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Applications for course accreditation for new Graduate and Undergraduate Certificates

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Under the Australian Government’s recently announced higher education relief package, providers are encouraged to develop six month online courses, focused on identified national priorities. 

The Australian Government has amended the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) to introduce a new qualification, called an Undergraduate Certificate. The existing Graduate Certificate continues unchanged and can be awarded for a course at the postgraduate level. 

Application for accreditation

Providers without the relevant self-accrediting authority need to apply to TEQSA to have their new course/s accredited.

TEQSA has developed a streamlined approach for the assessment of these courses. This ensures an expedited assessment to help providers make these courses available during the COVID-19 pandemic.

TEQSA will expedite the assessment where:

  • a course leads to the new Undergraduate Certificate is created by drawing together four units from an existing accredited undergraduate course
  • a new Graduate Certificate is created by drawing together four units from an existing accredited postgraduate course.

TEQSA will review its arrangements for accrediting these courses in the future once a degree of business as usual resumes.

Preparing your application

The scope of the assessment will focus on a limited set of key elements relating to the following standards under the Higher Education Standards Framework:

  • Standard 1.1.1 in relation to admission
  • Standard 3.1.1 in relation to course design
  • Standard 3.2.3 in relation to staffing
  • Standard 5.1.3 in relation to course approval
  • Standard 5.4 (if applicable) in relation to delivery with other parties.

Your application must contain the information and evidence set out in this evidence table.

An optional template is available to assist with preparing the application.

It is anticipated that most courses will be drawn from a single accredited course. If the proposed course is drawn from multiple courses or from multiple AQF levels, this will require a more comprehensive assessment from TEQSA. In this case, there will be an enhanced onus on the provider in preparing the application to explain the learning outcomes and pathways to further learning. 

Submitting your application

You must submit an application to TEQSA via the Provider Portal using the existing form for Course Accreditation (HESF) existing provider. Some fields in the existing form are not relevant.

Follow these instructions which explain how to complete the application form, specific to these applications.

Application fee waived

TEQSA is waiving fees for registered higher education providers to 30 June 2021 (and refunding charges that have been invoiced since 1 January 2020) under measures to lift financial pressure on higher education providers. There will be no fee charged for assessment of applications for accreditation of Undergraduate and Graduate Certificates.

What happens next?

TEQSA is expediting the assessment for the accreditation of these courses. Once we receive your application, we will check the application to ensure it is complete and contains the required information. If we need further information, we will contact you. If the application is complete, we will conduct the assessment and notify you once the assessment has been completed.

TEQSA will accredit the Undergraduate Certificate courses in line with the AQF. This means that the Undergraduate Certificate courses will be accredited until 31 December 2021. The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Education and Skills Councils will review this qualification to decide whether the qualification should continue to be made available after that date. TEQSA may extend the period of accreditation for these course in line with this review and any decision to extend this qualification type within the AQF.

We publish information on our decisions in accordance with TEQSA’s policy on public report of TEQSA’s decisions

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)