Programme Approval, Recognition, and Accreditation Rules 2022

4. Criteria for approval of programmes for institutions under section 439 of the Act

  1. The following are the criteria for approval of programmes for institutions:
Criterion 1 Qualification to which the programme leads

The programme meets the definition published on the NZQA website of the applicable qualification type listed in the Table in the Appendix to the Qualification and Micro-credential Listing and Operational Rules.

Criterion 2 Title, aims, learning outcomes and coherence
  The title, aims, stated learning outcomes, and coherence of the whole programme are adequate and appropriate and clearly meet the graduate profile and specification for the qualification as listed on the NZQCF.
Criterion 3 Delivery methods  
  The delivery methods are adequate and appropriate, given the stated learning outcomes for the programme. Where specific resources are necessary for the programme to be provided, those resources are clearly outlined.
Criterion 4 Acceptability of the programme and consultation

There is a written summary of the consultation undertaken, the views expressed, and consideration of the views. The consultation and summary must articulate the need for and acceptability of the programme to the relevant communities (including ākonga, whānau, hapū, iwi and where appropriate, hapori Māori) and other key stakeholders (including the qualification developer and any relevant academic, employer, industry, professional and other bodies) and any required endorsement by a WDC under section 366(1)(g) of the Act has been obtained.

Criterion 5 Regulations

There are clear, relevant, and appropriate regulations that specify requirements for:

  • admission
  • credit recognition and transfer
  • recognition  of  prior learning
  • programme  length  and structure
  • integration  of  practical  and work-based components
  • assessment  procedures,  including  authenticity  of student work
  • normal progression within the programme
Criterion 6 Assessment and moderation

Assessment methodology is fair, valid, consistent and appropriate given the stated learning outcomes.

There is an effective system for moderation of assessment materials and decisions.
Criterion 7 Programme review

The institution:

  • assesses the currency and content of the programme
  • has adequate and effective processes for the ongoing review of the programme, taking account of the results of any review of the qualification
  • has adequate and effective processes for monitoring the quality of outcomes for learners and other stakeholders, and for reviewing programme regulations and content
  • updates the programme accordingly.
Criterion 8 Research required for degrees and post-graduate qualifications
  The links between research and the curriculum are clear, adequate, and effective.


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