Course Quality

Changing, reviewing, and creating curricula: resources and information

This webpage brings together a variety of resources from within the division of Deputy Vice- Chancellor and Vice-President (Academic) and the wider University community. These resources are aimed to help you navigate the requirements to get your curriculum proposal or variation documented, considered and approved.


What do you need help with?

A new Course

Your first point of contact

Your school’s Course Quality Officer (CQO) and Curriculum Advisor (CA)

Timeline

The Timeline for Course Approvals shows when new courses should receive approval. Important to note:

  • An undergraduate course should receive approval from SAC in December two years prior to implementation.
  • A postgraduate course should receive approval from SAC in April one year prior to implementation.

What’s required?

  • New courses require several forms of documentation and approval. There are two overall stages:
  • You will need to work closely with your academic team, School Manager, School Librarian, Digital Futures, Curriculum Advisor, Course Data Management Officer and CQO throughout this process. You will obtain feedback from other Schools, and develop a detailed financial evaluation for the proposed course.
  • Course concept approval is required from School Academic Committees, the Business Infrastructure and Development Committee and the University Executive, followed by APCAC and Academic Senate.
  • A course concept proposal is completed on an A18; a full course proposal is completed on a B18; a financial evaluation is completed on an F19. It is recommended you seek assistance from the Office of Quality and Reviews and Office of Business Intelligence and Performance as you complete these forms.
  • Given the significance of designing and implementing a new course, and the stages of governance required as a self-accrediting provider with TEQSA, it is imperative to map the project timeline for new courses with your CQO.

What do I do first?

  1. Have conversations with your Deputy Dean and discipline head initially to gauge support for the new course concept and resource implications.
  2. Discuss for example, curriculum design and structure, course learning outcomes, priorities for student engagement, approaches to assessment, and other aspects of course development with your Curriculum Advisor.
  3. Contact your CQO to advise of the project. They will guide you through the rest of the process and begin to develop the timeline.

Relevant policies:

Helpful resources:

A new unit or specialisation

Your first point of contact

Your school's Course Quality Officer (CQO) and Course Data Management (CDM) officer)

Timeline

Sub- SAC committee structures differ between schools. It's important to adhere to the process and timelines for your school when you are proposing a new unit or specialisation. School specific timelines are designed to complement University governance committees. The Academic Planning and Courses Approvals Committee (APCAC), chaired by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), has final approval delegation for new units. Please contact your CDM officer for all relevant deadlines.

What's required?

  • New units require a D18.
  • When a new unit is introduced it must be added to every affected specialisation and/or course by completing a B18 or C18 variation form. As your DAP is responsible for these variations, it is important for you to include them from the initial stages of unit design for all required documentation to be planned appropriately.
  • Unit proposals need to be considered and endorsed by any applicable discipline-level committees, the School Academic Committee (SAC) and APCAC. Once the documentation is drafted, the process will take a minimum of three months.

What do I do first?

  • Have a conversation with your DAP to establish support for the proposal.
  • Discuss for example, curriculum design and structure, unit learning outcomes, priorities for student engagement, approaches to assessment, and other aspects of unit design and  development with your Curriculum Advisor.
  • Contact your CQO to advise of the new proposal and when the unit will first run.
  • Download the D18 template.
  • Complete the D18 and return it to the CQO for review.
  • Once finalised, your CQO will submit the documentation to the applicable Course Data Management Officer for submission for the appropriate approvals. You will be advised at each stage of governance if changes or actions are required.

Relevant policies:

Helpful resources:

A course and/ or specialisation variation (including majors, sub-majors, and key- programs)

Your first point of contact

Your Curriculum Advisor (CA)

Timeline

Sub-SAC committee structures differ between schools. It’s important to adhere to the process and timelines for your school when you are proposing a variation of a course or specialisation. School specific timelines are designed to complement University governance committees. Level of approval required varies, dependant on what elements of a course or specialisation are being changed. Approval authorities and delegations for courses and specialisations are published as part of the Courses and Units Approval Policy's Associated Information. Please contact your Course Data Management (CDM) Officer for guidance and deadlines.

What's required?

  • Varied courses that require updating the current B18 form, varied specialisations updates to a C18.
  • To ensure changes are appropriately actioned, all variations should be discussed with your Course Quality Officer (CQO), regardless of the level of final approval needed.
  • A change to 25% or more of a course’s non-elective units or a strategically significant change requires a course concept proposal and additional approvals. Consulting with your CQO prior to commencing variations ensures appropriate timelines are established.
  • Changes to the name of specialisations, or those variations which trigger code changes, must be added to every affected course by also completing a B18. Consulting with your CQO prior to commencing variations will ensure appropriate timelines are established.
  • A change to a course or specialisation may require a completion of an E18 to confirm the transition arrangements for current students. Your CQO will provide guidance for its completion.

What do I do first?

  • Have a conversation with your discipline head and DAP to establish support for the proposed variation/s.
  • Discuss for example, curriculum design and structure, priorities for student engagement, approaches to assessment, and other aspects of curriculum design and  development with your Curriculum Advisor
  • Contact coursequality@westernsydney.edu.au. Include the course/specialisation code and name, and briefly outline proposed changes.
  • The Course Quality team will confirm the level of approval required and whether a course concept proposal is also necessary. You will then be provided with the initial B18 draft for courses and/or C18 for specialisations.
  • Complete the B18/C18 and return it to coursequality@westernsydney.edu.au, for review.
  • Once finalised, your CQO will submit the documentation to the applicable Course Data Management Officer for submission for the appropriate approvals. You will be advised at each stage of governance if changes or actions are required.

Relevant policies:

Helpful resources:

A unit variation

Your first point of contact

coursequality@westernsydney.edu.au within the Office of Quality and Reviews (OQR)

Important dates

Sub-SAC committee structures differ between schools. It’s important to adhere to the process and timelines for your school when you are proposing a variation of a unit. School specific timelines are designed to complement University governance committees. Level of approval required varies, dependant on what elements of a unit are being changed. Approval authorities and delegations for units are published as part of the Courses and Units Approval Policy. Please contact coursequality@westernsydney.edu.aufor guidance and deadlines.

What’s required?

  • As some changes require Dean’s approval only, a D18 may not be required. However, even where changes only require Dean’s approval, you still need to work with OQR and CDM team to ensure your changes are recorded and implemented.
  • Changes to names of units, or those variations which trigger code changes, must be added to every affected specialisation and/or course by also completing a B18 or C18. Consulting with OQR prior to commencing variations will ensure appropriate timelines are established.

What do I do now?

  • Have a conversation with your discipline head and DAP to establish support for the proposed variation/s.
  • Contact coursequality@westernsydney.edu.au. Include the unit code and name, and briefly outline proposed changes.
  • The Course Quality Team will advise whether a D18 is required.
  • Complete your D18 and return it to coursequality@westernsydney.edu.au, for review.
  • Once finalised, your CQO will submit the documentation to the applicable Course Data Management Officer for submission for the appropriate approvals. You will be advised at each stage of governance if changes or actions are required.

Relevant policies:

Helpful resources: