Amendments to existing programmes and qualifications

Richard S made this Official Information request to University of Otago

The request was successful.

From: Richard S

Dear University of Otago,

Under the Official Information Act 1982, I am requesting all documents that the University of Otago ("University") holds that discuss:

(1) the University's policies, obligations, responsibilities, and / or measures that the University undertakes, to ensure that changes to existing programmes and qualifications will not negatively impact existing students currently enrolled in those programmes and qualifications; and

(2) the University's policies, obligations, responsibilities, and / or measures that the University undertakes, to ensure that the requirements and assessment of any programme or qualifications are clearly communicated to both current and future students.

during the period of 30 June 2013 until 29 June 2017.

If my request is too broad, please do not hesitate to contact via email me to discuss refinement.

Yours faithfully,
Richard S

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From: Chris Stoddart
University of Otago

Dear Richard


Transitional arrangements in relation to changes to existing University of
Otago programmes and qualifications fall under clause 25 (“Transitional
Provisions”) of the University’s [1]Admission to University Statute 2011
(publically available online).


In the case of any specific changes to a qualification/programme,
transitional arrangements must be addressed as part of the proposal [to
change the programme].  It is expected that these arrangements will ensure
that negative impacts on current students are minimised, and that
appropriate communications are planned.


Proposals are considered by Divisional Boards, the University-level
[2]Board of Graduate Studies or [3]Board of Undergraduate Studies, the
University [4]Senate and, in the case of substantive changes, the
University [5]Council and the Universities New Zealand [6]Committee on
University Academic Programmes (CUAP).  Final approval may be granted by
the Senate in the case of minor amendments, and by Council and CUAP for
more significant changes.  There are no standard mandated transitional
arrangements or communications; rather these are carefully planned and
assessed on a case-by-case basis, so as to be appropriate to the changes
being proposed. 


[7]Template forms for amending regulations are publically available
online.  Forms 2 and 5, at the link provided, respectively cover proposals
to amend regulations and schedules, and deletion of programmes
(qualifications, major subjects and endorsements) or papers.  In both
instances the sections for recording Transitional Arrangements are on the
final page of the template form.


The Admission to University Statute, and the processes described above,
have been in effect during the period 30 June 2013 to 29 June 2017.


Kind regards

Chris Stoddart


Chris Stoddart • Manager, Policy and Compliance, Academic Services •
Deputy Privacy Officer • University of Otago • Tel +64 3 479 8993



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From: Richard S

Dear Chris,

Thank you for this thorough explanation and for directing me to the relevant pages. This was extremely helpful.

It's great to see the robust governance processes that University has in place to ensure that students are not negatively impacted by changes to programmes. I am also really impressed to see how transparent the University is about its governance and decision making.

I also came across some guidance on the University's website that discusses the application of the Fair Trade Act and Consumer Guarantees Act to the University in its dealings with students (including information regarding courses and material on the University’s website).

It's fantastic to see that the University is also taking such a proactive approach to complying with its obligations in this regard too.

Thank you again for your assistance.

Yours sincerely,

Richard S

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