) A student who has not retained a copy of a subject outline, and later requires one, may request a copy of the subject outline from the office of the teaching faculty, which may charge an administration fee to cover the cost of this service.

Recording Indigenous Australian content

(41) The Indigenous Australian Content in Courses and Subjects Policy specifies the data that must be recorded for courses and subjects with this type of content, in the curriculum management system.

Award names

(42) The name of an award to which a course leads has five possible components:

  1. an award indicator;
  2. a generic component;
  3. a course-specific component;
  4. a specialisation component; and
  5. designation honours, research or honorary award.

(43) The award indicator (e.g. ‘master of’, ‘associate degree in’) will use the preposition ‘of’ for all awards except an associate degree, graduate certificate or university certificate, which use ‘in’.

(44) A generic component describes a discipline or area of study that is broad enough to apply to more than one course at the same level (e.g. arts, policing). A generic component would not normally be used also as a course-specific component in a course name.

(45) A course-specific component describes content specific to a particular course, either where all subjects in the course are in the specific area of study (e.g. Master of Marketing) or in conjunction with a generic component to show the specific course area of study (e.g. Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology)). A term used as a course-specific component can also be used to show a specialisation in another course at the same level (e.g. Master of Business Administration (Marketing)).

(46) A specialisation component indicates that a graduate has completed a specialisation as an optional sequence within a course. 

(47) An honours designation (the word ‘honours’ in brackets) is added at the end of names of bachelor (honours) courses.

(48) A research designation (the word ‘research’ in brackets) is added at the end of names of masters by research courses.

(49) An honorary award designation adds the italicised phrase ‘honoris causa’ in brackets after the award name, for honorary degrees conferred by the University under the Governance (Honorary Awards) Rule. On the testamur, however, the phrase ‘honoris causa’ will not be italicised.

(50) The following elements must not be included in award names:

  1. the name of a minor;
  2. the phrase ‘with distinction’;
  3. the word ‘conversion’ for awards from conversion courses; or
  4. any reference to the location where the course was delivered.

(51) Course names in articulated sets of courses will be as similar as possible, using the same term for the discipline or area of study that is common to courses in the set. An exception may be made to meet market or professional expectations of one of the courses.

(52) Where a degree is offered as part of a double degree, and is more specialised because of its combination with the other component degree in the double degree, the degree name will include a descriptor to indicate this.

(53) The following rules apply to the writing of award names:

  1. Where both a generic component and a course-specific component are used, the course-specific component will be written in brackets after the generic component. If a specialisation is also used, the name of the specialisation is added within the brackets, after the course-specific component and separated from it by a dash; where there is more than one specialisation, they are separated by a forward slash without spaces.
  2. Abbreviations including acronyms or an ampersand in place of ‘and’ will not be used in award names, unless these are standard in a profession and industry and expected to be used: for example, ‘K-12’ in the name of an education award. A numeral, however, may be either a word or a number.

Abbreviations of award names

(54) The following rules apply to abbreviation of award names:

  1. Abbreviations will be consistent with the list of approved abbreviations of words.
  2. Where a word has not previously been used in an award title, the faculty will suggest an abbreviation in the abbreviation field of the course documents.
  3. In the abbreviation of an award title, words will be abbreviated wherever possible, provided that the abbreviation allows readers to deduce the full word, including variants on the same word (e.g. corrective and correctional; child, children and children’s).
  4. Prepositions are omitted from abbreviations.
  5. A single letter abbreviation is used where a word is conventionally abbreviated to a single letter (A for Arts in BA, H for Human in HRM); in contexts where there is no convention of abbreviating to a single letter, the same word may need a longer abbreviation or to be in full (e.g. HumanServ).
  6. An abbreviation will be a single sequence of letters without spaces or punctuation.
  7. A numeral will be abbreviated as the number; the word ‘years’ after a numeral will be abbreviated to ‘yrs’.
  8. The abbreviation of an honorary award starts with the abbreviation ‘Hon’ (for ‘honoris causa’) followed by a space before the normal abbreviation of the award (e.g. Hon DBus).
  9. In contexts where the abbreviation identifies Charles Sturt University as the institution awarding an award, the abbreviation is CSturt, in italics, following the award abbreviation and separated from it by a space.
  10. In the same context, for joint awards of Charles Sturt University and another institution, the abbreviations for both institutions will follow the award abbreviation and be separated from it by a space. They will appear in italics and divided by a forward slash without spaces. The order of the two institutions’ abbreviations will be determined by the relevant agreement.

Subject names

(55) Honours dissertation or project subjects will be named [Discipline] Honours Dissertation or [Discipline] Honours Project. The discipline descriptor may be broad or specific.

Subject codes

(56) Subject codes are issued by the Division of Student Administration.

  1. Faculties can request specific subject codes provided these meet the requirements below and are available.

(57) Each subject code comprises a three-letter discipline prefix and three digits.

(58) Discipline prefixes to subject codes are not necessarily the same as the academic units offering the subjects or the discipline areas reported against the subject in government reporting.

(59) The level of a subject is indicated by the first digit in the subject code. This number indicates how advanced the subject is, using the following scale. It does not indicate the ‘year level’ within a course, though it may coincide with the year level:

  1. Level 0: bridging, enabling or other non-award subject.
  2. Level 1: introductory.
  3. Level 2: building on level 1.
  4. Level 3: building on level 2 up to the outcome level of a three-year undergraduate degree.
  5. Level 4: the outcome level of a four-year undergraduate degree, an integrated four-year bachelor (honours) degree, and one-year bachelor (honours) degree or of postgraduate study that goes beyond undergraduate outcomes.
  6. Level 5: a component of a masters course other than a research component of a master by research course.
  7. Level 6: a research component of a masters course.
  8. Level 7: a subject contributing to a doctoral course (including professional doctorates).

(60) A subject code is unique to a subject and should not be re-used when that subject is made obsolete. The same code will be used for different versions of the one subject.

(61) Where the 99 possible two-digit distinguishing numbers in a discipline have all been used, the faculty must apply to the Director, Division of Student Administration for a new prefix for the discipline area.

Workplace learning

(62) The Course and Subject Design (Coursework) Procedure states the conditions which workplace learning subjects must meet to be classified as such.

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Section 5 - Guidelines

(63) Nil.