The NZQA monitor may recommend that an institution requests permission to discontinue NZQA monitoring and replace it with self-monitoring.

When is self-monitoring considered?

This occurs when the monitor considers that a programme and its delivery are stable, and that all conditions for changing its monitoring status are met.

It is expected that an institution will continue to use an external monitor as part of the self-monitoring process. Where NZQA approves self-monitoring, other registration bodies may continue to monitor the programme.

The self-monitoring status of a programme may be revoked if the delivery is unsatisfactory or NZQA has other concerns. 

Conditions for requesting self-monitoring

Conditions for the transfer to self-monitoring include confirmation from all parties that the institution is managing the programme appropriately and in particular that:

  1. The programme is being implemented as planned and presented at the time of approval, subject to modifications and enhancements broadly consistent with the intent of the programme and the natural evolution of a quality programme.
  2. Recommendations made during the programme approval and accreditation and by the monitor have been appropriately addressed.
  3. Mechanisms are in place at an institutional level to ensure independent, external academic input during reviews and consideration of proposed programme enhancements.
  4. That NZQA will gain sufficient awareness of any issues with the programme or its delivery from the Annual Programme Evaluation Report (APER).

Request for self-monitoring

Institutions meeting the above conditions must request a transfer to self-monitoring status by formally writing to NZQA.

Approval for transferring the responsibility for monitoring to the institution will be granted by the Deputy Chief Executive, Quality Assurance Division.

Self-monitoring involves external monitoring and the provision of an APER to NZQA.

Submitting an Annual Programme Evaluation Report (APER)

The external monitor's report should be included in or attached to the APER.

An APER includes the following information:

  • enrolment information
  • learner retention and achievement
  • graduate destination information
  • internal and external moderation activities
  • feedback from learners, teaching staff and external stakeholders
  • consultation with external stakeholders
  • how the institution has addressed any recommendations from:
    • the initial evaluation report and/or
    • the most recent monitor's report
    • changes to the programme and/or its delivery since the last report
    • staffing changes since the last report
    • current resources to maintain delivery of the programme
    • staff professional development activities
    • research activities of staff
    • significant issues and challenges and proposed actions.

Report format

There is no specific report format.

The purpose of the report is to provide evidence that:

  • the programme continues to be implemented as approved
  • there has been ongoing consultation with stakeholders
  • minor changes and developments have been approved by the institution’s board.

It is important to clearly identify any issues or problems that may have arisen during the year, the way these matters have been or will be addressed, and the possible need to make an application for major change (type 2 change) to a programme.

The institution is responsible for carrying out a review process each year and sending a copy of the APER to NZQA by 30 June.

Graduating year review and special review

Under Rule 12.2 (e) (I), the review of the first graduating year of a programme leading to a degree or post-graduate qualification at levels 7-10 needs to occur as a part of the institution’s annual programme evaluation, and the findings reported. These findings should be included in the information given to the monitor.

The review must include the following:

  • a programme statement with a brief overview of the programme, the extent to which its original aims have been achieved and any changes that have occurred
  • a description of the review process
  • the outcomes of the review process, including the ongoing acceptability of the programme to stakeholders, assessment and learner performance, enrolment and completion data
  • the outcomes of any external evaluations, for example by professional registration bodies or by NZQA external evaluation and review (EER)
  • a statement of intention to continue or discontinue the programme and a rationale for that decision.

Further information

For more information, please email

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