Policy

Bachelor Honours Degrees - Policy

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1. Purpose and Objectives

This policy provides a University-wide framework for the structure and award of honours as part of the University's commitment to the assurance of teaching and learning quality.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) - a single comprehensive national qualifications framework that represents the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training.

3. Policy Scope/Coverage

This policy applies to all AQF level 8 Bachelor Honours Degrees offered by The University of Queensland from 1 January 2015.

4. Policy Statement

This policy seeks to:

  • ensure Bachelor Honours Degrees offered at the University are maintained at the highest academic standard;
  • ensure that students awarded honours are well prepared to pursue successfully the next stage of their studies and/or professional life: for example, to enter a postgraduate coursework degree or higher degree by research degree to undertake/critically evaluate research relevant to their discipline in an employment or other situation, or to develop a body of transferable personal and professional skills to complete a major project;
  • provide the basis on which a confident comparison of honours results from different disciplines within the two forms of honours described in this policy can be made.

5. Honours Can Take Two Forms

The University recognises that two broad options are available for Bachelor Honours Degrees, which can be awarded as either:

  • an additional one year (16 units) of study following completion of an AQF level 7 Bachelor Degree; or
  • a single qualification of at least four years (64 units) duration.

In both forms, there is a commitment to ensuring that the Bachelor Honours Degree qualifies individuals who apply a body of knowledge in a specific context to undertake professional work and as a pathway for research and further learning.

A class of honours must be awarded in a Bachelor Honours Degree or an integrated program which includes a Bachelor Honours component.

Custodians
Academic Registrar
Mr Mark Erickson

Procedures

Bachelor Honours Degrees - Procedures

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Body

1. Purpose and Objectives

These procedures provide a University-wide framework for the structure and award of honours as part of the University's commitment to the assurance of teaching and learning quality.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) - a single comprehensive national qualifications framework that represents the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training.

Committee for Academic Programs Policy (CAPP) - a committee of the Academic Board that considers and advises Academic Board on matters of educational significance, to maintain the quality and effectiveness of programs of study offered by the University.

3. Procedures Scope/Coverage

These procedures apply to all staff and students at The University of Queensland.

4. Procedures Statement

These procedures define:

  • the three options for entry to honours at The University of Queensland;
  • structural differences between the two forms in which honours can be awarded; and
  • methods for determining the class of honours.

5. Structure and Award of Honours

5.1 Honours pathways

Two broad options are available for Bachelor Honours Degrees, which can be awarded as either:

  • an additional one year (16 units) of study following completion of an AQF level 7 Bachelor Degree; or
  • a single qualification of at least four years (64 units) duration*.

Three pathways to honours programs are offered at The University of Queensland. These have been developed in accordance with the AQF for the level 8 Bachelor Honours Degree qualification.

The options for pathways to Honours at UQ are:

  • Option 1: Admit graduates into a one-year level 8 Bachelor Honours Degree, following completion of a level 7 Bachelor Degree.
  • Option 2: Admit all commencing students into a four-year (or more) level 7 Bachelor Degree and (at some point during that degree) students who meet the entry requirements may apply to change programs to a four-year (or more) level 8 Bachelor Honours degree.
  • Option 3: Admit all students into a four-year (or more) level 8 Bachelor Honours Degree.

For options 2 and 3, program rules may specify that students are permitted to exit the level 8 Bachelor Honours Degree program before completion and be awarded a specified level 7 Bachelor Degree. Justification must be included in the program proposal submitted to CAPP and specified in the program rules.

* including graduate entry honours programs of three years or greater duration

5.2 Program structure

Details relating to admission requirements and exit arrangements for Bachelor Honours Degrees will be documented in the program rules.

The program rules must specify a set of courses, including 16 units of late-year courses, that will be used to calculate the GPA for the purpose of awarding the class of honours. Of the courses specified, at least 12 units must be graded courses. Only courses undertaken at UQ can be included in the calculation of the class of honours.

The Bachelor Honours Degree must incorporate a minimum research training component of at least 4 units. This research training could be a combination of a substantial piece of research and/or research preparation, with the minimum contribution from a single contributing course being the equivalent of 1 unit (for example, 50% of a 2 unit course). Group work contributing to the research component is to be assessed individually. The courses contributing to the research training component must be included in the calculation of the GPA for the purpose of awarding the class of honours.

In submissions to CAPP to establish or modify honours requirements or their program rules, faculties are required to identify the 4 units that provide research or research preparation in the courses that contribute to honours.

5.3 Classes of honours

The University of Queensland recognises academic merit achieved in AQF level 8 Bachelor Degree Honours qualifications through the award of a class of honours.

  • Bachelor Honours Degree may be awarded in an approved field of study and must be awarded in one of these classes – honours class I; honours class II (A or B); honours class III (A or B).
  • Unless the program rules state that all attempts at courses that contribute to the calculation of the class of honours should be used, the result achieved in the first attempt will be used, regardless of the program in which the result was obtained. This will include where supplementary assessment has been undertaken (for example a result 2S4 means a grade of 2 will be used for calculation of honours classification, and a grade of 4 used for the purposes of completion of the program requirements).
  • The standard cut-offs for classes of honours are shown below. Where specific program requirements make these cut-offs impracticable, a case can be made to CAPP for a change to be made for that program.

 

GPA

Class of Honours

6.200 – 7.000

Class I

5.650 – 6.199

Class IIA

5.000 – 5.649

Class IIB

4.000 – 4.999

Class IIIA

<4.000

Class IIIB

It is intended that no student will be disadvantaged under the revised cut-off arrangements. Transition arrangements will be made for students who, prior to 2015 have completed courses that will be used to determine the class of honours. The student’s class of honours will be determined using both the 2015 cut-offs and the applicable 2014 method and cut-offs (see pre-2015 PPL 3.50.12b Procedures). The highest class of honours will be awarded.

Custodians
Academic Registrar
Mr Mark Erickson

Forms

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Award of Honours - Procedures (pre 2015)

Award of Honours - Procedures (pre 2015)

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Description: 

PPL 3.50.12b Award of Honours - Procedures (pre 2015), including 2014 method and cut-offs for class of honours.

Custodians
Academic Registrar
Mr Mark Erickson
Custodians
Academic Registrar
Mr Mark Erickson
Custodians
Academic Registrar
Mr Mark Erickson